Julie Capaldi, July 7, 2015

I am just obsessed with Camp iRock. I guess it’s because reading is my passion and I love to see children excited about books. There’s something really rewarding to actually witness the impact of everyone’s hard work. I love the collaboration between United Way, the School District and the Y. It’s a true partnership with the lives of children at the heart of everything. It is so pure and right.

Last Wednesday, the United Way Education Impact Council met and received their first Camp iRock update from Adam, the Camp Director, Alida from the Y and the Clemson University Call Me Mister interns. I didn’t go to the meeting but I heard a commotion in the hall right outside of my door. I couldn’t stand it so I went to see what was happening. Adam, Alida and the “interns” were still revved up from the meeting and to say they were “on fire” about Camp iRock would be an understatement. Here’s what was said. First, the children ARE learning, not just reading but how to concentrate for more than a few minutes. They are learning “soft skills” and character development. Swimming is a huge hit with the campers and it’s amazing that many of them had never been in water…ever. The Y counsellors and the Call Me Mister interns are providing adult male role models, something that many of our children don’t have in their lives.

One “lesson learned” is that we didn’t anticipate children with real behavioral health issues so next year, we will add that to the mix.


PS:  We are truly touched by the overwhelming response for new books that the campers can take home at the end of Camp iRock.  We still need about 20 more copies of “Nubs”.