By Mackenzie Gosset
This past summer, I was given the unbelievable opportunity to visit Morry’s Camp, a sleepaway camp for children who are raised in under-resourced areas but still want the chance to experience summer camp. The camp is located on a 900-acre campsite that overlooks the Delaware River in Glen Spey, New York. Morry’s Camp provides the children of families living in under-resourced locations with a safe and fun environment that contains an abundance of opportunities. Morry’s Camp allows each and every one of its campers to become in touch with the beauty of nature, build healthy relationships with their peers, try and achieve new things, and be mentored on both educational and life lessons. From boating to culinary arts, the camp supports and instills confidence into all of its campers no matter what activities in which they choose to partake. I was fortunate enough to be able to experience a day in the life of a camper at Morry’s and experience everything that the camp has to offer.
When I got off the bus at Morry’s Camp, I could not stop smiling. All I could see was kids that were so appreciative of what Morry’s Camp was giving them and kids who were just simply happy and able to enjoy themselves. This made me truly realize that you don’t need luxuries, like a cell phone or a flat screen TV, to find true happiness. The children were able to show me that it’s important to not stress over the small things and to make the best of what you have and embrace these moments of joy. They were able to teach me that you can have fun no matter where you are or what you are doing as long as you have the support and loyalty of others along the way.
I then had the opportunity to eat lunch with some of the campers and play some games with them. This touched my heart because I was able to connect with and make friends with campers my own age and exchange stories about my camp experiences with them. I found that I did have a lot in common with some of the campers, and it was so nice to meet new teenagers that didn’t live in my area, but still enjoyed the same things as me.
After hanging out with some of the campers, one of the directors of the camp, Dawn, gave me a tour of the camp. I got to see a bunch of the different facilities around camp, such as the basketball courts, the lake, the fine arts area, and the social hall. Because this is an under-resourced camp, Dawn explained how a lot of the facilities are not very nice; however, she also explained how that does not stop any of the campers from having fun or achieving their goals. Dawn’s words really got me reevaluating my views on the true purpose of summer camp.
On the bus ride back to my own summer camp, I thought about the eye opening and inspirational experience I just had at Morry’s Camp.
From just being there for a few hours, I was able to learn the importance of not taking anything for granted and that it doesn’t really take much to have fun. This experience completely changed the meaning of camp for me and made me want to bring these new values back to my friends at my camp. I hope to continue my involvement in Project Morry and help make each kid at Morry’s Camp find a love for camp the way I have.
Photo courtesy of Morry’s Camp on Facebook