Rotary seeking “Cash for Camperships” – some donations matched by Main Street Bank today

Above: The Rotary Club is working with Main Street Bank to maximize support for camp scholarships for Southborough residents. The support is expected to be needed more than ever in our community next summer.

The Rotary Club partnered with Main Street Bank to support camp scholarships for families who won’t be able to afford it next year. Donations to the GoFundMe campaign made today will have a special impact:

Starting Tuesday 9/22/20, for the next 10 people who donate $50 or more, Main Street Bank will match an additional $50 to that donation! We’d really like to get that total of 10 more donors matched before campaign ends on 9/28! Please donate if you can and please help us spread the word.

Rotary Kids Activity Kit
(click to enlarge

Plus, Rotary is sweetening the pot for families with kids:

anyone who donates $25 or more thru Friday 9/25/20 will automatically be entered into a random drawing for a fun set of Kids Activity items. (All items in the set are new.)

To support the fundraising drive, click here. (Even if you miss the September 22nd or 25th incentives, the drive will be running through September 28th.)

So, why the focus on camperships? This summer, Rotary’s Liz Kaprielian had several discussions with Southborough Youth & Family Services’ Director Sarah Cassell and Program Director Shannon Kinayman. She explained:

we began to realize how the impact of COVID-19 will increase the need for Camping Scholarships. . . As the pandemic goes on, and more people lose their jobs or have hours cut, more families than ever may need help if they want to send a child to camp. And camp costs will almost certainly rise as a result of new health and safety precautions camps institute. All the funds raised will benefit the Camping Scholarship Program and help ensure scholarships can be given next year and into the future.

The GoFundMe page details:

Cost for camp per child varies depending on the type of camp and duration of the camp stay, but on average…

$ 50 donation will cover ½ day of art camp
$ 100 donation will cover 1 day at day camp
$ 150 donation will cover a day of overnight camp

Although COVID-19 resulted in almost all summer camps being shut down for the 2020 season, SYFS still needs to build up the financial foundation for their camp scholarship program. They anticipate more families needing camping scholarships in 2021 and also expect to see camp costs rise as new health and safety measures are introduced.

The press release expounds:

The Camping Scholarship Program affords Southborough families experiencing financial hardship an opportunity to provide their children with meaningful and enriching summer camp activities and quality supervision during the summer months. In some situations, it ensures parents in these families can continue their work schedules without disruption or increased financial hardship during the summer months. An average of 36 campers per year are served by the program, with 2 weeklong camp sessions, and SBYFS prioritizes camp for children 5-14 years old (or kindergarten through 8th grade).

Initially, Rotary hoped to support camperships through the annual Food Truck Festival last spring. After the pandemic forced the festival to be cancelled, members discussed how they could move forward. They agreed to launch a GoFundMe campaign with a goal of raising $5,000. The campaign was launched on September 14th. A partnership with Main Street Bank already secured matching funds last week for donations made on September 17-18. So far, the fund has raised over $1,000. 

The Rotary’s press release notes that the initiative ties in well to one of their missions:

Rotary International has long supported Health & Wellness initiatives and camping provides children with a myriad of physical and mental benefits. It connects kids to others they may not normally meet, boosts their self-esteem, lets them enjoy nature, develops their independence, gets them active, teaches them leadership skills, helps them make friends, allows them to find & develop new interests, helps them unplug-destress-relax, allows them to build resilience by letting them try, fail and try again, and creates wonderful memories. Camp also affords families a break from childcare so they can rest and recharge as well.

You can learn more about the Southborough Rotary Club via their Facebook page here.

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Dave Gould
3 years ago

Overnite camp may be too much-maybe wait a year to resume.

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