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2017 NONPROFIT WISH LIST: Camp Agape children’s grief camp

Camp Agape is a bereavement camp that helps kids who have lost a loved one. The program offers its services free to the youth and their families. Staff photo by Daniel Clifton

MARBLE FALLS — For 17 years, Camp Agape has provided a bereavement camp each summer for children who have lost a loved one. The impact on those children has been life-changing.

This fall, the camp expanded its service to include the entire family.

“The family retreat was so successful that we know this is the direction God wants us to go,” said Kim Turk, founder of Camp Agape.

However, she pointed out, going in that direction will require more resources.

Camp Agape provides its services at no cost to families. Children ages 7-12 attend a four-day camp complete with all the same activities found at other summer camps along with grief support and therapeutic programs. The camp staff and volunteers provide the youths with tools and activities to help them through the grief process, both during camp and after they return home.

The camp, which will be held July 16-19, 2018, at Camp Buckner just north of Kingsland, is always looking for support through both donations and volunteers.

Some of the things the camp has on its Christmas list are:

• a MacBook laptop computer;

• 150 sport water bottles for children and volunteers (can include company logo);

• 150 T-shirts for children and volunteers (can include company logo);

• 52 caps for children to wear during camp (can include company logo);

• a 10-foot-by-10-foot canopy tent;

• footballs, flying discs, and basketballs;

• daily devotions for children (“God and Me” or “Gotta Have God”);

• and children’s Adventure Bibles

“We also need people who want to sponsor a child to camp,” Turk said. “We’ve managed to maintain a free program for 17 years, but it does cost us.”

The cost of camp is $500 per child, but donors can also provide partial sponsorships.

Camp Agape also needs volunteers for the 2018 camp. Some of the positions require the volunteer to attend camp while others are needed for outside camp or just partial camp attendance.

They are also seeking an event planner (stipend provided) for the annual 5K fun run fundraiser, which typically takes place in August.

With the success of the family retreat held the weekend before Thanksgiving, Turk said it means basically doubling Camp Agape’s needs as they want to make sure everyone who attends those retreats (families with children of all ages) can get water bottles, T-shirts, and caps as well as the same therapeutic services and activities as the summer campers.

Go to campagapetexas.org to donate or for more information.

daniel@thepicayune.com

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