Registrations for summer camp rolling in!  So, too, are phone calls like this:

Hi, last summer, I sent my foster child to Camp Crosley, and it was the best experience for him.  I now have two more foster kids this year, and I want them all to be able to come to camp. Is there some kind of financial assistance available?  How do I apply?”

We’re in the middle of the Annual Campaign at the YMCA of Muncie, and when these types phone calls come in, we screen applicants, discuss the needs, and a committee meets and approves scholarships because we believe EVERY kid deserves the chance to attend camp.  Why?  What’s so special about camp especially when there are wonderful service organizations all over the world where people can donate their time, talents and money to benefit the lives of children and teenagers?

We think our stories speak for themselves. Consider the following:

When I came to Camp Crosley, I had just gone through a really rough time in my life. I had issues with friends and family, and I ended up self harming for awhile. When I came to camp, I’d just stopped doing that, and it was really hard. My experience at Camp Crosley helped me figure out my issues in a non harmful way, and it taught me to value myself and be confident.

Or this one:

I was so mad when I found out my case-worker and foster mother were making me go to camp. I didn’t want to go, it was extremely out of my element! Life up to that point was so rough. Losing my mother at the age of 13, my family falling apart, and me ending up in foster care. I am so thankful they made me step out of my element, and go to Camp Crosley!! Those were the three best summers of life. Made good friends, and shared my story with others and inspired (at least I think I did) them! I learned a lot about love, respect, family, and God. One of the best parts about camp is your not just there to have fun but learn a little bit about all those things.

Some stories are funny – like the one from this alumnus:

Coming home from a week at camp and Mom finding my bar of soap was still in it’s wrapper. My reply was, But Mom, I went swimming every day! 

And some are sweet – like the one from this eight year old camper:

I was homesick, but that’s why there’s counselors because then the counselor helped me get over that.  Every night the owner or kinda the boss- he gave me cards to know how many more days till camp’s done.

And then there are the stories like this one from a former camper/staff member.

Camp Crosley saved my life. There’s no other way to phrase it. Having attended camp since I was 10, I was beyond excited when I was hired to be a counselor at 18, and our camp director handed me my “Professional Role Model” t-shirt. Camp had an immediate and lasting impact on me. Ultimately, it gave me something so priceless and invaluable: a sense of purpose. It made me believe I could be the kind of person to inspire others and help people. And it is because of this sense of purpose that I chose to become a nurse. But I almost didn’t make it. My senior year of high school, I decided to engage in a relationship with, whom I thought, was a wonderful young man. Little did I know that this fairy tale relationship would soon become a living nightmare of constant abuse. He almost convinced me not to become a counselor for the sole purpose of staying with him over the summer. I considered it for a while, but I felt this indescribable pull to return to camp. It was something I had never felt before. After seeing how well people treated and respected me at Camp Crosley, as well as being in this incredibly supportive and positive environment, I gained the strength to leave my boyfriend for good.  Camp saved my life. Though Crosley, himself, only had a short time on this earth, clearly God had much greater plans for his memory after he passed. So thank you to the Ball family and everyone who’s been so generous to support this camp. And, of course, “… for Crosley, Lord we thank Thee…” 

There are so many more past success stories out there, and, we believe there are so many more future success stories from campers we have yet to host.  Will you please consider donating to Camp Crosley today?   Together we can scholarship more kids so they can experience Camp’s nurturing and hopeful environment where they can connect with God, others and themselves. You can donate easily here.