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No Youth Camp This Year
younghope1
Posted: Saturday, January 11, 2014 10:33 AM
Joined: 12/5/2011
Posts: 127


I regret to inform any families here that were planning on sending their teens to Austin's Camp Building Bridges this summer that it is not taking place this year. I was saddened by the news yesterday by the Oklahoma Chapter they were informed by National that July was going to be National Alzheimer's Month this year. I don't understand, because they still could have held it in June. It makes me sad for the families that have used it in the past to give their teen a respite from the disease as well as an opportunity of education about the disease. I feel this is actually probably the Alzheimer's Association's way of ending the camp. Very sad in deed when a program as this has given so much to families in need. 

Tracy


jfkoc
Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 4:26 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21250


After a bunch of calls I talked to Mark Freid CEO, OK. He said that funding was one problem but that getting enough kids was another. Just not cost effective. He was straight forward and very nice.

I think you are right...it may not ever happen again.


Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 7:10 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519


I'm very surprised that there are not enough kids.  Members are always posting who have children or grandchildren at home.  It was a great idea.

Iris L.

Mimi S.
Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 7:22 PM
Joined: 11/29/2011
Posts: 7027


Yes, but how many of them live close enough to the camp to go? Even if there was a scholarship, many parents would not be comfortable sending a young child too far.

 

I do hope there are opportunities for day camps with scholarships provided as needed.


Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 7:58 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519


Mimi, kids go to camp all the time.  And I think this camp was for teens.  I was a camp doctor at an asthma camp and one of our youngsters was six!  Somehow he managed to break his arm but he still finished out the week with his arm in a cast.  This was back in the late 1970s.

Iris L.

younghope1
Posted: Thursday, January 16, 2014 6:59 AM
Joined: 12/5/2011
Posts: 127


Thank you Jkoc, for making a call. There has been so many staff changes since the camp started I didn't know who to call. Personally, I don't think the fund was an issue. I know they receive several big grants and several small ones to fund this program and it is nothing out of the Alzheimer's Association's pocket because the fund are specifically for this program. The only thing that is taken from the association is the staff person they send there each day for educational purposes. Honestly, since the camp program was handed over to a different person to run the last 2 years it has gone down hill. It is as if she really didn't have the time to mess with it or even care. I have talked to the person that was suppose to over see the program and was not impressed at all. And yes to make it clear this camp is not for young kids it is a youth camp ages 12-18. The burden of expenses was on the donations and other chapters had also set aside funding for travel expenses and scholarships to make sure there were no expense burdens in allowing youth to attend this camp. I think there were around 17 that attended last year from what I was told. The program needs someone that cares and knows what they are doing to run it. I may make a few calls today myself. There are only over 250,000 young caregiver's under the age of 18, so there are not enough kids???? Hhhmm, sounds to me like there isn't enough outreach.
jfkoc
Posted: Friday, January 17, 2014 5:07 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21250


Tracy...may I pass this along?
younghope1
Posted: Saturday, January 18, 2014 6:21 AM
Joined: 12/5/2011
Posts: 127


Sure Jk. Okay. I am not having much luck getting in touch with Mark Fried as I have left 3 messages, but I have spoken with the original person that started the camp with me and her words were, "I hoped to carry the torch on this for you forever." But she had to move last year and that is when the program was handed to someone else. She says she was also told it was funding. I just don't buy that excuse, because as I said the camp initially started as a separate entity from the Alzheimer's Association. I KNOW who the outside sponsors are and I am sure they could get more if the time and effort was put into by the person that was suppose to be running it. The person that use to run the program said there were "MORE THAN ENOUGH KIDS", so that saddens me even more to know these kids ARE there but the time and effort is not. So sad, our world is all about money and fame.
Iris L.
Posted: Saturday, January 18, 2014 10:43 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519


Speaking of fame, that's what the Youth Camp needs.  A prominent celebrity or child of celebrity to outreach to the community.  I used to work with the lupus support groups and their approach was to partner with a celebrity or two. 

 

BTW, there should be youth camps in all chapter locations.  Respite is promoted for the adult caregivers.  Why not respite for the teen caregivers?

Iris L.
 


younghope1
Posted: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 7:52 AM
Joined: 12/5/2011
Posts: 127


Camp update: I finally spoke to Mark Fried the CEO of the Oklahoma Chapters in Tulsa & OKC and was basically told 2 things:

1. Due to lack of youth attending the program, the sponsors that had been awarding grants over the last several years, had lost interest due to the camp program not growing.

2. Because of lack of interest the grants had bascially stopped and the costs were shouldered by the Oklahoma Chapters. 

I tried to discuss with him about using celebrities to advertise the program to give it an outreach as so many people are not even connected with their local chapters, that this might give the program the increase and awareness it is needing. To no avail, he kept going back to money, like he could not hear a single word that I was saying. I also got the feeling that he had no interest in the program. I ended our conversation by saying that it was sad that they were willing to let what could be an amazing program for youth in education for alzheimer's disease go because they didn't have the time to try and figure out what works.  


Myriam
Posted: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 12:40 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326


I'm so sorry, Younghope.
Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 1:49 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 18519


It is a shame. 

We know what can be accomplished if someone is dedicated to an issue.  Perhaps another person will come along with that interest and dedication and revive the Youth Camp program. 

You started a great program, Tracy.

Iris L.

 
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