Camp Chicagami is located on the beautiful shore of Pleasant Lake in Eveleth, MN, and has been serving our youth and community for nearly ten decades. Next year marks our 100th anniversary, but with COVID-19 restrictions requiring closing of camp this summer and curtailing significant income sources, we are in danger of not reaching this incredible milestone and preserving this beautiful historic and important youth development resource for our kids.
Camp Chicagami serves all children including those with various physical, emotional and developmental disabilities in our regular summer programming without labeling, restricting or segregating them in any way. We understand that ALL children have needs unique and special to them as individuals. This spirit of inclusion is one of the many things that makes Camp Chicagami essential to creating and maintaining a vibrant community culture.
Camp Chicagami has provided thousands of children with an important personal growth experience that gets them off their screens and outdoors. Our summer programs provide area youth with positive role models to help them find fun ways to learn new skills, including self-confidence, social confidence, positive social interactions, and healthy risk taking. Teamwork, open communication, respect, reliability, and accountability are all values which are taught and encouraged during the Chicagami summer camp experience.
A permanent closure of Camp Chicagami means that . In fact, Dr. Michael Unger, PH.D., a family therapist and researcher at Dalhousie University, says "Summer camps are perfect places to help children optimize their psychosocial development. Looking at those experiences from the vantage point of my research on resilience, I know that camps help our children develop great coping strategies.” Today more than ever, kids need all the opportunities they can get to develop resilience to better cope with an ever-changing world.
Over the years, many families have been restricted in their ability to send their kids to camp because of income limitations. Camp Chicagami normally uses charitable gaming income, donations, grants, and facility rental income to offset the cost of summer programming and provide affordable camp experiences to all Northern Minnesota children. However, with the closure of camp this summer due to COVID-19, the lack of income to provide scholarships for next year and keep the facility operational, this historic camp may close. This would severely reduce opportunities for children of all income levels and abilities to experience a singular and critical growth experience.
Please help us preserve this important community resource by making a financial donation in any amount you can. Donations will go towards keeping camp operational until we can open our doors, including the cost of basic monthly bills and keeping one staff on site to maintain the premises. $5,000 a month is needed to ensure the property remains in functional condition to be sure we’re ready to open as soon as current restrictions are lifted. Our goal of $30,000 will help us get through the rest of 2020 and hopefully resume business as usual next summer.
Please also help us by sharing this link with your networks and encouraging people you know who value the summer camp experience as an important youth development opportunity to make a donation. On behalf of the Camp Chicagami Board of Directors, staff and !