Day 2 was one for the books!
We started off day two with cheerful chanting and jolly laughs. The amount of energy the campers had before breakfast was incredible and it made us super excited to see what that energy would be like once they had food in their tummies! (Breakfast, by the way, was eggs, bacon, hash browns, and fruit, which we cannot seem to cut fast enough - the kids are going through bowl after bowl of freshly cut watermelon, cantaloupe, grapes and more!)
All of the cabins participated in hours and hours of fun activities, from swimming to soccer they really did it all! We sent out a team of volunteers to check in on the cabins throughout the day to see how they were enjoying themselves, and here were some of their favorites:
This special activity was offered in partnership with Mindfulness First, a Phoenix-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to educate and empower children, adults, and professionals in mindfulness based life skills that increase awareness, resilience, kindness, connection and creativity. We were so grateful to have the opportunity for our campers to benefit from the expertise of the wonderful people at this organization. This activity focused on boosting campers' self-confidence and enhancing their self-expression through the creation of self-portraits that incorporated used materials into the works of art they created. The campers utilized both natural materials such as egg shells and sand as well as recycled papers and plastics to create their self-portraits. The use of all different textiles really enhanced the mindful elements of the project by inspiring the campers to consider texture as well as visual beauty into their creations. Ms. Emily was an exceptional teacher and we were so grateful that she drove all the way from Phoenix to inspire the artists inside each and every one of our campers and to help them embrace themselves as valuable and capable individuals. It was especially inspiring to see and hear from the campers all about their passions and personal aspirations for the future!
For many of our campers, their first time visiting the 20+ foot rock wall can be both exciting and a bit intimidating. We work hard to train our counselors and volunteer staff in the art of inspiring our campers to try new things (even if it seems a little scary at first). Why do we do this? Because there is nothing more exhilarating for a camper than when he pushes himself beyond the confines of his comfort zone to successfully climb to the top of the wall and ring the victory bell!
The trust and support amongst the campers and counselors at this activity is so apparent at the rock wall, with everyone cheering on the climbers as they work to get to the very top of the wall. It really is one of the most inspiring things we have ever seen!
Art & Frames
The art shack was a full house all afternoon as we had campers on one side working on frames while the other side was working on making graduation caps!
We are always super excited to see what the campers’ frames look like once they have been decorated and painted! The kids had a blast with this activity and once the frames are finished drying we will place a picture of all of the campers and counselors in their cabins inside the frame to take home with them after camp. Getting to take home this photo is a great way for our campers to remember their Camp Swift experience for years to come! (Some of our counselors still have their cabin photos from when they were campers hanging in their rooms!)
Going along with our college theme this year, our art program gives campers the opportunity to think about their aspirations for the future by making their very own graduation caps! We told the campers that the sky was the limit with how they could decorate their caps but of course, they took it far and beyond simple decorations. Some campers incorporated colleges they like, others drew pictures illustrating careers they hope to have in the future, and some made a Swift themed graduation cap followed by autographs from their cabin mates!!
Our campers never cease to amaze us with the immense amount of energy and creativity that they put into everything they create or do. As you can see we were especially inspired today by the campers' interest in developing their skills in self-expression and the ability of art to have the potential to change both our campers and our community here at Camp Swift by encouraging new ideas, practicing self expression and commuting to being interconnected!
As always, be sure to check us out on Facebook to see photos throughout the session!
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Swift Youth Foundation