Members of Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in Bethel came to Camp Friendship recently to both entertain and spend time with campers who have special needs.
The group, comprising 35 high school and middle school students, performed different Native American-themed activities for the campers; including lacrosse, arts and crafts, bingo and more. After their activities were done, the church members stayed to spend time with the campers and learn more about the camp.
Camper Amber Feigh said that she really enjoyed the activities, especially the ones where she got to color. She also said that she’d like it if Our Saviour’s Lutheran came back to camp again.
Brad Mills, who led the group, said that the students paid to come and were very excited to visit the camp. He also said that after church members had visited the camp two years earlier, they knew that they had to come back again.
One of the church’s members who visited the camp two years ago is current Camp Friendship staff member Jessie Biser. She credits that day for introducing her to Friendship Ventures and says that she is “very grateful.”
The idea for the Native American-themed activities came from the fact that the church was having a week dedicated to learning about Native American culture. Some examples were coloring, making totem poles, playing bingo with Native American words and pictures and music.
The event was designed to share what the students and members had learned about different cultures as well as to spend time with new people.
Camp Friendship is located on Clearwater Lake near Annandale.
Friendship Ventures, a privately-funded nonprofit organization, offers therapeutic and recreation services to nearly 3,000 children, teens and adults with disabilities each year. Camp and respite care programs are offered at three sites: Camp Friendship near Annandale, Eden Wood Center in Eden Prairie and Camp New Hope near McGregor.
Participants have autism, cerebral palsy, attention deficit disorders, Down syndrome, sight or hearing impairment, physical disabilities or a combination of disabilities. For more information, visit www.friendshipventures.org or call 800-450-8376.