Last year, we told you about YEA Camp (that’s, Youth Empowered Action Camp), a summer program for young movers and shakers who want to change the world. Well, as spring blossoms begin to bloom, it’s time again to consider your summer plans — particularly if you have kids.
I’ll make this easy for you: 1) If you have kids and you’re interested in encouraging them to speak up for what’s right and good (and, uh, hopefully you do), sign them up for one of two YEA Camp sleep-away adventures (one in Ben Lomond, CA and the other in Corbett, OR); 2) If you don’t have kids yourself but happen to know of any poking around, forward their folks info on YEA Camp; 3) If you’re reading this with wide-eyes and your heart is beating a little faster because you’re thinking OMG-What-An-Amazing-Concept!, consider applying to volunteer with this remarkable organization.
Here are some things you should know about YEA Camp:
- It is totally vegan with a strong emphasis on supporting local, plant-based agriculture.
- The one-week program is for kids ages 12-17.
- Even for kids who have never before been involved in an activist campaign, they will benefit from YEA Camp. The way it works is that the child chooses a social justice cause to focus on (such as animal rights), develops a plan of action, and learns the tools necessary to implement a campaign. All of this, of course, is while working closely with staff.
- There is a strong emphasis on developing and increasing the self-confidence of the camper, so not only are they given the tools to be prepared to stand up for issues that are important to them, but they can feel good about themselves in the process.
- There are workshops on arts activism, starting a school club, theatre of the oppressed, and nonviolent communication. (Pardon me as I plotz.)
- One of the activities is a free market, where the kids trade in items they no longer want for others’ used treasures. (I’m seriously in love.)
Needless to say, if we care about the future of our planet and all its inhabitants, we need to be spending time and energy empowering tomorrow’s activists. The only downside of YEA Camp is that attending it is not a mandatory part of childhood (and adulthood, for that matter).
If you’re due for some goosebumps, check out this video about YEA Camp:
Photos: YEA Camp