Camp Noah is a specialized camp program for children affected by disasters. Red Cross grant funds are supporting these camp events across the Texas Gulf Coast. The grant recipient is Lutheran Social Services of Minnesota, an organization with years of experience working with children impacted by disasters nationwide. “Camp Noah gives children the opportunity to tell their stories, grieve their losses, and find hope for the future,” said Kim Dettner, LSSM Senior Director for Disaster Services.
With Red Cross grant funds, afterschool sessions began in March in Vidor, Texas, located in heavily- impacted Orange County. Camp Noah starts each day with a quiz, singing and dancing and then activities move on to include puppet shows, dramatizations, drawing, and handcrafts. Activities and discussions emphasize that the children are special, each of them having unique gifts and talents that make them strong during the recovery process. In addition to teaching the children how to prepare for and stay safe in future storms, Camp Noah teachings includes resiliency skill building and identifying the children’s hopes and dreams for the future.
“Day two of Camp Noah focuses on ‘unreal worries’ and ‘real worries’ and that helps children be better prepared for what will happen later in their lives,” explains Jonah Adamcik, Site Leader of Camp Noah, “and only through our partnership with the Red Cross we are able to reach out to these children,” he adds.
Michelle Tubbleville, Executive Director of Orange County Disaster Rebuild, was excited to see the five-day series begin in Vidor: “Camp Noah is a program our #hurricaneharvey affected children need, and we are very appreciative of the Red Cross for funding it in Orange County.”
At the conclusion of Camp Noah, children from Vidor repeat as a group the preparedness phrase: “Even when the storms come, I am not scared because I am loved, and because I am prepared!”
With a goal of fifteen Camp Noah events, each serving 50 children, LSSM has scheduled camps in Lumberton, Port Arthur and Port Aransas, some of the communities most impacted by Hurricane Harvey.
For information and registration to upcoming camp events visit: https://www.lssmn.org/campnoah/camps/upcoming-camps (Fifty positions available per event)