by Katrina Smith
When a butterfly develops, it is not a butterfly immediately. There are steps that are taken leading into development. First the caterpillar crawls to and fro as an insect and then wraps itself into a cocoon. After being wrapped up for a period of time, the caterpillar turns into a beautiful butterfly. That is the concept local youth are being taught at Camp Discovery sponsored by the Humboldt Housing Authority. Camp Discovery is a summer camp geared with the purpose of teaching the youth the importance of being respectful youth with character. This year’s theme is, “Caterpillars to butterflies.
“Our organization decided to have a camp for youth to encourage them to spread their wings and become beautiful individuals,” said Phyllis Elliott, assistant director of Humboldt Housing Authority. “This camp was established to introduce the kids to things they would not normally be exposed to and to encourage them to learn new things.”
Every day the youth are being taught different character traits that are necessary in their lives. The outline for character building consists with lessons on kindness, responsibility, trustworthy, gratitude and integrity.
Camp Discovery began June 16 and will run through until July 16. The kids are on a schedule that definitely keeps them busy.
“When school is out, we wanted them to have fun in a learning environment,” said Elliott. “The director of the summer camp is Barbara Borner, a retired teacher from Jackson-Madison County School System who started volunteering over 10 years ago.”
“I love teaching the youth to be their best self,” Borner said. “When I started volunteering, I taught the kids etiquette.”
Each day, the participants are offered different activities such as team building, swimming and art to name a few. On Thursday, they learned about Haiku, a Japanese form of poetry. The writer writes a poem consisting of three lines and in the center under the poetry, creates art by taking a drop of Indian ink and blowing through the straw; and the art splatters across the page creating a unique masterpiece.
“Every morning, the youth has to place their cellphones at the cellphone station,” said Rene Johnson, assistant camp director. “We are focused on teaching them how to be confident when communicating. It is important to look someone in their eye when speaking to them.”
On July 16, Camp Discovery will celebrate with the community for parent’s night. For more information about the camp and other opportunities, please call the Humboldt Housing Authority at 731-784-9772.