For the past 25 days, we've told you why you should support the Couch to Camp Campaign presented by kajeet.
We've impressed on you the importance of providing free soccer and arts camps for kids who aren't able to attend the regular camps many of us grew up with.
We've told you about how important it is for kids to keep their minds and bodies engaged during the summer months.
Yada, yada, yada.
But what do the kids think? Are DC SCORES' camps really as important as we make them out to be?
Well, over the past two years of offering these three camps, we've gotten the chance to ask some of the participants what they would be doing if not for DC SCORES summer camps.
Here's what they've had to say:
“I would probably just be at home sleeping and watching TV," said Jhoana H.
“Working with my dad, sleeping at home,” added Jorge S.
To make sure the kids weren't simply coming to camp because it was something they could do, we asked them about their experiences learning soccer skills, doing art projects and going on fields trips.
Did they really enjoy such things? Were they getting a lot out of the camps?
“It’s fun, athletic and it makes me stay healthy,” said 9-year-old Justin C.
“Because it’s fun,” 7-year-old Yao said simply, listing why he attended camp. “Because it’s soccer.”
“I never have second thoughts," Emily C. said last summer on a day when the temperature reached 100 degrees, "when it comes to summer camp."
Emily's brother Christian piped in: “It’s better than doing nothing at home. You’d just rather come outside and play in the heat.”
Even Charlie Z., who doesn't attend a DC SCORES school, showed up in the extreme heat to the camp -- no one is turned away from any of our camps.
“I think it’s really good because it teaches you a lot and it makes you work hard in the hot sun especially. So I think people who don’t know about this should come if they want to learn about soccer.”
Added Kara B. of Tubman Elementary School: “I like learning new things and knowing that I can get better at soccer going against middle schoolers."
So there you have it. This is just a small sampling and we can't guarantee that every camper has the same experience, but by and large the kids who show up on the first day of camp are still coming six weeks later, ready for a fresh project, a new field trip, or to learn a new skill on the soccer field.
And they all agree -- even in 90-plus degree heat plus the infamous DC humidity, being outside with peers learning cool stuff beats sitting in a house watching the tube.
If you can, please support this opportunity for over 200 kids. We think you know the details by now.
Help us reach the $10,00 goal. We're not far off. Visit the Couch to Camp website by March 31.
Thanks for your support!