Royal Family KIDSMore than 3.5 million cases of child abuse, abandonment and neglect are reported every year. 408,425 children now live in foster care in the United States. 128,000 of these children are between the ages of 6 and 12. By the time an abused, abandoned or neglected child is rescued by Social Services and placed in the foster care system, the damage has already been done – damage that can last a lifetime. Foster children are the most at-risk children within the United States. But you and I know the impact of compassion and commitment in the life of a child…
Since 1985, Royal Family KIDS has lifted children from the deepest pits of despair and given them hope toward a better tomorrow and brighter future. We do this through our Camp, Club and Mentor programs. Royal Family KIDS Camp is the nation’s leading camp program for abused, abandoned and neglected children ages 6-12. Royal Family KIDS Camp is built around a working relationship between Royal Family KIDS, social services and our sponsoring camp churches, but it is entirely locally volunteer-driven.
At Camp…One counselor for every two children provides for lots of individual attention from a trustworthy adult.
All the games, crafts and activities are designed to be fun and ensure each child succeeds – self-esteem issues loom large for children of abuse, but at camp, everyone is a winner!
We share the message that God loves these children and they are valuable. This is great news for children who feel that nobody loves them.
We are a family at camp. There is even an Aunt, an Uncle, and a camp Grandma and Grandpa whose important role is to tell stories, deliver snacks and hugs, give encouragement – just like a “real” family!
Some of our kids have never had a birthday party – but at Everybody’s Birthday Party one night at camp, every child is presented with cake, presents and a real celebration!
The best part? Life-long Memories!
MENTORS…Special bonds are established during the week of Royal Family KIDS Camp. After camp is over, that bond is carried over into a one on one mentoring relationship through our Club & Mentors Program. Participating campers are matched with trained mentors from the Royal Family KIDS Camp team. Mentors and their mentees spend four hours together each month doing fun activities and building healthy adult-to-child relationships. This relationship is built upon:
- Trust – the camper and mentor have already met and established a level a trust from their five days at camp together
- Safety – every mentor is interviewed, trained, and background checked
- Commitment – each mentor, mentee and caregiver commit to nine months of Club and one on one mentoring time
Roughly 55% of foster children in the US have had three or more placements. 33% of foster children change elementary schools five or more times, losing relationships and falling behind educationally.*
Therefore, having a consistent mentor is VITAL.
CLUB…Throughout the school year campers and their mentors attend a once a month Club meeting. Club is a place where a camper can reconnect with many of the participating staff members from Camp as well as build lasting friendships with the other campers who are being mentored.
At camp, relationships and trust are established and those bonds carry over into a mentoring relationship. This model- Camps*Clubs*Mentors has had a powerful impact on the children: over 90% of our Club kids are still meeting with their mentors the last day of club each year!
To learn more about how to start a Royal Family KIDS Camp through your church, please contact Glenn Garvin at Glenng@royalfamilykids.org
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