Founded in 2008, Camp River Run offers a summer camp and day camps throughout the year for young people ages 7-17 who are coping with life threatening illness or disabling/ongoing medical conditions. This year, the organization is seeking volunteers for its summer camp, which runs July 21-24 at Hidden Paradise located just outside of Fairfield. Amanda Stone, the camp’s director, said that this is the first year at Hidden Paradise and the organization will be offering all new activities at the summer camp.
She said, “This year we plan on gold mining, having water fights, Olympic games, a lasso competition and will offer an all-abilities ropes course and more. Each of our days are themed, so our activity team plans camp activities accordingly. This year we will be having Hawaiian, Olympics/sports, Wild West — Call of the Wild and Closing Ceremonies. All our activities are planned with each camper in mind so that all abilities have the option to participate in every activity.”
Stone explained that there is a one-to-one ratio of counselors to campers. So far, there are 26 campers registered and only nine volunteers, so Camp River Run is actively seeking more volunteers so the camp can go on.
“If we don’t get enough counselors, we can’t have camp,” Stone said.
The camp is seeking adults who like working with children with special needs and are able to commit to the duration of the camp.
Gregory Loos, senior associate attorney at Taylor Law Offices, said that his involvement with Camp River Run has been incredibly rewarding so far. As a relatively new resident of Boise, Loos was looking for a way to give back to the community around him, and it was apparent that the organization was something he wanted to be involved with.
“They embodied one of my core beliefs: the circumstances of a child’s birth should not preclude them from the experiences so many take for granted,” Loos said. “Knowing that this camp is about taking kids who are dependent on their parents for daily life and giving them an opportunity for self-discovery, but still providing the volunteers and structures necessary to keep them safe and healthy, I immediately became inspired to dive in and help in any way I could…I could not be prouder to be a part of Camp River Run.”
Stone explained that business partnerships and donations are key to Camp River Run’s success. So far, St. Luke’s, Bagne Family Foundation, Northwest Farm Credit Services in Twin Falls, Renew Commercial Roofing & Paint and Boise’s Kiwanis Club are all providing camp support via donations and grants. Holland & Hart, Jitasa, PayneWest Insurance and Taylor Law Offices also have employees who are involved with Camp River Run.
“While financial contributions from local businesses are always welcome and sorely needed, any business owner reading this who has high school or college-aged children who are willing and able to donate four days of their time for a good cause are encouraged to contact Camp River Run,” Loos said.
The organization provides necessary medical training and certification that will last beyond the duration of the camp. Camp River Run is also in need of medical supplies and is seeking donations from local businesses that may have surplus inventory. Other items for the camp like snacks, drinks and activity items and camp décor are also needed to pull off a successful summer camp.
“We are always happy to partner with venues, caterers, food trucks or other service industry professionals to create events that generate revenue for both our organization and the businesses that host or supply goods for our events,” said Loos.
As Camp River Run looks to the future, the team said it hopes to continue providing young people a safe space to grow and have fun in an environment that encourages connection. Volunteer and donation pages and more information can be found online.l