Sunday, May 06, 2012

These Kids Have to PAY to Come to Camp?

We are knee deep in Summer Camps.  Recently we did Camp Sonshine at Calajunan, the city trash dump site where some of the poorest kids in Iloilo live. These kids were charged fifteen pisos to go to Camp Sonshine.

What do we think we are doing charging these kids to come to camp! How can we do this to some of the poorest of the poor?

Camp Sonshine works with Hope Center, a local church plant in Calajunan started by Pastora Pilar and Go To Nations missionaries Nate and Abegail Shuck. Most of the kids who came to camp already come to the weekly ministry at Hope Center.

The leadership of the church wanted to teach their kids that they are valued, and that nice things also have value. Usually you don't value things that are free. The ministers at Hope Center did not want to give a handout, they wanted to teach their kids about stewardship and value. So they charged the kids to come to camp.

They challenged them to do odd jobs, find money on the ground, and save their pisos and their centavos so they could go to camp. Over 100 kids were able to save up and attend camp. Several of the kids were sponsored by their older siblings. For the tuition cost of camp they got three days of Camp Sonshine fun, lunch (oftentimes their only meal of that day), snacks, crafts, and their very own 2012 Camp Sonshine Philippines t-shirt.

Fifteen pisos is less than half a U.S. dollar.

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