From Camper To Camping Instructor
My name is Karina, I am a University student. And camp has shaped my life.
I first went to Christian camp when I was 12. I come from a non-church family. At camp I immediately appreciated the relationships. I enjoyed the attitude of staff to campers. Staff were committed and sacrificed their time and energy to serve campers.
As a camper I understood I could influence other children’s lives by showing them they could be loved just for being the way they were. So I decided I wanted to serve at camp. My first staff position at camp was at age 15. I played the role of a penguin who travelled in the mountains. And then throughout the day I had to appear among the campers as a penguin and talk to them about the theme of the day. Later on I served as a sports leader and as a program leader.
Looking at committed camp leaders in my camp I understood that sacrifice was part and parcel of every Christian’s life. You sacrifice not only the resources you can replenish (money and energy), but also the resource that cannot be replenished (time). And it was at camp that I understood that the time spent at camp couldn’t be considered as time just spent. You get inspired at camp, you build relationships with people, you draw nearer to God, you get satisfaction from serving others.
Now as a camp leader I love the fact that I can use the gifts and talents that God gave me. By doing this I can influence and change somebody’s life for better. I can influence somebody’s value system and the development of a child, who would later on become a servant of God. The best motivation for me is that some day I will be able to see how God will have developed the seeds I have sown into the children, how my campers will have changed, how their behaviors will have changed, what decisions they will be making in life.
At church I am engaged in running a children’s club in a village a few kilometers from the town I live in. I am also engaged in our church day camp. I organize events for children at the stadium. I organize Easter and Christmas celebrations for children in our church.
Thanks to camp I have many friends, I have learned to multitask, as well as to delegate and not to try and do everything by myself. As a result I have more time for rejuvenation. Besides, camp has helped me to become a friend of God, to get to know Him better and to understand that He is the One who can make my life better and more fulfilled.
I have completed three levels of the CCI-Ukraine instructor training course. I am passionate to see young people engaged in our camp effectively, so I am doing my best to learn how to help them do it. Today I help train our camp staff, and I am excited about it.