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Service Camp - back for 2022!

It was wonderful to be back this year helping give some of Cornwall’s most deserving children a week-long summer activity break at Service Camp. Each camp is attended by around 22 ‘Little People’ under the age of 11, and every child has a dedicated buddy for the week in the form of their ‘Big Person’, aged 14-25, to help them get the most out of their time at camp.

Sunday was a very busy day for the Big People and the adult team - there’s always lots to do on the first day of camp! Tents had to be set up, crafts made, sleeping bags and mats sorted out and all the supplies for the week transported and unpacked. Everybody worked really hard, and by Monday morning we were ready for the Little People!

Not all of the Little People have been away from home before or stayed in a tent, so it is always a little nerve-wracking for them when they arrive at camp. However, they all had a Big Person waiting to show them around, show them to their tent and get started with some crafty activities and games. Soon, everyone was getting to know the group they’d be spending the week with.

This year, our theme was ‘Under the sea’ so our Octopi, Seahorses, Clownfish, Starfish, Turtles and Sharks spent the first day settling in and unpacking.

A week of exciting activities and trips followed! Every day was bursting with things to do,

including swimming, scavenger hunts, arts and crafts, Trethorne Leisure Park, Woodlands

Adventure Park and the much-anticipated ‘It’s a Knockout’ water game at the end of the week. I think all of our Little People experienced something new at Service Camp, whether that was finding the courage to go on a steep drop slide for the first time (it may have been some of the adult leader’s first time on a drop slide too!), singing songs around the campfire, trying a s’more, or getting soaked whizzing down a waterslide.

The Big People work tirelessly throughout camp to give the Little People an unforgettable week - each Big Person stays on site during the week and is a one-to-one buddy during the day. By Friday evening, we couldn’t tell if the Big or Little people were the most tired after such an action-packed week! The last day is always highly emotional as the Little People say goodbye to their new friends and some tears are always shed. However, we hope every Little Person has taken home some great memories of their time at camp - and a framed picture of their group standing in our swashbuckling pirate ship photobooth, too!

The adult volunteer team, led by Cheryl Smith, were fantastic. This year we marked Cheryl's 25th year at Service Camp, what an achievement! We had a new cook who was great but of course we missed all the 'old' leaders.

The adult volunteer team work hard all year to make sure Service Camp is a wonderful week for all. They’re already putting their heads together to plan an exciting Service Camp in 2023 (themed around ‘Outer Space’). See you next year!

by Letty Simmons


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