YEA Camp

YEA Camp Hero Day 12: Claire – An Activist Role Model

Happy New Year! We’ve reached the final day, Day 12, of our 12 Days of YEA Camp Heroes series! We are so inspired by ALL of our amazing YEA Campers — and there are so many campers doing great things who we will continue to feature throughout the year.

As a reminder, 12 Days of YEA Camp Heroes  is part of our year-end fundraising camp-aign. Your tax-deductible donation helps us train and support more young leaders to make a difference on an important social issue.

Today’s YEA Camp Hero is Claire, 16-year-old activist superstar who came all the way from Michigan to attend our Massachusetts camp last summer.

10536818_10203707040451513_7411826565970753363_o (1)Claire was already very dedicated and involved with animal rights causes before attending YEA Camp but wanted to take her efforts to the next level. On her application, Claire wrote “I would like to attend YEA Camp to meet other people with the same ideals I have as well as to learn how to spread awareness about animal rights in my town. I would like to learn how to properly communicate with people about issues and make a change in my
community.”

We are so inspired by all that she has done since YEA Camp! She has been on fire and done so much since YEA Camp, we truly cannot keep track of it all or remotely cover everything in the scope of this short post.

10686851_789229701115680_782154477610850338_nClaire has organized and attended rallies at the State Capitol to advocate for wolves – which made the news – as well as to protest the circus, to raise awareness and funds for farmed animals, and so much more.  She volunteers at an animal shelter, has attended local hearings about animal issues, spoke out about a hunting contest taking place at her school, and about a hundred other things – at least!

Just this week Claire launched Charity Fizz, where she sells bath fizz balls that she hand-makes to raise money for charity. While Claire devotes most of her efforts to helping animals, her first nonprofit is called Well House, a local homeless shelter in Grand Rapids because seeing people who are homeless”has always affected me. I just can’t imagine not having a place to call home, not knowing were my next meal would come from.” People are animals too!

We know Claire would be doing amazing things with or without YEA Camp, but we asked the question: what difference did YEA Camp make?

We were inspired that Claire said that if not for YEA Camp… “I would not have taken so many opportunities to help animals or tried so hard to get to animal rights events. I wouldn’t have known what to say to my classmates who came to me for help transitioning to veganism. I also would have wasted energy trying to reason with 0% people at the Ringling Circus protest.” We love that Claire came to YEA Camp to improve her communication skills and she has! And we especially love that last piece, which references something we talk about in our communication workshop – that it’s sometimes not worthwhile to argue or spend time talking about an issue with someone who completely disagrees with you (“o% people”).

As we wrap up our 12 Days of YEA Camp Heroes series, we are just so proud of Claire and all of our campers for everything that they’ve accomplished to make a difference in our world. We are thrilled to play a part in that!

Just some of our amazing returning staff!

Thank you for supporting YEA Camp!

Your donation to YEA Camp enable youth like Claire to take their passions to the next level of effectiveness and action to change the world. You can donate here.

We hope you’ve enjoyed 12 Days of YEA Camp Heroes, and we appreciate your continued support now and always.

If you missed the other YEA Camp Hero stories check them out and be inspired! There was Day 1 about Megan  in Massachusetts raising money for the homeless, Day 2 showcasing Joyce in New Jersey speaking out about bullying, Day 3 highlighting Maddie  in Colorado advocating for animals, Day 4 about Lia from Washington state working to address the stigma of mental illness and reducing teen suicide, Day 5 about Roberto from North Carolina speaking more confidently about progressive causes, Day 6 about Ana from California advocating for women, workers, animals, and more, Day 7 about Jia Hui’s animal advocacy, Day 8 about Shelby’s advocacy for gay and transgender rights, and Day 9 about Leah from Connecticut helping animals at her local shelter, Day 10 about Sage from California who is trying to educate his peers on current events, and Day 11 about Bernie and his efforts to help the environment. Wow, that’s a lot of heroes!

We hope you are inspired as we are by these stories that our supporters have helped make possible.

If YEA Camp sounds like the perfect place for you or a change-making 12-17 year-old you know, send them to YEACamp.org and hopefully we’ll see you or them this summer!

Happy new year!