Last month, YEA Camp launched its first ever Volunteer-a-Thon, as a way to encourage people to get more involved in community service and activism while raising money for the YEA Camp Scholarship Fund.
Thanks to the support of two generous donors, all donations raised through the end of the year are being TRIPLED. This is so important to us for a few reasons. First, 51 of our 100 campers this summer were on some form of financial aid. Seventeen of those campers received full scholarships. Overall, we granted $66,400 worth of financial aid.
We strive to make YEA Camp equitable for all who want to be there, regardless of socioeconomic status. If you want to change the world, we want to help you do it. Because of this, the YEA Camp Scholarship Fund is a critical part of our mission. Without it, so many of our campers would simply not be able to have this life-changing experience.
Okay, so financial aid is important, but what is this Volunteer-a-Thon anyway?
Some organizations encourage their community to raise money through a 5k run or by selling magazines. We wanted to put a twist on the traditional asks by tapping into our activist networks.
The Volunteer-a-Thon was created as a way for people to raise awareness about a cause that is important to them while also doing more service and activism. By publicly sharing what they are working on, our community is being held socially accountable to follow through with the changes they want to make and the activism they want to do.
Last week, we shared a post by YEA Camper Mia Jay-Pachirat about her project of creating an environmental zine that talks about climate change and provides simple solutions for people living in New York City (where Mia lives)! You can read more about her project and experience at YEA Camp here or donate to her activism here.
So what exactly are people doing?
Dima Bischoff-Hashem is a 16-year-old high school student from New Jersey. At YEA Camp, she defined her Issue of Importance (IOI) as animal rights. After camp, she started attending animal rights marches and vigils and volunteering at a farmed animal sanctuary.
Currently, Dima is starting an animal rights group in her hometown with the goal of supporting other farm sanctuaries and animal rights groups.
Dima says, “YEA Camp taught me how to go about activism, how to talk to people about causes I care about, and how to create a doable, step-by-step plan of action.”
To learn more or support Dima, click here.
Audrey Watson attended YEA Camp this past summer and is a passionate advocate for environmental justice. She is currently volunteering with her local chapter of the Sunrise Movement, a youth led organization dedicated to stopping the climate crisis while providing a just transition for everyone.
Audrey is also working on co-founding a nonprofit organization with her friend called New Jersey Students for Sustainable Schools.
She says, “This organization will work to help empower youth and guide them to use their voices in order to make their schools more sustainable and environmentally friendly.”
To learn more or support Audrey, click here.
Danielle Holtz is a senior at the University of North Carolina, Asheville. She was a YEA Camper in 2015 and has since been a counselor-in-training, counselor, Operations Manager, blog editor, intern, and YEA Camp Youth Fundraising and Publicity team Founder.
Danielle’s activism centers around food. She serves as her school’s Sustainable Food Procurement Analyst, creating sustainability criteria for institutional purchasing. Her work as a Campus Representative for the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) means she puts on eight animal rights events per semester!!
She is also the President of Active Students for a Healthy Environment, where she works to reduce campus food waste, promotes animal rights, and offers leadership and guidance to the Sunrise Movement committee.
Danielle says that, “Without YEA Camp, I have no idea where I would be. It truly was the most life-changing experience I have ever had, and I love being able to share that with 12-17 year olds from across the country (and world!) each year.”
To learn more or support Danielle, click here.
How you can be involved
It’s not too late to create a page. You can learn everything about creating your own activist project here.
If you can’t create a page, we would still love your support. If you are able, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to YEA Camp. As a reminder, all donations are being TRIPLED thanks to the support of two generous donors.
Please help support our programs by sharing this link with others. Your support makes camp accessible for activists around the world.
Want to join us next summer?
We recently announced the dates for YEA Camp 2020 and are currently running an Early Bird special. Register by the end of the year to receive $250 off your registration. Do you know someone who would be great for camp? Nominate them here!