Young People: Inspiring Stories
"Take pride in how far you've come, have faith in how far you'll go"
One Camper's Success Story
Three years ago, Steve, a fifth grader from midcoast Maine, was living in fear. Steve’s mom suffered from anxiety, so Steve had never been exposed to many things and was afraid of heights, swimming, crossing bridges, trying new foods, you name it. But Steve was lucky. His family worked with social worker Flower Noble, who knew him well — and knew about Camp POSTCARD’s work with Maine fifth and sixth graders.
Thousands of Happy Campers
Twenty two years ago Camp POSTCARD was founded to provide a fun, life-changing and skill-building week at camp for deserving Maine 5th and 6th graders. Today it is still run by Volunteers of America, the Maine Sheriffs’ Association and the Maine D.A.R.E. Officers Association. The name Camp POSTCARD stands for Police Officers Striving to Create and Reinforce Dreams, which is the foundation of the camp program.
A Healthy Model That’s Contagious
The “Fit, Fed, and Fun for Life” program, launched in 2011 at Camp POSTCARD in Poland, Maine, was such a success that Volunteers of America has been using it as a model for its other service areas and client groups. The Program was designed to help combat childhood obesity in Maine. The program was created with a generous grant from the National Recreation Foundation.
it's never too early to change lives
Back in 2002 — not so long ago — there was a young Maine girl named Shannon who was taking up with the wrong kinds of friends, sneaking out of her home, and testing limits with her parents. But Shannon was one of the lucky ones. She had a D.A.R.E. (“Drug Abuse Resistance Education”) counselor at her middle school who encouraged her to volunteer to attend Camp POSTCARD as a junior counselor.
"the best week of my year"
Camp POSTCARD is made possible by the hundreds of volunteers who make a week at camp a dream come true for Maine 5th and 6th graders. All the cabin leaders are Maine law enforcement and public safety officers. They volunteer their time to make a difference in the lives of kids as well as their own, and are often surprised at how much they learn.
Young People and Seniors discover Connections
Denise Theodoras has seen something wonderful — over and over: “Young people come here, they meet our residents, and then suddenly everyone discovers each other: Hey, we’re all just people! It’s a great moment,” she says. For the past 18 months, Denise has worked as the Resident Service Coordinator at Paul Hazelton House in Saco, Maine. The House is one of Volunteers of America’s affordable senior housing communities across Maine and New Hampshire.