Moorelands Camp: A Place to Expand and Explore – Kaiya’s Story

Kaiya was nervous about starting summer camp at Moorelands Kids. She’d always been shy—the quiet, reserved child, afraid to step out of her comfort zone. But at Moorelands Camp, Kaiya could thrive. Embraced by welcoming staff and faced with new and exciting opportunities, Kaiya learned leadership skills that she can carry with her every day.

The tool box that Moorelands Kids taught Kaiya allows her to speak to people, use her words and gain confidence,” says Kaiya’s mom, Meheira. “She’s a leader now. Little kids look up to her.”

Camp is a place for kids like Kaiya to expand and explore. At Moorelands, Kaiya feels encouraged and empowered. “If we do something wrong, we learn from our mistakes,” she says. This learning gives her the confidence to try new things without feeling judged or worried.

Kaiya also participates in VITAL, Moorelands Kids’ after-school program for high school students. At VITAL and camp, she has made friends that she can talk to about camp, dining hall memories, and the leadership skills they’ve learned together. Kaiya calls camp “hidden learning,” because she has fun while developing new skills.

Kaiya has experienced drastic changes to her learning due to COVID-19. The abrupt changes have required her to adapt quickly to online school and the lack of social interaction with peers. Still, she is grateful that Moorelands Kids provided some connection when everything else felt so isolating. Her leadership development never halted, despite being away from in-person camp for a while.

“A leader is someone who takes a role to be responsible.”

– Kaiya, Moorelands camper and VITAL participant.

At Moorelands Camp, Kaiya learned the Moorelands Kids Habits &Qualities and now implements them in her own life. Now, she takes a leadership role and shows greater confidence among peers. When nobody else wanted to do presentations in her drama class, Kaiya volunteered. Even though she was nervous, she took a leap of faith and felt brave.

When asked what it means to be a leader, Kaiya says, “A leader is someone that takes a role to be responsible.” And according to her mom, Kaiya is doing just that!

Click here to see how you can help Send a Kid to Camp this year.

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