What Camp Meant, and Still Means…

From the College Settlement Archives: 1969

We were extremely pleased recently to receive a letter from former camper and current donor, Susan Holliday. She attended College Settlement Camp—still known at that time as the Farm Camp—for eight years. Susan sent us photos she took during her last summer at camp, 1969.

Susan also sent a copy of an essay she wrote in 1969. It was published in The College Settlement Farm-Camp Newsletter. In it, she expressed how she felt about camp at that time. Here’s an excerpt:

My talk is based on what our camp really stands for. Now, I know what you’re thinking… that camp stands for waking up at 7:30 in the morning and going to bed at 9:30. That it stands for the food in the dining hall, the frogs in the lake, and the giant mosquito bites that always seem to appear from nowhere. But the actual idea this camp stands on and the idea the counselors and the rest of the staff try to stress is the fact that the world is filled with many people who have different opinions and views, some good, some bad, and some that cannot be changed no mattter how hard we try. This camp is here for the main purpose of establishing understanding between the many people of different races and religions, so they can form their own opinions and make friends without bias. With this knowledge each person attains from the stay at Farm Camp, they will have more consideration for the people they will meet later on in their life.

Now that she has had a few years to consider what she thought when she was 14, here’s how Susan reflects on what she wrote about College Settlement:
It’s [the essay] pretty faded, nearly 50 years later, but I’m impressed at how well I expressed my thoughts at 14. And the feelings haven’t changed much either. Camp made a huge difference in my life. I learned so much, and it was a time I looked forward to all year. I continue to donate so you can make the same difference to children for years to come.
Thank you for your good work.

And thanks to you, Susan!