Until last year, Lorissa and Corey had never taken their family camping. Raising three small children on a single income, they’d never had the time or the money to make the trip.
But last year, after they were referred to the Summer Family Camps by workers in Bissell Centre’s daycare, they decided to give it a try.
They had already been using a few of Bissell Centre’s other services, including the daycare, Family Closet and Employment Services; but it was their first time accessing the four-day family retreat offered at Bissell’s lakeside property at Moonlight Bay Centre.
“It’s a great place for families to bond and come together and love each other… it’s brought us closer together.” – Lorissa and Corey
Lorissa and Corey with their three kids, Nehemiah, Lily and Kori, spent four days and three nights camping in the lakeside cabins. Bissell Centre volunteers took care of all the campers’ needs, including preparing all the meals and planning fun activities for the children.
“It was the first time the kids had ever played badminton,” said Corey, “and they really loved it.” Nehemiah, Lily and Kori also enjoyed swimming in the lake. “They used to be scared to go into the water by themselves,” said Corey, “but now they’re getting braver.”
What Corey and Lorissa were most grateful for was relief from the stresses of everyday life while they were at camp: they enjoyed the peace and relaxation of being together without having to worry about bills or errands or groceries.
“Having to worry about those little things takes all kinds of time away from the time you could be spending together,” said Lorissa. “When you’re at camp, you have that time to just focus on family.”
“It’s worry-free for those four days,” agreed Corey. And according to Lorissa,” “It was so relaxing and peaceful. I loved it!”
Bissell Centre’s Summer Family Camps are made possible by your donations for families who are struggling.