Children Whose Families Are Suffering in the Opioid Crisis Anticipate a Healing Week at Claggett’s Camp Spirit Song
Thanks to parishioners at Christ Church, a young person whose family life has been upended by the nation’s opioid crisis will spend a week in early August at Camp Spirit Song at the Claggett Camp and Conference Center. As the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland said in a news release: “The Claggett Center partnered with the SpiritWorks Foundation to provide children an opportunity to lay down some of their heavy burdens and just be kids for a week.”
This is the second year of Camp Spirit Song and the first camp program of its kind on the East Coast. After its first season in 2019, BBC America featured it during Part III of a documentary series on struggles with opioid addiction in the United States. (View at 0:47 to 5:33 minutes and from 43:55 to the end for a look at the camp in-session.)
The diocese describes camp as a “safe space created for children to have fun while surrounded by caring, compassionate staff and peers who can relate to their experiences.”
How do our parishioners play a role in helping this healing to occur? It’s three-fold. At a recent Outreach Commission meeting, we approved a $1,000 donation to Claggett to cover the expenses of one child for the Aug. 1-6 camp. That includes room and board, program materials, and staff fees. The funds come from the commission’s Vestry-approved budget for 2021 which is derived from your pledges and contributions. So, thanks to all on behalf of our camper and the child’s extended family.
The second way that parishioners can be involved is to reach out to friends, relatives, and people whom you may know in the Mid-Atlantic region whose lives are touched by opioid addiction. Recommend a child or siblings, preferably entering grades 4 to 8, who could benefit from a week of fun and more. The activities include swimming, games, crafts, canoeing, a ropes course, and chapel. The healing includes daily small-group sessions led by Spiritworks Foundation counselors.
Or recommend a potential camper’s older sibling or another worthy teenager who could become a junior staffer. Or suggest an adult volunteer who has a background in addiction and recovery services. Please make your recommendations by email to Lisa Marie Ryder, Co-executive Director of The Claggett Center, at email@example.com or you can call her at 1-301-874-5147 Ext. 6388. The Claggett Center is located at 3035 Buckeystown Pike, Adamstown, MD 21710.
Thirdly, consider making an individual donation. Claggett is still accepting donations with the expectation of providing a camping experience for at least 30 children from Province III of the Episcopal Church. That is made up of a group of dioceses in Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.
Given the aftermath of a tragic overdose or the other ways that children can be harmed by their loved ones’ addiction, the motivation is simple. Provide children “an opportunity to meet God through the support of a Christian community, fellowship with peers who share a common experience, and time to rest and play away from the distractions of everyday life,” Claggett says in its 2021 Camp Spirit Song description.
A Follow-up on Fathers’ Day Supporters of Columbia Community Care
At Christ Church, our Racially Aware Group of Episcopalians (R.A.G.E) and the Outreach Commission ask parishioners to support Columbia Community Care (CCC). Some heeded the call by pre-ordering a Father’s Day meal for takeout at Bonheur Deli, which pledged to benefit CCC by donating a meal for every pre-order.
On Wednesday, the restaurant prepared 19 hot meals for CCC’s three distribution sites, which are located at Wilde Lake Interfaith Center, 10431 Twin Rivers Rd., Oakland Mills Middle School, 9540 Kilimanjaro Rd., and at Long Reach Village Center, Suite 9, 8775 Cloudleap Court, all in Columbia.
Another one-time opportunity to support CCC is to continue collecting diapers, baby wipes, sanitary and personal care items as well as adult diapers. Put them in the yellow bin marked “CCC” inside the Christ Church Parish Hall door. You can drop off items on weekdays until 2 p.m., but please call the church office at (410) 381-9365 ahead of time.
Donate Toiletries, Cleaning Supplies for FISH in its Yellow Bin
Organizers for FISH of Howard County request household cleaning supplies such as liquid dish soap, bleach, and cleanser. Also, the families who call on FISH during times of crisis could use personal items such as deodorant, shampoo, and bath soaps. At the present time, the pantry has an adequate supply of groceries.
SEAFARER’S Donation Requests
We could use your help in gathering the following items. Delivery is made and the date announced when the number of collections gets reasonably accumulated. Contact Carolann Sawyer with any questions.
Bible in modern English (or Tagalog, Russian, or Chinese)
Times/Newsweek/etc. up to 3 months old
Sports Ill/People/etc. up to 6 months
Cars/Computers/Consumers up to 1 year
Reader’s Digest up to a couple of years
National Geographics post-2000
Books (except for Bibles) are less often requested, but some seafarers do appreciate action novels, as well as picture books about Baltimore or the U.S.
Action/adventure DVD’s. Recent popular CDs.
Religious books (in easy English), DVDs, CDs; rosaries.
Clothing - men’s jeans, other sturdy pants (no bigger than XL) or shorts, T-shirts, warm outerwear, and non-skid shoes/boots (in good condition only), and gloves, hats, scarves, and warm socks
In general, if you have suggestions about ways to help the community, if you want to get involved, or if you need assistance, please email Christ Church Outreach at firstname.lastname@example.org. Your help is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.