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Christ Church Outreach News: May 25, 2023

Help Claggett Camps Offer Getaways to Youth, to Special-Needs Adults, and to Children From Families Coping with the Opioid Crisis

You can play an active role in making summer special for several groups of campers who will travel to scenic Adamstown, Md., home of the Claggett Camp and Conference Center.

The Episcopal Diocese of Maryland describes Claggett as “a place where our community of love comes together to grow and learn in spiritual harmony with one another.” You can learn more about its history, going back to the Fifties, and its present-day purposes in an article posted Aug. 3, 2022, on the diocesan website.

If you desire a hands-on role in the fun and spiritual growth that occurs on the 268-acre site, with its view of Sugarloaf Mountain, you can:

● Spread the word to families in the region whose children may wish to sign up for a week. Sessions are available for youth who have completed second grade all the way up to those who recently graduated high school.

● Tell those whom you know have been affected by the opioid crisis. Starting in 2019, Claggett has offered Camp Spirit Song, described as a “safe space created for children to have fun while surrounded by caring, compassionate staff and peers who can relate to their experiences.” Claggett partners with the SpiritWorks Foundation to serve children in grades 4 through 8 who live in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C.

● Consider volunteering, so that you can enjoy the bucolic setting while helping others at the same time.

Claggett is especially eager to recruit volunteers from churches in the diocese for Special Challenge Camp. Held in late July for a group of independent adults with developmental disabilities, the session is in such demand that it has a waitlist.

“It takes many hands for camp to run successfully, and we have volunteer roles available for both short-term help, such as assisting with setup for special events and supporting campers with daytime activities, and full-week volunteers, who stay at Claggett for the week to help campers with day-to-day life at camp,” says Programs Director, Rita Yoe.

Special Challenge volunteers arrive for pre-camp training and preparation on Saturday, July 22 (alternative make-up training is on Saturday, June 17 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.). Campers arrive on Sunday, July 23, and are picked up on Thursday, July 27, by 2 p.m.; volunteer responsibilities end that day at 4 p.m. In between, activities include nature hikes, swimming, fishing, canoeing, arts and crafts, and daily chapel.

Please make a decision soon because, among other things, volunteers must complete a background check. It’s due one month in advance, or by June 23; Yoe says the typical process is rapid. To obtain a copy of Claggett’s volunteer information sheet, please email

For several years, Christ Church has made it possible for two campers to experience Claggett who might not otherwise be able to afford it. At the Outreach Commission meeting on May 8, we approved a $1,700 donation to Claggett toward expenses. The amount of $700 covers the cost for one person at Special Challenge Camp, with the rest going to subsidize a child attending Camp Spirit Song.

The funds come from the commission’s Vestry-approved budget for 2023, which is derived from your pledges and contributions. Thanks to all on behalf of our campers – and their extended families.

To personally support camps at Claggett, you can do so on its website, through the Bishop’s Appeal, or by directing a Christ Church contribution to “Outreach/Claggett” on Realm or on the memo line of your check.

For parishioners who would like to visit Claggett, there are two special opportunities next month related to the Claggett Barn Grand Re-Opening. One is the consecration of the Delaplaine Barn, which takes place on Saturday, June 17, from noon to 3 p.m. Together the bishops of Maryland and Washington will conduct a worship service of thanksgiving and will commission the camp staff. The second is the ribbon-cutting for the barn, to be held Thursday, June 22 at 10 a.m. Both events are free but require RSVPs.

Columbia Community Care Takes a Holiday, Requests Future Volunteers at Sites

Columbia Community Care (CCC) announced that its three distribution sites will be closed on Saturday, May 27, for Memorial Day weekend. More information about its summer plans can be found on the CCC Group on Facebook.

On subsequent weekends starting June 3, volunteers are needed on Saturdays to help distribute free groceries, produce, baby supplies, and household essentials. Sites are located at the Wilde Lake Interfaith Center, 10431 Twin Rivers Rd.; Long Reach Village Center, Suite 9, 8775 Cloudleap Ct., and at The Barn in Oakland Mills Village Center, 5851 Robert Oliver Place, all in Columbia.

Recipients are welcomed on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to noon, or when supplies run out, and volunteers are encouraged to register for their slots at each location. Those shifts last from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Signups for volunteers are posted through the end of the year for each site: Wilde Lake, Long Reach, and Oakland Mills.

CCC plans a “Free-For-All” version of a flea market on Sunday, June 4 from 9 a.m. to noon at its pantry building, 10750 Little Patuxent Parkway in Columbia. Given the conflict with Sunday morning worship, why not attend the 8 a.m. service or delegate a neighbor to handle your unwanted merchandise? Pass along the CCC instructions: “Please bring your free items, your own table and chair, or sign up for a parking space and open your trunk.” Participants also are asked to donate non-perishable food or personal hygiene items.

At Christ Church, Leigh Smith is our representative who takes parishioners’ donated items to CCC. Please continue your support by collecting diapers, baby wipes, sanitary and personal care items and adult diapers. Put them in the yellow bin, marked “CCC,” inside the Parish Hall on weekdays when the church office is open or on Sunday.

Celebrate Wellness, and Help Support DreamBuilders

Temple Isaiah, our partner in DreamBuilders, is inviting us to join in their MatzohBall Run on June 4th. It’s a fundraiser, whose profits go to help support DreamBuilders, Grassroots, and HopeWorks. In addition to the family fun run/walk, there will be health screenings, wellness booths, and plenty of events to entertain. Please visit the MatzohBall Run link above, or read all of the details on the Christ Church website.

Donate Snacks, Crackers, and Cookies to FISH in Bin on our Breezeway

Organizers for FISH of Howard County are continuing to ask for cookies, crackers, and snacks to fulfill their shopping lists. The yellow bin is back in its spot between Old Brick and the Parish Hall. Thanks for your contributions to our neighbors in need.

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 Your help is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.


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