Skip to comments.'Little Warriors' Surf Camp to Host 100 Military Children
Posted on 05/08/2009 4:43:48 PM PDT by SandRat
| WASHINGTON, May 8, 2009 Surfs up! Military children of wounded or fallen servicemembers will be able to catch their first wave this summer, thanks to Freedom Is Not Free, a California-based troop-support group.
This is the third year that Freedom Is Not Free has sponsored a surf camp for children of wounded and fallen servicemembers, retired Marine Corps Lt. Col. Jay Kopelman, executive director of Freedom Is Not Free, said. In the past, this camp was an all-sports camp, combined with enrichment sessions. I thought that a surf camp made a lot more sense. The venue is always available, and I happen to have caught the surfing bug after moving here a number of years ago.
Kopelman said he hopes the surf camp will give the military children an opportunity to learn a new sport and connect with others who have similar experiences.
There's something very peaceful and life-affirming about being on your board, even when the surf isn't particularly great, Kopelman said. This camp gets the kids away from home and the reminders of what has made their lives a little less happy if even for just a day.
The surf camp lasts five days, and each group of 20 campers attends for one day, which includes three and a half hours of instruction. Freedom Is Not Free will provide water and lunch for the campers, and Surf Diva Surfing School will give campers rash guard, ball caps and T-shirts to commemorate their experiences.
Wahoo's Fish Tacos, a local restaurant, will provide burritos every day for the kids, Kopelman said. At the end of each day, as an added treat, all campers will get boards.
Sector 9 Skateboards and INT Softboards will give Freedom Is Not Free boards to raffle, and Bessell Surfboards is designing a custom Freedom Is Not Free surfboard.
I heard about this through a friend, said Tim Bessell, owner of Bessell Surfboards. I didnt hesitate. Our servicemembers are on the front line for us every day. Their kids are paying a price when they are away or when they dont come home. Their kids are their legacies. This surf camp will be an awesome experience for them.
Kopelman said parents interested in sending their children to surf camp should call or send an e-mail to get more information on applying. The camp is only for children of wounded or fallen servicemembers.
I've contacted the San Diego Armed Services YMCA to solicit potential campers and the family readiness officer for [the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force] at Camp Pendleton, Kopelman said. Because the population of military children from which to choose is so large right here in San Diego County, I hadn't thought about paying for an out-of-state camper.
It wouldn't be out of the realm of possibilities, he continued. In fact, that might be something to actually promote as we go forward.
Children of America’s finest! BTTT!
Please visit this website set up by one of our fellow Freepers. Please remember the children of many of America’s finest—our Special Operation troops who we owe so much. Please share with others:
WOW! Thanks for the link. BTTT!
Will visit the website and pass the info to others! God bless the troops/families and the camp!