Post by Katy Glitsos, House Manager and Volunteer Coordinator
Brave. Strong. Resilient. These are the words used when asked to describe the kids we serve at Crescent Cove. But what about their siblings? What defines the kids who are alongside their brothers and sisters day in and day out? You guessed it! Brave, strong, and resilient. This couldn’t have been more apparent than what we saw at our Second Annual Sibling Camp!
In mid-June we opened our Home to the siblings of our Crescent Cove kids, past and present, providing a two-night opportunity to experience all of the fun things Crescent Cove has to offer. Patient rooms transformed into spaces like Firefly Fortress and Bluebird Bunker where 21 campers blew up their air mattresses next to their soon-to-be best friends. Reunions were had as some campers were returning for a second year. For others, it was their very first time sleeping away from home.
Once settled, there was no time to waste! In less than an hour, fingers were stained from tie-dying and friendship bracelets adorned wrists. In true Crescent Cove fashion, bellies were FULL of snacks and homemade meals prepared by volunteers.
Crescent Cove means something different for each and every sibling who attends camp. For some, it’s a place where their sister gets to come and do special activities. For others, it’s where their brother passed away. At camp, in accompaniment with fellow siblings, a place that was once seen as unknown or scary is put into a new perspective. From pontoon boat rides and yoga, to Ziggy’s Art Bus and pet therapy, campers experienced firsthand what a typical respite stay looks like for our Crescent Cove kids. We also offered special opportunities that only campers got to do, like canoeing! Five seasoned canoe volunteers lead kids across Twin Lake with paddles in hand. For many of the kids, they had never been in a canoe! The pride they had in themselves as they unbuckled their life vests when arriving back on shore was tangible in the air.
For Crescent Cove siblings, tomorrow’s stability is not guaranteed. Living a life of ambiguity requires stamina, and these kids do it in stride! Their ability to adapt is truly admirable. While visiting with the kids throughout their time at camp, it’s endearing how much they love their brothers and sisters. As they laugh and giggle with chocolate on their faces, the campers share an unspoken bond — all while sitting around a bonfire.