The Middle School/Teen Program will hold its annual spring break camp for sixth to twelfth-grade students from March 11 to 15 at Dru Pippin Youth Center.
Each year’s camp has a central theme around which many of the activities revolve.
“This time we came up with pandemic, zombies and survival,” said Francis Becker, homework lab tech and camp supervisor. “The majority of the camp is going to be focused around survival skills.”
According to Becker and the camp’s other supervisor, Sondra Patrick, these skills include first aid, water purification, knot-tying, rocket construction and hand signals.
Soldiers from the Better Opportunities Single Servicemembers program will be leading some of the lessons March 12.
“I have my medic representative on board — he and a couple of other medics are going to give a first aid class,” BOSS President Sgt. Rodolfo Najera said. “Just a typical ‘what happens if I get a cut.’”
Although students will follow a coordinated schedule, with most days beginning at 7:45 a.m. and ending around 3:30 p.m., there will not be handouts, assigned homework or restrictive classroom settings. All learning will be hands-on, Patrick said.
Two field trips are planned to the historical Missouri State Penitentiary and an escape room in St. Robert.
Patrick said the field trips have been one of the students’ favorite features in years past.
“(They like) getting to see things that they probably wouldn’t otherwise,” she said. “We hear that a lot, ‘Oh, we’re going there? We’ve never been there before.’”
Najera participated in one of the Youth Center’s previous camps, a lock-in last summer. The students left a lasting impression on him, he said.
“A bright young kid taught me how to play the piano for a bit,” he said. “You’d be amazed how smart and talented these kids are.”
Becker urged those interested to consider joining.
“It’s going to be a real good time,” he said. “I believe that the youth will have a ton of fun and they’ll learn a lot.”
Students interested in participating must be registered with Child and Youth Services.
A maximum of 24 students can be accommodated and camp fees are income-driven.
All camp activities were approved by Dru Pippin Youth Center Director Andrea Ogle. For more information, call the Youth Center at 573.596.0209.