Dear Friends of Happy Trails,

At the close of each camp session, we throw a party for all of our campers and staff to commemorate the week.  It is always a bitter sweet occasion.  There is dancing, laughing, singing and hugging, but there is also sadness and tears. 

The next day marks the end of camp.  The boys and girls will slowly board the buses to leave the beautiful mountains of Idyllwild.  They will leave the warm embrace of Happy Trails.  Many will return to foster homes in which they have little comfort or stability, only to be moved within the next few months.

During our final dance last year, campers exchanged “camp grams,” where they had the opportunity to share their feelings and favorite memories.  At the end of the evening, I received a “camp gram” from Courtney, a 12 year old camper who has attended Happy Trails for the last five years.  The note said:

“Thank you for starting this program called Happy Trails!  It has changed my life.  Because of you, my fear of being in foster care vanished.”

I share Courtney’s “camp gram” not only to show the tremendous impact of Happy Trails, but also because these words are meant for you, the Happy Trails’ supporters, staff and volunteers.  You have cared enough to give a deserving child in foster care a life changing experience.  On behalf of Courtney and the hundreds of other children we serve, we offer our sincere gratitude for your ongoing support.     

With Warm Wishes,

Susan Abrams,