Letters from Camp
Testimonials from Youth and Caregivers
Happy Trails has allowed me to be my true self and allowed me to represent the person I was scared to let others know about...the person who grew up jumping from foster home to foster home and scared that the next family would send me away because I was no longer cute. Happy Trails gave me an opportunity to show other young girls that there is more than the fear of not being accepted or loved. It created an environment that I felt that no matter how messed up my past had been that I can show others that we are the ones that control our futures.
-A. K., Counselor
Happy Trails is more than a camp. It is a home and a family. While in foster care, not many things felt permanent and there was always this fear that everything I encountered would only be temporary. However, I always know I can count on Happy Trails. I became a member of Happy Trails at the age of 10 and I am currently 17. Happy Trails has been my backbone and has made a big difference in my life and I hope that my efforts will do the same for other campers. I see Happy Trails as an opportunity for kids to enjoy themselves while creating new memories, new experiences, and new relationships that will last a lifetime.
-Andreah, Junior Counselor
I have been with Happy Trails for 9 years and while all the programs in my life began to fade away the one that stuck with me was Happy Trails for Kids. It has become my family. The thing that I love about Happy Trails is that we all have experienced the foster care system in some way. With all of us coming from something similar we can build a bond. When l think of Happy Trails, I think of community- we are one big community that keeps on growing. Starting Happy Trails has been one of the greatest things in my life… and has changed my life.
-Anthony, Junior Counselor
I have four foster children who are siblings. They range from 8 - 17 yrs of age. We’ve lived together for 6 yrs. They’ve grown with me. They’ve also grown with Happy Trails in ways, I would not have been able to provide for them. Yes, I take care of them, they have home cooked meals every day, I study with them and I take them on outings. But Happy Trails for Kids gives them a community of like-minded children with whom they can relate to and join forces with to enjoy, experience and expand their horizons. They’re able to have new adventures, see part of the world and it’s opportunities through fun and educational outings. You can’t buy self confidence, but somehow Happy Trails for Kids builds it on so many levels.