Guam Summer Camp Spans Pacific
by Alisha Sanders –
Guam’s indigenous people, the Chamorros, share their little island with people from every corner of the earth–and the Guam Corps’ three summer camps exemplified the very diversity that makes Guam unique.
Diversity brings challenges, however, especially regarding language. “Some of the campers spoke little, if any, English,” said YPSM Glory Guerpo, Guam Corps’ summer camp coordinator. “We have bilingual campers and staff to help out with this, but we also encourage the kids to learn about each other’s languages,” she said.
The Guam Corps focused on another kind of diversity to unite the campers–a diversity of activities. By locating the camps on one of Guam’s sandy beaches, the campers were only a few minutes away from the island’s two mountains and a few steps from crystal-clear Pacific waters. Even though the campers live on the island, many have never experienced all it has to offer. According to Capt. Dave Harmon, Guam Corps commanding officer, camps are a foreign concept to the children, as many have never spent a night away from their families.
Campers not only got to swim and kayak in the ocean, but also hiked to the tops of mountains and through the jungle to hidden waterfalls. They visited a ranch, where campers rode horses and played with other animals. Activities also included Bible studies, crafts, and games.
Summer service corps and Micro-nesian summer youth team members helped put on the camps and activities.