Pastor asks for donations regarding summer camp that feeds kids
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - A last-minute setback has a Nashville church scrambling to keep its free summer camp going for hundreds of kids.
Bishop Marcus Campbell has run the United For Our Youth Summer Enrichment Camp with his wife for 17 years. They’ve never charged a dime, feeding camp-goers two meals a day, teaching them lessons, and taking them on field trips. In addition, they often send food home with their campers.
“Just to have someone to be an outlet, I didn’t have that as a kid, so kids’ ministry has always been my ministry,” Campbell said.
After one of the camp’s sponsors backed out recently, Campbell is now scrambling to find financial support for his camp. He’s hoping to raise $30,000 over the next two months, which would pay for food, teenage counselors, and field trips.
Campbell’s taken his campers to Schermahorm Symphony, a courtroom, civil rights museums, and college campuses in past years.
They also provide a curriculum that prepares campers for the next school year. Campbell likes to pay his teenage counselors because the job keeps them out of trouble and gives them a chance to mentor the youth.
“It never was about Bishop or his wife or his church. It was the community. We’re all united for these kids, and these kids need all of us to come together.”
Campbell fears without donations, he won’t be able to provide the summer camp experience his kids deserve.
He says the summer camp has also been a significant relief to parents, who may not have the money to pay for other summer camps around town.
“It would really break my heart real bad to know that I wasn’t able to do something to help,” Campbell said. “Always say if I’m going to die, I want to die empty knowing that I poured everything out of me into somebody else to help.”
Bishop Campbell hosts the camp at his church, The Church at Mt. Carmel, from June 1 - to July 29.
If you would like to donate, there is a GoFundMe set up by Campbell’s wife.
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