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Operation Purple
We just got back from a successful camp training weekend. We have such an amazing group of people for staff this year- we are so excited to kick off summer.

Camp will be starting next week, June 20, 2011 and we'll be kicking it off with operation purple. Operation purple is the military family association camp. Children whose parents have recently been deployed or who have returned can attend this camp. We are very honored to have been selected to host such a camp.

Our goal is to give children the tools necessary to cope with deployment. Throughout this camp, kids connect with other children, and come to learn that they too, are undergoing similar changes. The memories and friendships made at camp last a lifetime as well as the skills. 

Our goal is to help build caring, confident youth and future leaders. As part of our mission, we encourage children to learn new skills and to lead projects while at camp.
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Alumni events
Alumni, we would like to schedule a barbeque in which we can mingle and see what you have been up to since Camp Fire USA. However, we need to know a few things from you before we schedule this event. 1) we need updated emails, phone numbers and addresses to send you information, 2) we need to know when you will be available? (what is more convenient for you, ie. weekdays, weekends after 3:00pm etc) 3) we need to know if you are living near Rancho Cucamonga or farther away, so we can pick a central location. If you can email this information to jinouth@campfiretoday.org, that would be greatly appreciated.

WoHeLo
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Camp is right around the corner...
WoHeLo,

We are getting very excited our office to commence our summer camp experience! However, before we can head up to camp with the kids we need to be trained, so we know what we are doing. So for those who do'nt already know, camp training will be the weekend of, June 10-12, 2011. For more information, feel free to call our office and ask for Cameron or Letty.

We are just excited we cannnot wait. The count down for camp is 18 days! We hope you are just as excited as we are!!

-Camp Fire Team
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Newsletter!

Just wanted to let you know that we sent out our Spring Newsletter! This newsletter has all the information about summer camp, volunteers, our luggage tag event and much more. If you did not receive a newsletter please send a message to Carole Cross and request the newsletter via email. Her email is: carole@campfiretoday.org.

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Making a difference

Our goal is to help inspire our youth, to help them transcend into future leaders, but, how exactly do we accomplish this?

I have been speaking to several alumni these past few weeks and many of them reminisce about their time at our camp. Many recount adventures and friendships that they made. Often counselors tell me stories about youth they once had and how years later they are able to touch base with them. The counselors are able to find out all the wonderful things their previous campers are doing such as attending a university, working, and volunteering with other youth; often times the camper says they couldn't have accomplished their succesess without the advice/stories from one of our counselor(s). Our staff helps contribute to the growth of these youth by continously pushing them to move past their limits; we teach the campers fundamentals, so they can learn how to face challenges. We hope that these kids can learn from these fundamentals and carry them onto their future endeavors.

I don't know about you, but isn't that what camp is supposed to be about? Isn't it supposed to help inspire youth to push past their limits and aspire success? Well, I believe this goes hand in hand with our mission to build future leaders, and thus, I hope we continue to help shape the lives of youth for generations to come.

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Hold On to Health goes viral!!
WoHeLo,

As you know we are very excited about our Hold On to Health nutrition and fitness program and have expanded it one step further. We have been adevertising it through social media and were able to catch Healthy RC Living's attention and as a result they did a story about it!

Part of our goal with our Hold on to Health program is to help educate kids and families about eating healthy and how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. We teach them the tools neccessary to make healthy choices. Check out the link of the video below; start at the 12:30 mark to learn more about our fabulous program.


Check out our Hold On To Health Program. Go to the 12:30 mark on Healthy RC Living - Episode 22 on Vimeo! .
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Memories
WoHeLo,

One of our former alumni shared her memory of Camp Nawakwa and her summer camp experience back in 1987. Below is the post she made on our facebook page. We really appreciate her comment since currently we are striving to recruit children into our 2011 summer porgrams! Camp to us, means so much more than your average day camp. Camp allows us to form friendships and long lasting memories. Below is a perfect example of this.

Written by Michelle Niinisto:

"I was there for 6th grade camp in 1987 (I think). It was my one and only camp experience...I still have fond memories. My favorite memory was the "ditties" we had to sing before meals. Our cabin (12) had the best one..."Ooh baby, do you know what that's worth? Camp Nawakwa is a place on Earth! They say at camp, fun comes first, Camp Nawakwa is a place on Earth" What can I say...we were 11! :)"
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Hold on to Health Program
WoHeLo,

This week we have been promoting our Hold on to Health Nutrition and Fitness program via our online social media sites. Our Hold on to Health Nutrition and Fitness program helps feed 2,700 nutritious snacks to children in the San Bernardino County.

What's important about this program is that it provides a meal for students who otherwise wouldn't have one. This program helps feed children in low income communities. The children are so appreciative of these snacks and continously come back for more every day.

In addition to feeding nutritious snacks our Hold on to Health Program has expanded via our social network sites by providing fitness challenges and nutrition challenges to a wider community. Just last week via our twitter site we began out first fitness challenge week, where we provided daily fitness challenges for kids and parents. This week we began a nutrition challenge. If you want to join our challenges just follow us on twitter, twitter.com/campfiretoday.

Best,
Camp Fire Staff
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Camp Experiences
WoHeLo,

When we think of summer camp, we often hear the phrase, " the experience really changed my life," but most people never explain why or how. So I decided to pry further and talk to people who have experienced camp at Camp Nawakwa-their stories were fascinating and most involved a trivial element; the element that they can achieve success beyond the scope that each individual had previously anticipated.  

Often times I heard people describe that their counserlors helped shape their views but education and life. Many said they learned life lessons that they still carry today. An important life lesson that they learned was the significance of attending a University and attempting to change the environment that they lived in. Quite often, the kids we had at our camp, were unable to experience a world outside of their own inner-city-neighborhood. The majority of these kids lived in environments where education was not emphasized and other means of survival took precedence and as a result many of these youth did not believe that they could achieve success; to them college was just a dream. However, after attending camp, and realizing their similarities and commonalities with other youth from various locations, the youth became empowered and felt that they too could achieve success and could fulfill the dream of attending a University.

This empowerment is a significant result for us at Camp Fire; part of our mission is to ignite change in our youth and promote future leaders. So I ask you alumni, how many of you have had a smilar experience such as this? And how many of you would love to share your experience with us? Feel free to post how Camp Fire and Camp Nawakwa impacted your life.
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Contents of Alumni Email
For those Alumni who regurlarly check this blog but whose email we do not have, below is the email we sent to our Alumni on April 14, 2011. If you would  like to receive these emails please contact jinouth@campfiretoday.org with your information so we can add you to our listserv. Thank you.
 


WoHeLo,
 
Camp Fire has been really busy these past few months that we have barely had time to catch our breath! Below is a summary of the events we just had and the upcoming event we would love for you to participate in.
 
Past Events:
 
AIKD: We had our 15th Annual Absolutely Incredible Kid Day event at the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario, California. We were able to get adults to write letters of encouragement to children in the foster care program. These letters were delivered to the San Bernardino County Children Services department where they were distributed to children.
 
6th Annual Wine Lovers Dinner: We had our 6th annual fundraiser at the Ontario Convention Center and were able to increase our attendance rate. Wehad volunteers come in and help throughout the silent auction and even had a live band perform! The event was a huge success.
 
Camp Miss Independent: We had our first Camp Miss Independent retreat. Camp Miss Independent is a weekend retreat that aims at teaching young women between the ages of 14-18 financial literacy. We had 41 girls attend Camp Nawakwa and learn the various skills that are required to maintain a healthy financial budget. We are very excited to continue this event next year.
 
Upcoming events:
 
We have camp clean up weekend May 14, 2011 from 8:00am-3:00pm at Camp Nawkwa. We would love your participation in helping maintain Nawakwa clean and beautiful. We plan on cleaning for the majority of the day and will have a dinner and bonfire at night. If you're like me and want to come back on Sunday and would like to participate in the bonfire we can accomodate you in one of our cabins. If you would like to participate please send Jinouth Vasquez an email to jinouth@campfiretoday.org or a phone call at (909) 466-5878.
 
 
Thank you,
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Camp Miss Independent
WoHeLo,

April 8-10 we will be hosting our annual Camp Miss Independent event. This event aims at teaching young women between the ages of 14-18 about financial literacy as well as healthy living. Our goal is to educate young women about bank accounts, financial aid, student loans, credit cards, savings accounts and scholarships.

Additionally, we are having a university theme, which will highlight the following topics: dorm life, cafeteria food, freshman 15, time management, athletic teams, work study, resume writing, and dressing for interviews. We will also provide the girls with some gifts to take home that will help them with their future endeavours. Some items in this kit are but are not limited to the following: outfit for interviews, DVD workout, body spray, notepads, pens, informational forms for all the workshops, planners, flash/thumb drive and much more.

If you know a young women between the age of 14-18 have them register by April 5, 2011 at the following link: https://www.campfiretoday.org/Camp%20Miss%20Independent.
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6th Annual Wine Lovers Dinner
WoHeLo,

AIKD was a huge success! We were able to get 75 letters written at the Ontario Reign Hockey game on March 12, 2011! Currently, we are working on our Annual Fundraiser and Silent Auction and would love your help!

We are calling all Alumni, and asking you to donate your time for us on April 2, 2011 from 4:30pm-8:30pm. We need volunteers to man the auction tables as well as deliver the prizes to the highest bidder. This event will be held at the Ontario Convention Center in Ontario, CA.

If you are able to attend this event please contact our Camp Fire USA office at (909) 466-5878.
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AIKD
Dearest Alumni,

We have some very exciting news  regarding Absolutely Incredible Kid Day!

For starters, our interns were able to get the word out through media sources such as: Kggi radio, the Press Enterprise, Inlandarts.com, and through facebook and twitter. We will also be holding a letter writing drive on Saturday, March 12, 2011 at the Ontario Citizens Bank Arena. Once again we are partnering with the Ontario Hope Reigns in an effort to reach out to more community members.

Additionally, United Way and UPS have sent out emails to their employees and encouraged them to participate in this letter writing campaign. Our goal with this event is to reach out to more community members and receive over 200 letters. We hope you can help spread the word and/or join us on the 12th. If you cannot attend, please write a letter to a child you know and email a copy of that letter to jinouth@campfiretoday.org

Lastly, we will hold a raffle for participants who mail a letter to us. They will be eligible to win either a Bruinswick family pack (which is worth over $70), or a new bicycle! 
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Intern Training
Hello,

We would like to take the time to update you about our intern program. We currently have three interns interning for us and they have been very influential. Our interns have been helping us with our Absolutely Incredible Kid Day, Camp Miss Independent and our 6th Annual Wine Lover's Dinner event.

Currently the interns have been working on increasing our exposure in the community through social sites such as twitter and facebook as well as word of mouth. They have also completed their first task of sending out press releases for AIKD. Our goal is to teach the interns the fundamentals of event planning and all the aspects that go into event planning. We are truly grateful for all of their hard work!

We hope some day you can drop by the office and get to meet our interns.

Best,

The Camp Fire Team
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Alumni Day!!
Unfortunately we had to cancel this weekend's event on February 27, 2011. We will try and reschedule the event at a more convenient time for everyone.

With that said, we would like to hear back from you alumni about what kind of events you would like to see held. We want to know what interests you? What events would you be more willing to attend than others? And lastly, when is more convenient for you? ie. on a weekend, weekday etc.

We thank you in advance for making this effort and offering answers to these questions. We want to honor you alumni and would like to host events that you are interested in.

-Camp Fire Team
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AIKD
I was on a conference call today about Absolutely Incredible Kid Day, yes AIKD is just around the corner! Anyhow, in this call we discussed opening up AIKD to e-cards where parents can send heartfelt messges in an e-card rather than writing a letter.

The e-card will be a quick and convenient way for people who do not have much time to sit and write a letter. What do you think? Do you like this change or would you rather keep AIKD as it is, a letter writing campaign?
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Valentine's for Vets

We had an amazing event last Saturday at the Citizens Bank Arena! We were there to cleberate the fire and ice game as well as the Ontario Reign Hockey game and were able to promote our Valentine's for Veteran's event. We had a table set up in the alcove and were able to get children and adults to decorate valentine's cards for our veterans. The event was succesful and we were able to get over 300 cards! We'd also like to thank the Jazzercise ladies and the Rancho Cucamonga Chambers for participating in this event- they have brought in a lot of cards. If you are interested in making a card feel free to drop by our office by Friday, February 11, 2011. We will deliver the cards to the VA Loma Linda Hospital on Friday, February 11, 2011. And a special thank you to everyone that came out and supported our event.

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Eating out without pigging out
Hey Alumni,

Just wanted to share some healthy tips when dining out. We all know the hardest part when dieting is maintaining your diet while dining out. But lucky for you, we have done some research and have found 8 strategies to not only curb your appetite but also save you money!

Rule number 1: eat a light snack before you go out. A light snack can be anything from a piece of fruit to some veggies-these will help take the edge off any hunger you may have and thus allows you to make smart choices when you order.

Rule number 2: Don't feel like you have to eat everything on your plate. Your stomach will let you know once it is full, so listen, and when your stomach says full STOP eating!

Rule number 3: Have an appetizer as an entree. The portions of appetizers are sufficient enough to fill you up.

Rule number 4: Split an entree with your friend. In most restaurants a main course is enough for 2 people!

Rule number 5: Don't order anything with the "value meal" or "supersize" title. Choose regular sized meals and use the extra money to buy a piece of fruit for your dessert.

Rule number 6: Have your waiter hold the chips and salsa/bread till after your meal is served, chances are you won't eat as many chips/bread.

Rule number 7: Ask for dressings, sauces and toppings on the side. This way you have control of how many calories you are eating.

Rule number 8: Finally, dessert. We all have a sweet tooth, but did you know, your sweet tooth can be satisfied with just one or two bites? So share one dessert with the entire table.

*Special thanks to Healthy Home News.
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Alumni Day!!
Alumni,

We have a special day planned for you in February so SAVE THE DATE! On February 27, 2011 from 3:00pm-5:30pm we will be having an Open House and Potluck Party at our Camp Fire Office, we hope you can make it.

Our Address is:
9037 Arrow Route, Suite 140
Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730.

We have had a lot of changes and would love for you to come see them. We'd also love to see you and hear how you have been. We look forward to seeing you.

WoHeLo
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What's in the Works
Fellow Alumni,

We have some very exciting projects in the works here at Camp Fire. Our chapter has been working on several projects that we will soon see in February, March and April. For starters, we will be honoring our Veterans in the event Valentines for Vets. We have a booth reserved that the Citizens Arena during one of the Ontario Reign's game on February 05, 2011 from 5:30pm- 7:30pm, if you are in the area come join us and write a Veteran a Valentines Card!

In addition to this February event, we will also be at another Ontario Reign game. On March 12, 2011, we will be settting up a booth and getting parents, siblings and individuals to write letters to children for our annual Absolutely Incredible Kids Day campaign. We will also have a table reserved at WEE Care Learning Center on March 17, 2011 for this campaign! If you would like to participate we'd love to see you at either of these venues. For more information, contact jinouth@campfiretoday.org!

Lastly, April is filled with a lot of excitement. We will start off the month with our 6th annual  Wine Lovers Dinner and will continue the month with our Camp Miss Independent event. More information about these events will be posted on this blog as we near April. We hope you can join us at any of our upcoming events, we'd love to see you.

WoHeLo,

Your Friends at Camp Fire
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To Remember or Not to Remember that is the Question
Today I was reading the Tajar Tale, How the Tajar got his Tucks, and I realized that I did not know what a Tajar was. As I read this Tajar, I learned that a Tajar is something like a tiger, and something like a jaguar, and something like a badger.

After learning about what the Tajar looks like, I learned that if you see him you will forget what he looks like, but if you see him twice, you will forget to forget what he looks like. Does this mean you will remember what he looks like? If you forget to forget something, is that the same as remembering? Seems like we have something to think about when it comes to this Tajar. What do you folks think?

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Updates
Wohelo Fellow Alumni,

Camp Fire USA Mt. San Antonio council has had some changes and we'd love to update you on them. For starters we have now joined facebook and twitter! For up to date updates check out our sites at:

http://www.facebook.com/campfiretoday
http://twitter.com/campfiretoday

In addition to these technological changes we have also made some changes that will affect the alumni. In December an alumni committee began meeting to discuss further alumni involvement and potential events honoring alumni. Currently we are seeking more alumni to join this committee. This committee meets bi-monthly. We hope to have your participation and hope to establish a stronger alumni base. If you are interested in joining the alumni committee or simply would like to be in the alumni network email, Jinouth Vasquez at jinouth@campfiretoday.org

Lastly, if you would like your stories or experiences to be posted on this blog please email Jinouth Vasquez at the above email address, she would love to hear from you. Thank you for all of your time and dedication alumni!
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Alumni Meeting
All Camp Fire alumni are cordially invited to the alumni meeting this Saturday, November 6th from 10:00am to 11:00am at the Camp Fire USA office. Refreshments will be served.
9037 Arrow Route, #140, Rancho Cucamonga.

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