Keep the Campfires Burning
Two years ago in 2020, we were wrestling with the impact and burden that COVID brought unexpectedly to camp, both programmatically and financially. We lost 75% of our retreat ministry and were unable to run summer overnight camp. Day camps ran successfully and for that we are extremely grateful.
Advance two years to 2022 and we ran all our summer camp programs and 80% of pre-pandemic retreats. Weekend camps over the 2022 are definitely smaller in numbers than previous years, but we were blessed to fill most of our weekends this fall.
The summer camping season was a true blessing. Over 1200 campers participated in all our summer programs from June through August. This includes day camps, overnight camps, family camp, grandparent/grandchild weekend camp and our mission’s trip weeks. The mission’s program includes our staff working with church youth groups providing a free week of day camp to trailer parks in Rochester. But the real blessing is that we were able to find staff. Many camps across the country found it difficult like we did to find all the staff they needed. If Camp Victory had been able to hire 20 more staff like normal, we would not have been forced to close sessions in order to maintain camper to counselor ratios. Therefore, we registered about 300 fewer campers than last year. We are working hard to recruit all the staff needed for 2023.
Some important milestones from this year:
- 70 campers made a decision to trust Jesus Christ as their personal Savior
- $44,964 was raised in scholarship funding, helping 157 children experience camp
- 2 new full-time staff were hired in 2022; a new summer Day Camp Director, Brian Kettering, and a Retreat Director, Jeremiah Osterlund
- We had over 200 volunteers this year. Volunteers play a critical role in keeping this ministry alive and functioning.
Capital Funding Needs:
While programmatically things are bouncing back, our facilities are showing their age. Most of Camp Victory’s buildings are 17 years old and have repair needs.
Capital Expenditures planned for 2023 include:
- Replace the air conditioning units in the last two A-frame cabins. $5,000
- Replace the last two A-frame cabin upstairs windows, $6,000
- Replacement camp pickup truck, $20,000
- Replace the 15-passenger van, $30,000
- Remodel the health center & craft hall, $20,000
3 ways to donate:
- Camp Victory Website – see below for options
- Mail or deliver a check- 58212 403rd Ave, Zumbro Falls, MN 55991