Camp Receives Grant for Sensory Garden
By Alex Peters, Director, Camp Wawbeek
At the beginning of 2019, the American Camp Association Mid States Conference announced they would once again be offering the Mid States Innovates Competition. Mid States Innovates is a grant program hosted by Mid States and ACA Illinois that allows camps to pitch new, creative, or innovative programs for a chance to secure a $1,000 grant for implementation that coming summer!
When we learned of the opportunity we thought about what Easter Seals Wisconsin Camps might need. After a few brainstorming sessions, we decided on a sensory garden and the planning process began! We researched sensory gardens, their benefits, and how this would
positively impact our programs. A small grant proposal was written and submitted to Mid States. Once it was accepted we began planning for the conference presentation which included a budget, mission statement, and goals/outcomes of the innovation. Once at the conference, all prospective grantees gave their presentations, the audience voted for their favorite proposal, and Easter Seals Wisconsin won!
Staff and AmeriCorps members took on the project during our summer orientation and built it from the ground up! The project was great for team building and brought everyone together for a common purpose. Throughout the summer the sensory garden was well utilized. Many campers enjoyed having a place to escape, play, and explore the different elements of the sensory garden. We are thankful for everyone who made this possible for our camps!