Camp Kaya 2018

Through a generous grant from the Norman J. Stupp Foundation – Commerce Bank, Trustee, the DOORWAYS Residential Program was able to offer a five-week summer camp for the children living at the Family Residential Complex. Fifteen children aged 5 to 14 attended the camp, which started on Monday, July 9, and just concluded on Thursday, August 2, running Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

In addition to a variety of arts and crafts—such as making your own tie-dyed shirts and painting—Camp Kaya also welcomed special guests. Representatives of the University of Missouri Extension/Missouri Botanical Garden taught a class about gardening, seeds, and fruits. Campers planted vegetable seeds and monitored their growth over a two-week period, hopefully gaining an interest in gardening as a fun activity that can create family time as well as fresh produce for the household.

Mad Science of St. Louis, along with their Imagine Arts Academy, collaborated to offer eight exciting hands-on activities to engage imagination and creativity. With their theme of “putting the fun in science,” Mad Science of St. Louis combines education with science-related entertainment to captivate campers while also encouraging exploration and a desire to learn more. Camp Kaya participants learned about the science of magic and illusions, with the chance to perform a Houdini-style escape; tackled the curious cube; and uncovered the source of sounds through sonic waves. Activities included creating vibrations and using sound effects. School supplies and a new bike where incentive to affecting camper attendance. At the closing ceremony, all campers received a backpack full of schools supplies to start the 2018 school year.

Summer opportunities such as Camp Kaya also foster teamwork, encourage personal growth, and enhance self-confidence. For children in low-income, low-service areas without nearby resources, summer camps provide a safe place for fun, socialization, and learning. They also address hunger issues. Camp Kaya included meals and snacks, which helps assure the children have adequate nutrition during the summer—often a time of hunger when school is out. “Summer meals programs across the nation directly address this need,” noted Opal M. Jones, president and CEO of DOORWAYS. “But statistics show that out of the 22 million children receiving school lunch assistance, only 4 million are getting a summer meal due to challenges related to distance, limited transportation, and unsafe neighborhoods, for example. Thanks to the Normal J. Stupp Foundation – Commerce Bank, Trustee, DOORWAYS was able to provide a fun, interactive learning opportunity for the children, and assure they had enough to eat over the summer.”

Through support from generous donors, DOORWAYS now celebrates 30 years of service to people in the City of St. Louis and 117 counties in Missouri and Illinois. Last year we provided a new beginning to 3,100 individuals. For more information, contact Karen Carpentier at 314-328-2704 or



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