What is Camp SHIELD?
Camp SHIELD stands for Sheriffs Helping to Inspire and Encourage through Leadership Development. The camp will provide a safe environment with appropriate role models, ideals and values. Camp SHIELD will help empower the children and arm them with the necessary skills to become successful and respectful adults.
The week long camp will consist of planned activities, as well as team-building activities, that will help build self-esteem, leadership and decision making skills. Campers are expected to share their input and ideas while they are learning the importance of the camp’s values.
Camp SHIELD is geared mostly towards children who are in the transition period between 5th and 6th grade. Local law enforcement officers, school personnel and community members will assist in helping to identify which children in the community would benefit the most from attending Camp SHIELD. There are several circumstances as to why a child would be selected to attend the all-inclusive camp. The child has possible worked extremely hard during the school year, he or she may have come upon a difficult time in their life, somebody could have referred the child because he or she could benefit from a positive experience, or they could be a camper from the previous year that has returned due to last years’ experience having such a huge impact on their life. The only people who will know why the camper is attending the camp are the decision makers. Counselors, Assistant Counselors and other campers will not be provided this information.
Counselors of the camp will consist of law enforcement personnel, which at the beginning of camp, the youth will not be aware of this. Counselors will help lead activities in regular civilian clothing for most of the week. They will interact and spend time with the children while teaching them the values of the camp. On the last day of camp, the officers will reveal their true identities to the children at the awards ceremony. The children will then realize the people they were having fun and joking with all week were actually cops. Not only does the camp provide strong values, but it also helps shine a light on the positive side of law enforcement.
Camp SHIELD will be held at Rock Springs Ranch in Junction City. The Camp is all-inclusive and will be fully funded by private contributions as well as by many fundraisers hosted by the Geary County Sheriff’s Community Involvement Team. The camp staff will operate on a volunteer basis, so all funds raised will cover the cost of supplies and equipment needed.
It is our hope that Camp SHIELD will leave a lasting impression on the youth and citizens of our community.
The Geary County Sheriff’s Office Community Involvement Team will implement Camp SHIELD in the Spring of 2019 as long as the donation goal of $25,000 is reached. That donation will cover all costs including all “start-up” costs that are needed to run a successful camp and continue it each year.
In 2015, the Geary County Sheriff’s Office sent several of it’s employees to Wyoming to be trained in the operation of Camp Shield. The Deputies and Corrections Officers that attended were able to interact with the children and see the amazing impact it has during the week long adventure. Below are a few photos taken during their trip.
If you would like to donate to the Community Involvement Team using PayPal, click here.
Check out our YouTube video with Sergeant Aaron Parker and Deputy Terry Walker by clicking here.