Barefoot Republic Camp

I grew up in a bubble. A white, Midwestern, Christian, middle-class bubble. I had an amazing childhood, and am making (from what I can tell) many good choices for my life.

But when I went to college, I realized the enormousness of this bubble. Nothing wrong with the bubble…it’s just…who wants to be unaware of the world around them? This awakening, so to speak, led me to spend two of my college summers working (and living) at the Milwaukee Rescue Mission. I learned about diversity, culture, love, poverty, joy, and strengthened my faith. The days were long, but oh how those summers flew by.

As I mentioned yesterday, and as some of you may already know, I have a friend (hey, Candace!) who works full time for Barefoot Republic Camp. Barefoot is a Christ-centered multicultural camp — as far as they know, the only camp in the country that combines these qualities. Kids from varying ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds come together in one place. And something very special happens at Barefoot. A kid with a three-piece monogram luggage set and a kid with a trash bag learn that they have commonalities. The campers learn and play in one-week sessions, as they take classes in performing and visiual arts and sports, and they spend time together, forming friendships and learning about Christ.

Barefoot offers full scholarships to kids who cannot afford to attend. A scholarship for one week costs $350. Several other runners and myself have each committed to raising $1000 for Barefoot scholarships as we train for the Music City Marathon (well, half marathon) in Nashville on April 30. As of the moment I’m writing this, I’m at $941 $991…so close! Truly, I’d love to aim higher than this mark — so many of my friends, family, and well, you guys, have the capacity to toss in $10 towards an opportunity that a lot of kids cannot afford. If you’d like to give, please visit Run Barefoot, and designate your gift to runner #11. I can’t tell you what it would mean to me!

I’ve seen how popping a bubble can make a big (and I mean HUGE) difference in someone’s life — I feel that our generation is one in particular that understands the importance of loving others through intentional relationships. Here’s to popping bubbles before the college years.

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