EAST GULL LAKE -- Camp Confidence is among 65 locations in 19 states to host a two-week program for the 14- to 18-year-old Landmark Volunteers.
This non-profit organization's goals are to find young people who "are looking for an opportunity to do something for others, to expand their world through community service, and to give something back to society."
The students applied to enter the program and after they had been approved decided among a large variety of projects spread across the country, including two weeks on a working cattle ranch, working at Tanglewood in Massachusetts where the Boston Symphony spends it summers or helping at the historic Calvin Coolidge Village in Vermont.
Camp Confidence has put them to work on a much needed project -- a patio for the west end of the Mariucci Lodge. Thompson Concrete donated about 10,000 blocks for the project. Youths also have been doing other landscaping and working with programs.
Landmark attempts to involve students in community service at a young age and gives them intangible rewards, including an increased sense of self worth, as well as community service credits and letters of recommendation that will be useful in their future plans.
The group includes 12 volunteers and one team leader:
Leah Conn, 25, grew up in Newton Mass., and lives in San Jose, Calif., where she teaches kindergarten. This is her third Landmark trip. Last August she was in Ithaca, N.Y., with a group working at the Paleontological Research Institute. Earlier this summer she supervised a group at Gilmanton Iron Works, N.H., and worked with Easter Seals Camp Sno-Mo at the Hidden Valley Boy Scout Reservation.
The rest of the volunteers include: Miranda Bryan, 16, Cincinnati; Sara Coren, 17, Gladwyne, Pa.; Bethany Courage, 16, Bethesda, Md.; Danny Demeshulam, 17, Bedford, N.Y.; Kaitlin Fox, 14, Lincolnshire, Ill.; Jacob Goldstein, 17, Pomona, N.Y.; Liana Hultquist, 17, Cary, N.C.; Jimmy Kelsey, 15, Harwich, Mass.; Peter Kim, Harrison, N.Y.; Jacob Kovner, 16, Pacific Palisades, Calif.; Caitlin Maynard, 17, Convent Station, N.J.; and Amy Smith, 15, Annapolis, Md.
Volunteers have been coming to Sylvan Lake for the past four years. Their projects have included fire pits for evening bonfires, environmental trails and constructing the barn in the Les Kouba Wildlife Sanctuary.
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