Camp Clover 2012
Friday, September 28, 2012 • 3:07pm
The sun was shining brightly as 48 campers arrived on Monday, August 20th at Camp Clover, a free, week-long bereavement day camp for children and teens, sponsored by Atlantic Home Care and Hospice, and held at Camp Riverbend in Warren, NJ. They came with nervous anticipation and sadness, having lost someone close to them. Through the generosity of the camp’s owners, Marianne and Harold Breene and family, Camp Clover focused on helping children ages 7 – 15 deal with their grief.
There were the traditional summer camp activities such as swimming, sports and arts and crafts combined with activities and projects designed to assist children in their grieving process. These children experienced a supportive environment where they could express their feelings and share their stories knowing they would not be judged. With the help of trained staff, counselors and volunteers, campers were encouraged to participate in activities that helped develop healthy coping skills and increase their confidence and self esteem. Surrounded by other children dealing with loss, they made new friends and began to see that they were not alone.
A highlight of the week was a visit from Jan Gunnar Solli, a soccer player from the New York Red Bulls, who shared his story of loss with the children while encouraging them to follow their dreams.
Thursday night was “Family Night” and the families of the campers gathered to share dinner, watch a video of the week’s activities and meet the staff, counselors, and volunteers. The evening ended with the children releasing colorful helium balloons to which they had attached their own messages.Special thanks to the volunteers who helped staff the camp, The Friends of Atlantic Hospice whose fundraising activities made the week possible, Overlook Auxiliary who have established an endowment for the camp, and Bradley & Son Funeral Homes for their financial and moral support.
Anyone interested in learning more about Camp Clover or making a donation to support ongoing camps, please call Atlantic Hospice at 973 379-8440.