Peggy Stevens, the founder and visionary of Kids4Peace Boston, opened our day in the brisk-aired chapel. With grace, she led an activity on the merit of taking risks. She asked our campers, “what are you bad at?” and challenged us to spend the next twenty minutes experiencing what it was at which we considered ourselves “bad.” Some campers spent time singing, some spent time solving word puzzles, and some even spent time doing math! She challenged our campers to step outside their comfort zones not only during camp but during their time as Peace Leaders in the world around us.
In preparation for Shabbat, the Jewish holy day of rest, reflection, and prayer, we spent time between breakfast and lunch crafting and baking challah, a special bread Jews eat on the sabbath. For many campers, this was their first time participating in the process of baking from scratch. Initials, peace signs, and various forms of braiding were among the many beautiful designs our campers represented in their final creations. Our religion-based experiences continued in the afternoon with Jumm’ah, the communal Muslim prayer service occurring on Friday, a holy day for Muslims. Taking questions from their fellow campers after the service, our Muslim friends had the opportunity to share their faith and religious traditions.
Following a powerful afternoon of prayer, our Peace Leaders prepared for a Discovery Block at the Waterfront. This, however, was no ordinary Discovery Block; tying together our themes of trust and risk-taking, half of our campers made the walk down to the lake blind-folded, taking verbal directions from their peers. Using the teamwork and communication skills we have learned throughout the week, our campers, still blindfolded, were tasked with building a raft capable of journeying out onto the lake. Those who were not blindfolded were only given permission to instruct those were blindfolded on how to put together the different parts of the raft. Though, at times, they would become frustrated, our Peace Leaders were ultimately successful, cheering as they rowed their victory lap.
Our campers stayed out at the Waterfront after completing their challenge, cooling off by swimming, kayaking, and paddle-boarding. Returning to our housing lodge, campers were given ‘easy-time’ as staff prepared a delicious Shabbat dinner. With our campers’ challah from earlier in the day, our Jewish friends shared their beautiful prayers, songs, and traditions as we all broke bread together. Shortly after our meal, our dining hall transformed into a performance hall, as it became the venue of our annual Kids4Peace Talent Show! Sometimes harmonious, sometimes magical, but always awe-inspiring, our campers and staff shared their talents in a night that made us all laugh wholly, listen quietly, and cheer loudly! Closing our day to a camp-wide dance to Taylor Swift’s You Belong With Me, our campers went to bed excited and ready for their final thirty-six hours at camp.
Find photos of our camper’s many adventures and experiences on our Facebook page