Community Impact: Camp Koinonia
Koinonia is a Greek word referring to the idea of fellowship. The 32 churches leading this Homer-based camp believe the action of fellowship produces authentic nurture, love, encouragement, vulnerability, transparency, accountability, and sharing among believers. Camp Koinonia creates fellowship in a traditional camp environment for five days with a diverse group of deserving children with the hope of producing positive, Christian, role models.
“We’ve grown over our 13 years of camp to what we have now”, said Gale Whitlock, assistant camp director.
One need that’s grown over time is a camp for middle and high schoolers. A leadership development camp, “Stones,” developed from this need.
“Initially we had 12 Stones who helped at camp,” Whitlock said. “This year we’ll have more than a hundred. This is one of the most exciting programs – they are so excited to lead and learn.”
Stones focus on leadership development, while investing in community service projects, such as packing back packs with school supplies, doing yard work for senior citizens, and assisting with ministries. The camp also offers day camp experiences, as well as counselor positions.
The Jackson EMC Foundation, recently granted $13,000 to fund 55 sponsorships for campers from Jackson EMC’s service area, to participate in the camp experience. Since 2007, the Foundation has granted $128,400 in camp sponsorships for Camp Koinonia.