The Moyer Foundation Programs
Camp Erin is The Moyer Foundation's furthest reaching initiative. With 41 camps nationwide, Camp Erin is the largest network of free bereavement camps in the country, serving more than 2,500 children annually. The weekend-long experience is designed for children and teens ages 6-17 who are grieving the death of someone close to them. Camp is filled with fun, traditional camp activities combined with grief education and emotional support - facilitated by grief professionals and trained volunteers. The Moyer Foundation partners with local hospice and healthcare organizations as well as bereavement experts in the communities where camps are established. To date, Camp Erin has provided hope and healing to nearly 9,800 children and teens across the country. The Moyer Foundation is also committed to supporting the needs of children of military families who are grieving a loss.
Camp Mariposa is an initiative of The Moyer Foundation - a first-of-its-kind program designed to meet the needs of children ages 9-12 facing the difficult challenges associated with living with an addicted family member. Camp Mariposa is a free program led by experienced and trained professionals who provide counseling and support in a fun and traditional camp setting. Camp activities are enhanced with therapeutic and educational elements designed to teach children problem-solving and self-care strategies. Camp Mariposa gives children a chance to laugh, play, explore and learn, as well as to create friendships with fellow campers who can relate to them and understand what they are going through.
The Moyer Foundation’s Community Grant Program
The Moyer Foundation identifies and funds quality, grassroots organizations that provide direct service and support to children in severe physical, emotional, or financial distress. The Moyer Foundation supports programs that are meeting a critical need in our community, programs that enhance the stability, health and quality of life for children in all forms of distress. The Moyer Foundation raises funds for grants and key initiatives through special events, corporate partnerships and individual donations.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
In 2012, The Moyer Foundation reached a major milestone by establishing a Camp Erin location to serve grieving children and teens in every Major League Baseball city in the U.S. and Canada. By the end of the 2013 camp season, more than 10,000 children will have attended Camp Erin since 2002. With support of the New York Life Foundation, The Moyer Foundation is funding the expansion of camp services at four existing camp locations in 2013 that will allow these groups to serve an additional 150 campers. Each Camp Erin location is actively engaging in outreach to support children of military families thanks to an ongoing partnership with the United Service Organization (USO).
The Moyer Foundation will also host a Camp Erin in Newtown, CT in response to the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in December 2012 - bringing the camp total to 41 locations serving 2,500 children and teens in 2013.
Camp Mariposa has been serving King County children and teens impacted by the chemical dependency of a family member since 2007. In 2011-2012, Camp Mariposa expanded to include locations in Florida, Indiana and Pennsylvania. In 2013, Camp Mariposa will expand to southern California with a location in San Diego. Each location offers multiple Camp Mariposa sessions each year with the total sessions at nearly 30 – helping to break the intergenerational cycle of addiction in families.
Thanks to the support of a giving community, more than 73,000 children in distress in the Pacific Northwest have been impacted through The Moyer Foundation’s Community Grant program since 2000. In 2012, The Moyer Foundation’s Community Grant program expanded to include organizations in Washington and Pennsylvania. The 2013 grant cycle will open in the spring.
While we are proud of the annual impact we make in the lives of children in distress, the need is much greater and the statistics are staggering. According to SAMHSA, more than 8.3 million children nationwide live in a home with a parent in need of treatment for alcohol and/or drug dependency. These children are three times more likely to be abused; four times more likely to be neglected; and face four times the risk of developing substance issues themselves.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are more than 1.5 million children grieving the death of a parent - with that number exponentially increasing when considering extended family, friends or caretakers. These children are at a great risk for suicide, poverty, depression and substance abuse.
Through a 2-year research study with the University of Nebraska we are learning that as a result of attending the Camp Erin program, there is a downward trend in feelings of isolation and loneliness and an upward trend in hope.
Our Camp Erin and Camp Mariposa programs have waiting lists of children who qualify and are interested in attending our camps. With additional funding and resources available, we have an opportunity to offer the healing and educational experience of our programs to many more children each year.
With the necessary funding in place, it is our goal to expand Camp Erin and Camp Mariposa to one to two additional locations each in 2013 and 2014. New locations for Camp Erin in 2013 include Newtown, CT, Boston, Tucson/Phoenix, and South Florida. Camp Mariposa will open a new camp in 2013 in San Diego. The sustainability and longevity of over 40 existing camps is also an important area of focus and will allow The Moyer Foundation to continue helping children in distress in perpetuity.