As the Week 4 Camp of our Collegiate Summer Camp Series began at Temple University, I took a moment to reflect upon our participating young people and their PYB experience:
It is 8 a.m. and young kids are pouring into Temple’s athletics center for PYB camp. Some kids are walking solo or with a sibling from the subway. Others are being dropped off by a mom, dad, grandparent, or guardian. The returning campers are proudly wearing their mesh PYB reversible jerseys from prior camp weeks at other universities. The new campers carry a little less bounce in their steps but their excitement is still palpable, equal to the eager, incoming college freshman who are on campus for their orientation.
Most interesting to me are the kids from Jay Cooke Middle School in the Logan Neighborhood who spent 24 weeks with us during this past school year at their school and here at Temple. These kids carry themselves like they belong, like they are at home on this high energy urban campus which is inviting and geographically and symbolically accessible. The kids know that when they walk through the revolving doors and into this beautiful building for day one of another great week of summer camp, they will be nourished with healthy meals, positive and caring adults, quality basketball instruction and games, and a stimulating academic program.
In the face of the injustices, inequities, and tumultuous times, we are a positive force for good in the lives of these precious, deserving children and families. We have only just begun.
By Kenny Holdsman, President & CEO