Bright News

Bright Futures for Youth offers summer day camp for students

Bright Futures for Youth will open a Youth Hub Summer Day Camp, allowing kindergartners to ninth-graders to expand their education and skills – and give hardworking parents a free or low-cost safe and supervised option for their children this summer.

Bright Futures for Youth and Nevada County Health and Human Services are partnering on the Youth Hub Summer Day Camp at Deer Creek Elementary School and Seven Hills Middle School in Nevada City. The day camp – open 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. weekdays – starts June 21 and continues through July 30. The day camp will be closed Monday, July 5.

Children can attend daily and stay the entire time or just a few hours, depending on the needs of their parents. However, parents must sign-up their children for a week at a time.

The Youth Hub Summer Day Camp is available for all families, regardless of their household income. The camp will be free for very low-income parents and at a greatly reduced cost on a sliding scale based on household income for many others.

The most any family would pay is $175 a week per child. Parents can learn more and register on the Bright Futures for Youth website.

“The camp is a multifaceted effort that gives children a chance to develop and explore new skills, play, make new friends, and just as important, spend time together,” said Jennifer Singer, executive director of Bright Futures for Youth (formerly The Friendship Club). “It’s a one-of-a-kind program that meets so many needs.”

The six-week day camp will offer a range of age-appropriate activities on numerous subjects, including art, reading, writing, math, science and technology. The goal is to help students develop their cognitive, social, emotional and physical skills.

The Youth Hub Summer Day Camp follows the popular Distance Learning Center and Youth Hub during the past school year at the Nevada County Fairgrounds. The Bright Futures for Youth-operated center offered fourth-graders through high school students access to free high-speed internet in a supervised setting. Nevada County and the fairgrounds were community partners in the Distance Learning Center and Youth Hub that will close June 11.

“Students have faced so many challenges during the COVID pandemic, especially with distance learning and isolation,” said Ryan Gruver, director of Nevada County Health and Human Services. “The Youth Hub Summer Day Camp will address these challenges and help students connect with each other.”

Children will receive breakfast and lunch from Grass Valley Unified School District, and a morning and afternoon snack from Bright Futures for Youth. Exercise, free play, games and walks are also part of the camp.

Students will be divided into classes – transitional kindergarten and kindergarten; first and second grades; third and fourth grades; fifth and sixth grades; and seventh through ninth grades. The kindergarten class will have 16 students and two adults; other classes will have 20 students with two adults. At least one adult per class will be CPR certified. Bright Futures for Youth is currently hiring for various positions, including Lead and Support Counselors.

“The Youth Hub and Summer Day Camp will be about hands-on experiences, trying new things and just having fun,” said Bright Futures for Youth Site Coordinator Cori Ove, who will oversee the camp. “We’re developing a well-rounded program that includes learning about different cultures and a tech-and-makers week.”

The camp can accommodate 156 students at a time. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Parents will pay either online, check or cash. However, scholarships and subsidies are available for very-low and low-income parents, eliminating or greatly reducing the cost. An application to determine eligibility for free or low-cost options is available online at Bright Futures for Youth Summer Day Camp.

Parents enrolled in the Sierra Nevada Children’s Services program are eligible to participate in the summer day camp.

Fees will cover the costs for the youth hub. Donations to Bright Futures for Youth are not being used to fund the Youth Hub and Summer Day Camp.

Bright Futures for Youth had already announced an extensive lineup of summer activities, including a sleepaway camp, when the Youth Hub Summer Day Camp evolved.

“The opportunity to establish the camp came about rather quickly,” Singer said. “But it’s an effort that meets our mission, and will help children, including many who are still struggling from distance learning because of the pandemic.”

Published in The Union on June, 17, 2021