MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — A new grant from the Michigan Department of Education will allow the Muskegon YMCA to further its summer programs.
The YMCA received $146,000 from MDE that will go towards supplying equipment and staffing Camp Pendalouan in Montague this summer where thousands of children are expected to spend days and nights.
“At the end of the day, the additional funds we get just means we can serve more kids,” Gabrielle Gerlach, CEO of the Muskegon YMCA, said. “So, it helps us expand our programs. All of those pieces sort of enrich these kids and their families more.”
Campers who attend this summer will get the chance to participate in a wide variety of activities, including water sports, rock climbing, cooking lessons and more. These will also involve an educational aspect, something that falls into the main goal of the YMCA.
“With the summertime, it can often be a time where you’ll see learning loss for kids,” Gerlach said. “So, our goal is to make sure we are not seeing those losses, that we’re engaging kids and making sure that they’re doing activities and things that are going to better them.”
Along with the outdoor activities, there will also be STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) focused courses that tie into other activities. Gerlach said campers have so much fun they don’t even realize they’re learning.
“We’re all about the experiential education,” she said. “So, it’s really about connecting with the outdoors, learning about new things, kind of building confidence. You know, learning who you want to be as a person and then as we do those activities, we found lots of ways to incorporate other school curriculum.”
This summer will mark 100 years of operation for the camp. To register for summer programs at Camp Pendalouan by clicking here. Volunteers for staffing are also being sought. You can apply for a position here.