On Tuesday, November 17, 2020, Camp Harbor Views – a free online experience for families, supporters, and champions of our mission – celebrated the resiliency of our community and shared our views on the past, present, and future of the organization.
Hosted by Jenny Johnson of NESN’s Dining Playbook and Camp Harbor View’s Advisory Council, it was an evening full of surprises. Over 700 attendees heard from organization leaders, champions, and a few special guests sharing stories of joy, hope, and the community that made it all possible. The celebration was capped off with four impressive Leaders in Training sharing their 2020 experiences and why they’re hopeful for the future.
Watch the evening’s program from start to finish below to hear more young leaders share their perspectives. We promise it will leave you energized and inspired.
Camp Harbor View is made possible by the generous support of donors. We hope you’re inspired to continue to invest in the future of Boston with us. Please consider donating to support our mission and share the magic of Camp Harbor View with family, friends, and fellow Bostonians by following us on social media. Thank you for being a part of this community.
We’re excited to continue #BostonBlackHistory this February in celebration of Black History Month, posting stories on the legacy of Black history in our wonderful and culturally rich city across our social media channels and encouraging everyone in Boston to join the conversation by sharing stories of their own.
Leaders in Training in our program helped brainstorm and develop the stories we’re telling. History matters and representation matters – and through this project we seek to highlight the great diversity and character of the city of Boston.
Here are just a few of our favorites from the stories told by teens in our program and by members of this community so far. Do you have one to add? Post it to your social channels with the hashtag #BostonBlackHistory or send it our way via email at email@example.com or Instagram @campharborview. Please join us in raising awareness of these important stories.
At Camp Harbor View, we often ask ourselves if we’re doing enough. Are we doing enough for our campers, Leaders in Training and staff? Are we doing enough for the families of the youth we serve? About six months ago, we decided that the answer to the last of those important questions was “NO.”
When the Boston Globe published its recent series on racial income disparity in Boston, one of the stunning statistics shared was that the average net worth of families of color in the city is $8.00. That’s not a typo – $8.00. Camp Harbor View has always been committed to promoting equity and opportunity in Boston, but this series stirred our desire to do more. Encouraged and supported by the Board of Directors, we decided to begin with Camp Harbor View families; to learn from them about the obstacles and hurdles they face with respect to economic mobility and to work with them to design pilot solutions to some of the most intractable problems they encounter.
We have taken the first step by engaging the services of the consulting team of Turahn Dorsey and Reverend Mariama White-Hammond to lead us through a process of information-gathering with families and LITs from our program, and then to work with family representatives and an advisory board composed of corporate leaders to create short and long-term solutions of varying size and scope.
Racial and economic inequality has long been the norm in Boston. We know that we cannot fix a problem of this magnitude, but we believe that we might be able to have an impact on at least a small group of families. Perhaps that grows into something more substantial and perhaps we will create a model that can be replicated. We realize this is a tall order, but we feel a deep responsibility to the families who have placed their trust in us, so we’re off and running. We’ll keep you posted.
BOSTON (CBS) – Boston’s Camp Harbor View is a summer camp for kids who may not otherwise have the chance to have a special summer. Camp Harbor View is in its 13th year helping kids thrive. And this camp is about much more than just having fun.
BOSTON (The Boston Globe) – Sporting pink reflective sunglasses that matched her bright lipstick, Lisa Fortenberry clapped and yelled “Day one, baby!”
In front of her, campers exited their buses in single file Monday. Some tried to keep a cool countenance — one even kept his arms crossed as he strode along — but the staff’s energetic welcome was tough to resist. When the teenager thought no one was looking, he let a smile cross his face.
The campers were headed for a boat that would take them to Camp Harbor View, where a high-ropes course cuts the skyline, orange flags line a scenic boardwalk onto the island, and waves crash against the rocky waterline next to the basketball and tennis courts.
Today is the first day of Black History Month and we’re excited to share with you an initiative we’ll be engaging in all month long. In our teen programming and on our social media channels, we’ll be celebrating the rich (and complicated) history of being black in Boston. We’re calling the project #BostonBlackHistory and we would like you to be a part of it.
Getting involved is really quite simple — we’ll be posting images and stories from leaders, activists, and change agents in our city’s black history throughout the month of February to Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook, and our website. However, there’s absolutely zero chance that we can do justice to about four centuries of black history by ourselves; that’s where you come in.
We’re hoping you’ll join us in using the hashtag #BostonBlackHistory and posting stories and memories to your own social media profiles or to the profile of your school, company, or organization. What stories have you lived — whether they’re about you, or your family, your friends, your community? What stories or heroes from this city’s history have inspired you? Maybe you remember when Martin Luther King, Jr., led thousands in a march from Roxbury to the Boston Common to protest school segregation. Maybe you went to Burke High School with Donna Summer. Maybe your own mom or dad or grandmother is a part of #BostonBlackHistory. We want to hear your stories.
Subscribe to our emails to make sure you don’t miss anything — we’ll be sending a few updates on the project throughout the month.
We’re looking forward to digging into our city’s rich history with you.
Jack Connors was a founding partner of Boston marketing firm Hill Holliday, but it’s his work in his “retirement years” as chairman of the nonprofit Camp Harbor View that he’s more excited to talk about these days.
BOSTON (CBS) – It was a summer camp surprise like no other when Big Papi visited Camp Harbor View, inspiring and encouraging the young people there. The camp works with at-risk kids from Boston’s inner-city neighborhoods. The message David Ortiz brought was perfect.
The kids roared their welcome for the former Red Sox slugger. They had no idea he would visit the camp on Long Island in Boston Harbor Thursday.
BOSTON (The Boston Globe) – Sitting near the shore on a bucolic Boston Harbor island, 17-year-old Lereca Rodrigues thought back to when a cousin was shot last year in an inexplicable act of violence.
“He didn’t have that camp, or that support from somebody else behind him, or family to keep him off the streets,” the high school student from Dorchester said.
Rodrigues, however, has that support: Camp Harbor View on Long Island, which she has attended since she was 11. She was among 100 former campers who have returned to become leaders in training, spending the summer learning how to mentor the next generation of Boston youths in civic engagement and community action.