Tag Archives: Wildwood Ranch

A Summer Experience for Kids

by Dr. Chad Audi

School is almost out for the summer. Children everywhere are looking forward to time away from the classroom and spending more time outdoors and traveling.

But not all children have the advantage of going on family trips to fun places like Disneyland or Cedar Point.

Would you believe some children have never been outside of their own neighborhood? It’s sad, but true.

For more than 40 years, Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries (DRMM) has run a summer camp for underprivileged kids from the inner city. Our 240-acre Wildwood Ranch in Howell, Michigan is equipped with all of the best camp equipment, and we offer academic, recreational and spiritual activities. The kids love it! They see and do things they have never seen or done before. They ride horses, climb the ropes courses, go boating, room with others in a cabin, and make new friends.

Now, DRMM is pleased to be named as the new operator for another summer camp for Detroit Public Schools (DPS) students. Camp Burt Shurly is located in Gregory, Michigan and we have a lot of renovations planned, such as updating the cabins, expanding the programming, and adding a nature center. DPS has launched a campaign to raise money for the camp improvements.

Just like at Wildwood, we want to make sure that the kids have a great experience on both the educational and recreational levels.

So, when you’re watching the kids in your neighborhood play outside this summer or taking your children on a family vacation, think about the young children and teens who are experiencing the beauty of nature for the very first time at summer camps like ours.

These are the experiences that will shape their futures and broaden their horizons. All kids deserve that opportunity.

Dr. Chad Audi

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Let Kids Experience Life

By Dr. Chad Audi

The song “Greatest Love of All” begins with “I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way.” It’s so important that children get an opportunity to develop successful personal and professional lives so that they can become our future leaders. But they need guidance to achieve their goals. In today’s busy world, parents don’t always give kids the attention and time they need and deserve. And children don’t always take the time to really experience and enjoy life.

Quality interactions with peers ── away from televisions, computers, radios, cell phones, iPods and other distractions ─ can make a huge difference in a child’s life. That’s what we provide at the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries’(DRMM) Wildwood Ranch in Howell, Michigan. Every summer, the 240-acre ranch offers a sanctuary for 1300 youngsters, ages 9 to 17. Most of the kids are from the inner city and have never experienced life on a ranch. They participate in activities designed to teach life skills, build teamwork and strengthen spirituality. Many go canoeing, tackle a high ropes course and ride horses for the first time in their lives. The activities build character and self-esteem.

“Terrell” has attended the camp for the past nine years. “I’ve gained leadership skills to be able to show younger kids in the neighborhood how to do certain things,” he says. “It does prepare you for the workforce because you are learning a lot of different training skills. The camp changed my life…it keeps you busy and active and away from trouble.”

Kids who are at-risk or from economically-disadvantaged backgrounds can benefit from experiences like those at Wildwood Ranch. They get exposed to ethnic diversity and can have a genuinely good time without all of the electronic gadgets that are so popular with young people today. They also learn about the dangers of drugs and alcohol in an attempt to keep the kids on the right path. The daily praise and worship services nourish their spiritual and personal growth. All of these things can lead to better leaders and decision makers. All children deserve a chance at being the best that they can be. We owe it to our young people to “teach them well and let them lead the way.”

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