Cameron Boys' Camp at Reed's Ferry
Beech Tree News received a tip Monday night that a youth group was camping at Reed's Ferry. Initially, I brushed it off as gossip, but after I dropped Ellie off at the school Tuesday morning, my curiosity got the best of me, and I headed to Logansport.
As I neared the ferry, I began to think I had come here on a bogus lead, but then I saw a young man in army fatigue pants dragging a canoe across the road. I turned into the driveway of the ferry house, and a few boys were methodically picking up their camping gear and dousing their fires with water. "What in the world?" I thought as I rolled down my window to holler at the oldest-looking boy cleaning up his camp.
I learned the crew was a group of campers from Cameron Boys' Camp based out of North Carolina. Cameron Boys' Camp is part of the Baptist Children's Homes of North Carolina. The program is a "Residential Wilderness Camp" for school-aged boys and girls, offering structure-based learning outdoors for those with behavioral problems.
As of Tuesday, the group had traveled 170 miles on the Green River in 21 days. As I interviewed them, they were loading up to continue their trip into Rochester. After that, they would come ashore, load up, and then begin their road trip to Noah's Ark and The Creation Museum before continuing home to North Carolina.
Their website states the following regarding their program, "Children live in groups of ten with three counselors, called "Chiefs. With the help of their peers and Chiefs, campers learn discipline, positive behavior patterns, and self-worth. The goal is to build positive, healthy relationships where deep hurts are healed, and bad attitudes are changed". The children also receive school credits while in the program, which will transfer back to traditional school after completing their time at Cameron Boys' Camp. The program lasts one year.
I spoke with Chief Trevor Bonds and Chief RJ Osborne about their current program and their recent trip. As we talked, the boys dutifully folded their tents, tarps, and camping gear while getting their canoes ready to depart on the next leg of their journey.
If you wish the boys good luck and offer words of encouragement, the Chiefs said to post on their Facebook wall at https://www.facebook.com/cameronboyscamp. You never know what you will find in Butler County, especially along the river.