Camp Savio: Out Of The Toybox And Now a Bug

Jocelyn Rosillo, Writer

Every year in July, youth support youth within the community and care for children from Kindergarten to 7th grade through a program called Camp Savio. These students participate in multiple activities organized by students and some adults which both help and supervise. 


Since the program is through a catholic church, the people have a mission. Wanting to create and partake in the program is to educate and foster Catholic identity in the youth of their parish through Don Bosco, a known saint’s pillars, eason, religion, and kindness.


For one to participate, they must attend a series of meetings which train you on how to behave in such an environment as the one at Savio. With lessons on child behavior, limits of the program, time management presentations, Savio teaches their helpers to get out of their comfort zone and have fun while helping others.


Joining because of her will to become a teacher and last year’s counselor experience, Karina Pulido, 12, talked about the one on one interaction with the kids all day in the month of July. 


She said, “It gave me insight into how kids really act,” Pulido stated. “Plus, I miss my camper so much! I didn’t ever think I would bond with someone so much that is so much younger than me but I really want to go back just to continue hanging out with the class I had last year.”


Normally, a Savio day as a counselor lasts from 8a.m. to around 3p.m. and consists of game time, liturgy crafts, rallies, sports, and excursions every week. During this time, participants are supervised and attended by another at all times. Though it may sound tiring, many believe that all the time spent is worth it. 


Some even add on to the 250 hours earned by trying out to be a head counselor, who leads an entire grade and/or become part of rec crew, who hypes up the entire summer program at rallies and chooses the winner of the grades’ friendly battle.


Every week each grade decides a theme based on songs. By doing so, they edit the lyrics to match Savio spirit and create dances or movements that go along with the music. The louder and more passionate a grade is about their rally at the end of the week, the more likely that they win one of the two spirit sticks. 


Being the in the first grade to win a spirit stick, Noe Watson seemed passionate when speaking on the victory of the grade he helped counsel, 1st grade. 


“It was so nerve wracking and exciting when cheering to see who won the spirit stick that first week but when they yelled out ‘First Grade!’ everyone’s face lit up,” Watson said. “The kids seemed so proud to have been rewarded for their chants and dances. The next week they even listened more when learning the rallies, it was adorable.”


Continuing to comment on more reasons that Savio last year, counselor, Brenda Ponce  encourages anyone even the slightest bit interested in becoming a counselor because she believes the more, the merrier. 


“I joined because my two friends did savio the previous year and they recommended it and it was so fun. So, I do plan on joining until I graduate, maybe even after,” she said. “I’d recommend it to anyone who wants to work with kids in the future and wants to have unordinary fun over the summer.”


Hoping to have a summer better than last, these students wish to continue volunteering and enjoying time meeting new people and going on field trips.