A day in the life of: Carla
Meet Carla, a member of our Logistics Team at Camp Promise-West. Her siblings are campers and her mom is also a volunteer, so for Carla, the week at camp is a family affair in more ways than one!
logistics. [loh-jis-tiks, luh-]. noun: The detailed coordination of a complex operation involving many people, facilities or supplies.
I wake up and grab a shower before the campers are up so that I’m not in the way while they are trying to get ready to start their day. Then it’s down to the kitchen for some much needed coffee and breakfast. Breakfast is the only meal I am sure to get to eat with the rest of camp and I use it to get to know different campers each day.
I’m off to the office to check in with the Assistant Director to see what is needed for the day. Today it looks like we’re prepping for and making decorations for the evening's dance. Arts 'N Crafts is a great place to find all that is needed for signs, wall decorations, table centerpieces and more. Tonight's dance theme is Secret Garden, so we'll definitely need some signs and decorations for that.
Throughout the day the radio buzzes and takes me off to do any number of tasks. It could be bringing extension cords to counselors who need to charge a camper's chair, grabbing something from the office that is needed in another location at camp, taking the microphone from one event to another, or meeting up with delivery folks to assist with unloading or directing where they need to be.
Time for lunch and another opportunity to talk with the campers and hear the excitement in their voices as they talk about their camp experience thus far. Not to mention a chance to enjoy the amazing food provided for everybody at camp.
It's Snack Shack time so I’m off to load up the golf cart with healthy snacks and water. We go through lots of water since it’s so hot outside. I drive around and deliver snacks to the various locations campers are likely to be: cabin level, Arts 'N Crafts, the Rec Hall, and yurt. Oh, and I can't forget about the folks at archery!
We have just a few hours to turn the Rec Hall into a magical garden for tonight's dance. Our entire team (and then some) springs into action to hang lights, signs, and decorations. For tonight there are also trees, plants, and shrubs on loan from a bunch of local nurseries that need disbursed throughout the room (and inventoried so we can make sure they get returned to the right nurseries later this week!). We take turns grabbing plates of dinner and bringing it up to the Rec Hall, tonight is definitely going to be a working dinner. We put on the final finishing touches with just 5 minutes to space before the dance begins at 7:00pm. Whew!
I get to watch the campers dancing the night away as I hand out drinks and snacks. This is the best part of the day for me because I see how much our hard work has paid off, they really love the scene we created in the rec center.
Time to clean up from evening's activity. Decorations need taken down and put away, chairs need to be moved, the floor needs swept, and then a final wrap up meeting for the night. This was a great time to talk about what happened during the day, what is to come tomorrow, and then we all just share just a word or two about how we were feeling.
Once cleanup is done I set up the charging stations for the camper's power wheelchairs in the Rec Hall. Counselors bring the chairs up as their campers go to bed, but I help coordinate the actual plugging-in of the chairs so we don't blow a fuse. I'll also return here in the morning before breakfast to put the cords and power strips away for the day once the campers all have their fully-charged chairs back.
MIDNIGHT (OK, SOMETIMES IT'S 1:00AM)
I can barely brush my teeth, I’m so tired. I manage, though, and crawl into bed so that I can start all over again in the morning!