ANADARKO, Okla. (KFOR) – There are thousands of kids every summer cycling through the Oakridge Christian Camp.
Every one of them wants to be on TV.
They all want a turn driving a go-cart, or hanging on the zipline.
But over the course of a season there will be about 150 children like the Beaumann brothers from Choctaw, Jace and Blake, who love the game room, or Connie Headrick, who likes her pool time on hot days.
Blake Beumann also mentions, “the water slide, swimming, laser tag.”
“And having fun,” adds Jace.
They are Angel Tree kids, here as a part of a Prison Fellowship program for children of incarcerated parents.
“We live with our grandparents,” says Jake.
“I live with my mom,” offers Connie. “My dad is in a program.”
Jaime Ball is one of the staffers at Oakridge charged with making sure these five to 18 year olds make the right kinds of memories here.
Sometimes that means providing a little extra care.
“We try to do more awareness training,” she says. “Sometimes we get some extra questions or extra circumstances.”
Dominic Harrison and De’Tavieon Harris didn’t know each other before camp but are inseparable now.
“Everyone thinks we’re brothers,” smiles Dominic.
Jeremy Edge has been a day camper here before but this is his first overnight camp.
He lives with his dad these days, but he wants us to know his mom is getting better.
“She has my two sisters and two brothers with her,” he says.
Being homesick is one of the hardest things to overcome when a kid goes to camp.
These kids find comfort in a different way, through each other, and through a childlike faith that things will get better.
“It feels nice to know I’m not the only one,” says Jeremy.
For more information on the Angel Tree Camper program, go to www.prisonfellowship.org/about/angel-tree/angel-tree-camping.
For more information on the Oakridge Christian camp, go to www.oakridgecamp.com.