Summer SCORES: A place for Leckie & Truesdell campers to call home

Family is what strikes at the heart of DC SCORES. If you ask any of the campers and counselors at the Truesdell and Leckie summer camps they’ll tell you that’s what they’ve built here at Summer SCORES.

It’s not necessarily the blood-related family ties that one would think of that are formed here. It’s the DC SCORES family that each camper and counselor can call home that makes Summer SCORES an experience like no other.

Campers and counselors forge their bonds through skill-building soccer exercises, exciting art lessons, refreshing pool days and adventurous field trips to places like the Smithsonian National Zoo, Newseum, and the GEICO MLB All-Star Fanfest.

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Truesdell Summer SCORES visits the Smithsonian National Zoo!

Field trips hold a special place in the heart of each camper as it gives them the opportunity to make new connections with the world around them. During a trip to the Newseum on a Friday afternoon, I asked two campers, Ivette and Jamyra, what they thought about the “Pictures of the Year” exhibit we were in.

Ivette responded, “I like seeing how these events impacted other people in the world.” Summer SCORES allows anyone from a counselor to a camper to walk away learning something new each day of camp.

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Truesdell camper, Ivette H., shows off her tie-dyed pillowcase!

In a matter of weeks, campers reach new personal heights—growing their confidence levels and developing interpersonal skills that prepare them for the upcoming school year. A shy camper may find their breakout moment in a DJ-ing lesson with DJ Ra whilst an outgoing camper can focus their extra energy in a coding lesson with Generation Code. The possibilities are endless.

The learning experiences are a two-way street for counselors as well. Counselors become role models for campers and shape their camp experience to be one that is impactful and fun.

In a spare moment in between camp programming transitions, I catch up with Truesdell Camp Counselor, Oscar Hernandez. We talk about his camp experience so far and he tells me about the impact he wants to make on the campers.

“I honestly hope they see me as a big brother,” says Hernandez. “They bring out the best in me and I hope I’ve done the same for them,” he says humbly.

Christian Melendez is another counselor at Leckie who shares the same optimistic attitude about his experience so far. During a field trip with Clark Construction he reveals to me that before becoming a Summer SCORES counselor, he couldn’t have imagined how much he would have grown to love and appreciate his role as a counselor.

He tells me, “I’m lucky to call each person here family and I’m glad that I get to share my love for soccer with these campers,” says Melendez.

I couldn’t help but grin and feel the same way because that’s really what it’s all about.

After six weeks I walk away from both the Leckie and Truesdell camps with a full heart.

Good work is being done to give these campers a bright future to hold onto and warm Summer memories to look back on. Here’s till next time, Summer SCORES! Now onto an exciting Fall SCORES season!

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