CRS Times: CRS ‘18 Week 7

Blog Editors: Oliver (New York) & Jackson (Louisiana)

Building a Camp

As our community has been built up over these past weeks, we’ve also been building additions to the camp itself in the camper-led projects. Working on the projects as well as being able to utilize them throughout the days as new parts of the campsite provides an amazing platform for campers to bond. The physical additions we make to camp allow us to simultaneously make additions to our camp’s community in a unique way only CRS could offer.

Projects are incredibly important to the spirit of camp, as they embody so many of the values of CRS. Firstly, for an organization trying to foster leadership in its campers, what better way to achieve this than to let them come up with any improvements they’d like to see at camp, and turn them into a reality all on their own. The level of independence from counselors given during projects allows each camper to experience enough freedom so that we are the ones creating the ideas and driving the groups forward. Being thrown in such a position, as well as many of us doing types of work we are unfamiliar with, such as using hammers, ladders and power tools and really getting our hands dirty, places us out of our comfort zone: another clear goal of camp. Because of this, the work we do in our project groups allows us to bond.

As we are removed from where we feel comfortable, it makes the members of each project group become more dependent on one another. You’ll see campers who have experience in these areas of work teaching newcomers what they know and fostering friendships through reliability; because, when you’re the only ones in charge of your project you have to get it done whether or not you’re dealt the best hand. Maybe a group will have nobody who knows how to use a hammer, but as we have continued to learn all summer, by putting ourselves out there and trying to understand through experience (as well as failure) we can help figure things out, and in doing so, hopefully discover new things about ourselves.

Projects serve as a period of time for us to, in a way, prove camp right - that it doesn’t matter where you’re from or what experiences you have had, but by putting a group of intelligent, mature young adults together, we can not only solve many problems that ought to be challenging by piecing together each individual’s culture and knowledge, but in doing so we can create a community as we work (maybe without even realizing it) who share a determination to learn and help one another.  

projects spotlight

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Dining Hall Mural

The Dining Hall Mural Project is, as the name suggests, creating creative new art to hang up around the Dining Hall. They’ve made a painting of a map of the campus, and are now working on a creative mashup of several iconic buildings and sights from countries around the world.

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Gazebo Project

The group working on the Gazebo is making a variety of improvements and additions to the Gazebo, which itself was a project for it’s initial construction a couple years ago. In conjunction with adding a fresh coat of paint they’ve added a pull-up bar, a dip bench, and brought over a swing and bench press from the Red Hook campus and incorporated them into the Gazebo, creating an excellent outdoor workout space.

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Lean-to

Led by the man himself, Cameron, this group is working on creating more comfortable and permanent sleeping areas for campers, hoping to replace all of the damaged tents on tent hill.

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Welcome Sign

The welcome sign project, is making a new sign at the entrance of camp. The sign is a great way to create a meaningful first impression welcoming newcomers to camp.


Building a Community

How the time flies by. It seems like it was just yesterday that we were all getting on a bus full of strangers. But now, the 2018 Boys Session is entering its final week. Throughout the first three weeks of camp, those strangers on that bus have become lifelong friends from all around the globe. We’d like to highlight just a few of the many connections that campers have built so far through some camper interviews below. 

 Konrad (Poland) and Harold (Peru)

Konrad (Poland) and Harold (Peru)

How did you two become friends?

Konrad - “When I heard Harold singing and playing guitar in the camper’s lounge, I asked him what was he playing and he told me it was a traditional Peruvian song. I guess we first bonded over that.

What do you have in common?

Harold - “I think we both really like music.”

Konrad - “And we’re both pretty calm and quiet people.”

Do you think your cultural differences have an effect on your friendship?

Both - “No”

Konrad - “I think there aren’t really so many differences.”

How will you two stay in touch after camp?

Harold - “I think by Facebook, like social media.

Konrad - “Yeah, especially so that we can see what we are both doing after camp.

 Rajvir (New York) and Nhlamulo (South Africa)

Rajvir (New York) and Nhlamulo (South Africa)

How did you two become friends?

Rajvir - I hosted him at my house before camp. I picked him up from the airport. We started talking about hip-hop and stuff. I thought he seemed like a really cool dude.

What do you have in common?

Nhlamulo - Everything really. We found that we liked the same music, food. We are like, two of the same people from such different parts of the world.

Rajvir - We share the same values, I think.

Do you think your cultural differences affect your friendship?

Rajvir - Yeah, but in a good way. At first, our cultures seemed so different, but as I got to know Nhlamulo, we figured out that our lifestyles are very similar. I learn a lot from the cultural differences we have, though.

How will you two stay in touch after camp?

Nhlamulo - Social media. Also, I’m planning on possibly moving to the U.S. for college.

 Minseop (South Korea) and Tuan (Minnesota)

Minseop (South Korea) and Tuan (Minnesota)

How did you two become friends?

Minseop - Because we were at the same dinner table during the first week.

Tuan - Also, we were paired together for Alex’s evening program [in which campers were asked to come up with goals for the community in pairs].

What do you have in common?

Tuan - We both like to be around each other.

Minseop - Yeah, and we’re both really super fashionable - outside of camp, though.

Do your cultural differences affect your friendship?

Tuan - Nah.

Minseop - Culture doesn’t matter to our love.

How will you two stay in touch after camp?

Minseop - I’ll move to Minnesota

Tuan - And I’ll make sure to go to Korea. But only after he’s moved to Minnesota. But really though, we have our contacts through e-mail and social media.

 Marcus (Denmark) and Ethan (New York)

Marcus (Denmark) and Ethan (New York)

How did you two become friends?

Marcus - Ethan hosted me before camp. I just felt like we were the only two really speaking to each other from the start.

Ethan - It just felt really natural.

What do you have in common?

Marcus - I feel like some of our hobbies are similar.

Ethan - We both like the same music, we both play sports and video games, and we’re both really outgoing.

Do you think your cultural differences affect your friendship?

Ethan - I think it makes it better. We’re not the same, so we always have something interesting to talk about.

How will you two stay in touch after camp?

Marcus - Though video games such as Playstation, social media, and hopefully we can meet up again one day.


This week's Instructions

Monday

Transylvanian Dance - Andor (Hungary)

Gaga Ball - Eric (New York)

Tuesday

Chess - Teddy, Horace, and Udayan (New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey)

Tennis - Eduard (Germany)

Team Building - Jackson (Louisiana)

Wakanda - Kathleo (South Africa)

Wednesday

Volleyball - Tomoki (Japan)

Rubiks Cube - Konrad and Yuxin (Poland, China)

The Problems With U.S. Soccer - Jeffery and Oliver (Both New York)

Treble Clef - Tuan (Minnesota)

Topology - Volen (Bulgaria)

Thursday

Sustainable Development Goals - Emilia and Jaime

Architecture and Construction - Rajvir and Minesoep (New York, Korea)

Culture of Barbados - Gaziyah (Barbados)

Lyrical Structure - Roshan (New Jersey)

Privilege and Identity - Janessa

Life Saving - Luke (New York)

Saturday

Photography - Jackson and Lior (Louisiana, Israel)

Chinese Language - Yizhe and Yusen (China)

Identities - Darin (New York)

Using your Surroundings - Marc (Puerto Rico)

Making Tough Decisions - Jessica [Visitor]

Hungarian Culture - Benӧ (Hungary)

Sunday

Road Tennis - Jadon (Barbados)

Middle East Conflict and Peace - Ahmad, Maor, and Abdelnasser

(Palestine, Israel, and Egypt)

ID, Diversity, Justice, Action - Raina

The World Around Us, In Words - Andrew (New York)

Opportunities After Camp - Weronika (Poland)

Trial Law - Stephen [Visitor]