In our final post in the Why I Give series, Stephen Hoffman (‘59) explains why he gives, and how CRS has inspired him to stay engaged with Camp Rising Sun (CRS)/ the Louis August Jonas Foundation (LAJF) today. Stephen currently serves on the LAJF board, and on the Committee on Governance.
I was motivated to give back because I wanted to become involved with CRS. I hadn’t given in a while and I wanted to learn more about where the camp is today. Because of this, I wanted a member of my family to attend CRS as a Legacy Camper so they understand what I experienced at CRS, and have a similar experience. I was lucky enough to send my grandson this past summer. When my daughter and I came to pick him up after two weeks, we stood there in front of the Main Building watching him and his campmates share tearful goodbyes. Then, he ran up to me and gave me a huge hug and said it was the most amazing experience he ever had and it has exceeded all expectations.
CRS had a big impact on my values. When I look back on who I've become as a person, my values system, I learned it from CRS. I learned to embrace diversity, to live in a diverse setting, and I also learned to let my deeds speak for me rather than my voice. People have a tendency to brag, to say that they are important people, and that’s discouraged at CRS (and it still is). Letting your deeds speak to you, being humble through your words, and letting people figure out who you are by what you do are some of the biggest things that I learned at Camp.
In addition, CRS compels you to be a volunteer at the minimum and a leader at the maximum. I learned how to become a leader through running Camp. You have to step up and do the job- everyone has the responsibility to do the work.
- Stephen Hoffman
The Legacy Camper Program gives the child or grandchild of alumni the gift of Camp Rising Sun. Legacy campers join the CRS community for one or two weeks during the summer, pending availability. They take part in all camp activities and are an important part of our community that helps to strengthen intergenerational ties.