Stories

Children's Harbor and Camp Conquest

Volunteer Spotlight: Leah Dennis

Schuttinga Family

Volunteer Spotlight: Leah Dennis

Every night before lights out at Camp Conquest, all the campers and staff would have “closing circle” around the flag pole. Rodger Cofer would lead this circle by, first, asking if anyone had anything to share, then leading a chant that everyone followed along with. The theme of the camp was military, so the chant was performed in military fashion by marching along to the words. The chant went like this:

"Everywhere we go
People want to know
Who we are
So we tell them
We're camp conquest
Mighty camp conquest
We're survivors
Brave survivors
We're motivated
We're dedicated
We're strong as ever
When we're together
We are camp conquest
We are camp conquest
Motivated, Motivated
Dedicated, Dedicated”

Every time the kids repeated the lines “We’re survivors, Brave survivors,” you could feel the chills over every person there. To see children from ages 6-17 having fought and survived extreme burns, yet laughing and encouraging each other every day of camp was breathtaking. As a counselor, I truly believe I learned more from the campers than they learned from any of the staff. I remember a young child tell me that she was thankful for her burns, because it led her to all the people she met at camp. That right there is the true meaning of selflessness and bravery.

When Cofer asked if anyone wanted to share at closing circle, there was one night that a shy young boy stood up and said the most innocent, yet meaningful thing I’d ever heard a young boy. He looked to his best friend he made at camp and said that on the first day, he wanted chips instead of a banana for snack. The other boy smiled and traded him without any hesitation of selfishness. This small innocent comment brought tears to all of our eyes, as we realized how this small act of kindness was made truly through selfishness and kindness.

This camp was one of the most incredible experiences I’ve been able to be a part of. I went into the camp not knowing one person, and came back feeling like I had one hundred new best friends.

Learn more about all of Children's Harbor camp partners.

Filter by Story Type

  • All Stories

  • Givers

  • Patients

  • Camps

  • Services

Golf Tournament Benefits Children’s Harbor

RhizoKids Conference Provides Medical Exams for Children with Rare Disorder

Country Living Staff Visits Family Center

Church of the Highlands Members Serve in the Treasures & Thrift Store

A Letter from a Mom

Coach Pearl Swings toward a Million Dollar Goal

The Other Side of Camp: Relief for Parents

Family Fun

Spectacular Magic Show

Pig Iron BBQ Challenge

Sweet Family Moments

Magic Moments Sporting Clay Shoot

Hastings-Curtin Dinner

Davenport-Dixon Golf Tournament

Cinderella Ballerina Ball: A Magical Fairytale Event

Children's Harbor Welcomes Families Dealing with Rare Form of Dwarfism

Mom Achieves Success with Children's Harbor Program

Family Center Becomes Family’s Fun Getaway During Hospital Stay

Friends of Children's Harbor Auction

Children's Harbor receives grant to support Family Center

Christmas dinner brightens holiday for patients and families

Light the Way Vent Camp

A Letter from a Dad

COA School Nurse Workshop Lecture

The Beginnings of Camp Hemo

Awesome Day at Barber Museum!

Thanks to Boaters!

A Glimpse into the Education, Career Dev. & Transition Program

Volunteer Appreciation

Sounds of Healing

A Dr. Seuss Birthday Celebration

Bruce Pearl "Fore the Kids" Donation

Program Highlight: Counseling Services

Smith Family

Children's Harbor and Camp Wired Together

Schuttinga Family

Volunteer Spotlight: Leah Dennis

Children's Harbor and Camp Conquest

Children's Harbor and Camp BRIDGES

Girls Night Out for Diabetes Patients

Jaquares’ Lego Story

Will’s Wish

Jesse’s First Job

Return visit brings bear hugs & confirmation

Remote car race gets Caleb walking

Now cancer free, Sydney's got a mission

Beanie Babies bring big smiles

After 13,500 toys, Bill's not slowing down

Graycen fell in love with the music

How Can You Help?

The assistance Children’s Harbor receives from generous donors and active volunteers is central to carrying out our mission. Learn more about getting involved.