Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch

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First Ever Suryoyo Summer Camp!

This summer the first ever Suryoyo Summer Camp was established with the support of the Archdiocese of the Syria Orthodox Church for the Eastern United States. Our goal at Suryoyo Summer Camp was to develop friendships for life. The program was designed to provide a fun and safe summer camp program while instilling religious and cultural awareness in our children. The Daily Staff included a Director, Assistant Director, Teachers, Organizers, Parent Volunteers and Clergy involvement.

The Suryoyo Camp Board created a six week rotating schedule with a variety of classes and activities including sports, crafts, art, games, water activities, folklore, Capoiera lessons, science experiments and Bible and Suryoye lessons. A total of 115 children registered between the ages of 4-13, they were separated into age groups wearing colored t-shirts respective to their age group. We carefully selected a staff of 39 counselors: 12 Senior Counselors (Ages 18+), 17 Junior Counselors (Ages 15-17) and 10 Counselors in Training (CIT age 14). These counselors were trained to guide and be responsible for the children daily while ensuring their safety.

Each day began and closed with a prayer lead by a member of our clergy. Counselors navigated children to their proper locations as noted on the daily schedule. The children were entertained by many special guests such as Magicians, Mad Science, Extreme animals and Jack Black Basketball entertainer. The field trips included many exciting places such as the Liberty Science Center, Mets Baseball game, Peach Picking and Bowling. Each Friday the children learned Suryoyo Hymns and Cultural Dance lessons. Each Age group was assigned1 water activity day per week. Our Parents have been so generous to donate their time by teaching science experiments, art lessons, serving lunch and providing snacks and supplies.

Bonds that children build are strengthened throughout the years. Suryoyo camp has been a platform not only for the children but for the counselors and parents as well. Our goals have reached beyond the children and that is a Blessing.

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