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Shelby Rotary Club and the Foundation Send 26 Students to Summer Camp

This summer, 26 Oceana students will attend summer camp with the support of the Shelby Rotary Club, the Oceana Community Foundation, and its donor-advised partners! These students received a total of $7,275 in camp scholarships (or ‘camperships’) with individual awards ranging from $100 to $650 each. Awards were determined based on preference for first-time applicants and those with financial need. Given the camp cost for some students, awards were increased beyond the standard $250 limit.

Since 2015, the Oceana Community Foundation and Shelby Rotary Club have been partnering each spring to offer young camp-enthusiasts with camperships. The focus of the program is to ensure that children of all financial backgrounds can enjoy summer camp and further develop their skills and interests outside of the classroom. Students can apply for support for any camp of their choice, including arts, sports, religious, nature, leadership or academic-focused programs. Further, Shelby Rotary Club’s Camperships support overnight and day camps, as well as programs throughout the nation. Shelby Rotarian and Shelby Library Director, Tiffany Haight, oversees the annual program and facilitates the scholarship application process. She is the main contact for any questions regarding the scholarship program.

“As a parent and librarian, I see first-hand what a difference a camp experience can have on a child’s life,” Haight shared. “They come home with new stories, friendships, and cherished memories. Every child should be able to attend camp if they want, regardless of their family’s financial situation, and enjoy the opportunity to relax, have fun, and be carefree.” Camp is often a respite for young people, a break away from their daily lives to try something new and meet new people. One student shared their hope to overcome anxiety and make new friends “This is a big step for me as I hope to make more friends and try things that are out of my comfort zone.”

Awards were given to students of all ages, ranging from 2nd to 12th grades, across all school districts. Some will be attending local West Michigan camps like Camp Ao-Wa-Kiya, Grace Adventures Camps, and Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp. Other popular choices include Timber Wolf Lake – A Young Life Camp, sports camps at colleges, Camp Newaygo and Oceana Conservation District’s nature camps. Several Foundation’s donor-advised funds contributed to this year’s camperships, including the Shelby Rotary Club Fund, the Hart Rotary Club Fund, the JT Sackett Memorial Fund, the David P. Markiewicz Memorial Fund, and the Boy Scout Camp Fund. The Boy Scout Camp Fund is the Foundation’s first scholarship fund dedicated to supporting camperships.

Questions regarding the campership program can be directed to Tiffany Haight at the Shelby Area District Library. To support future campership awards or establish your own named fund, please contact Foundation CEO Tammy Carey at or 231.869.3377.