Sharing a Letter to Zac from Christopher’s Mom, Jennifer LaioDear Zac,
This is not an application, but I had to write when I saw what you and your wonderful team are doing. As I watched your video, my eyes filled up with tears. I am a mom of an 8-year-old that is diagnosed with ASD.
His name is Christopher and he has already been through so much in his little life to help him overcome all the obstacles (I'm using my manners by choosing that word) that come with this disorder. I am so proud of him, but each day, or week, or month, we still face challenges. One of our challenges is social skills.
I know that I am not the only Mom to ever say this, nor will I be the last, but it is heartbreaking to watch your child struggle to make friends, or get made fun of I can't just let my boy go out and play with the other kids in the neighborhood. If he tries, which is seldom, he usually comes back home with 10 minutes and says somebody was mean, or just simply, "I don't think they want to play with me, Mom." There are few birthday invitations, play dates, sporting events, etc.
I am not writing this in self-pity, but only to make the point that summertime is not a time that our family can just sit back, take a break and he idle. Just like Marie Sams said in your video, it's crucial that we keep our kids busy. But, most importantly, for them to be surrounded with friends and teachers in an accepting, nurturing and loving environment - like the one you are going to offer.
I don't know you personally, but I feel like I am connected to you somehow because of your spirit and dedication to helping children who have trouble helping themselves. For standing up for those who face challenges in life that come easy for so many others. I applaud your mission, and respect you genuinely for the time and effort you are putting forth to make your dream become a reality.
I was raised in Rome, Georgia, but live in Ohio now. I am so excited for the day when we can come back south, "sink our toes in the clay" and visit your camp! I hope this letter makes it to your hands somehow and you are filled with joy knowing that your cause is a blessing for so many families. I believe you're a vessel that God is working through to help our beautiful, innocent children become stronger and happier.
Prayers for your camp's growth and for all those who will make it possible!
P.S. I love your music, too!