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Camp Ronald McDonald®
at Eagle Lake
A Project of RMHC Northern California
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What We Do

There is something magical that happens to a child when he or she is introduced to fresh air, a clear mountain lake, and challenging activities. This is what we provide kids every summer at Camp Ronald McDonald, and when we mix these key ingredients and step back to see what happens, we are never disappointed - we get magic!

At Camp Ronald McDonald, the opportunity exists to reach for the magic, the challenge, and the change in a beautiful outdoor setting. Of course, no kid goes to camp wanting to be challenged - we would turn children away in droves if we marketed the Camp in such a manner; but few kids turn down the promise of fun, activities, and new friends. For many who attend Camp Ronald McDonald, this is their first opportunity to go to camp and have a good time.
At Camp Ronald McDonald, this is what they get. During one session, all the kids may be in wheelchairs. Perhaps in the next, they have been homeless. And under the cover of crafts, activities, and sports, everyone can learn a little - if not a great deal - about themselves. For homeless children, a morning hike is not any harder or less beautiful because they are homeless. The fish on the end of the line does not know whether it is being caught by someone in a wheelchair or walker. These children all have abilities - our staff endeavors to have each child discover his or her own.

Challenges are not only healthy for a child, but also fun. Leading campers on a hike is a challenge for one child, requiring leadership skills and good judgement. Acting as cabin leader is a test for another child, and teaches peer respect and responsibility. Regardless of the particular challenge, the result is that a child's self esteem takes off like a bird in flight.

When challenges are tempered with the opportunity to succeed, mixed with a sense of fellowship, they can become triumphs - true sources of pride and accomplishment. When the mountain has been hiked, the talent contest won, or the boat sailed pride washes over our young campers like a cleansing shower, regardless of their abilities. These experiences follow our campers home like a valued souvenir, packed away in their hearts and minds, and taken out and occasionally admired long after Camp Ronald McDonald has closed for the summer.

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