Summertime at Palmer Home

July 21, 2016

Summertime!  The word that ignites little thrills of joy in the heart of every school-aged child in the country, filling their mind with dreams of summer camp, baseball games, afternoons by the pool, and staying up late.  We all probably have similar memories of our own regarding summer memories- days spent at the local lake or pool, Independence Day fireworks, watermelon seed spitting contests or fresh blueberries off the bush.  Whatever your childhood summers may have looked like, we guarantee you’d find some part of them at Palmer Home for Children!

Summers on our campuses are exciting times for our kids, with plenty of work to be done and even more fun to be had.  During the day, our children can be found at any number of places.  Students participate in chores around campus, including work at the horse stables, help cleaning up around cottages, keeping our landscaping and grounds beautiful, and even gardening at our Hope Grows greenhouses.  While we love to have fun, we want our children to have a strong work ethic and sense of responsibility – and everyone knows fresh vegetables taste that much better when you helped grow them yourself!

We also strive to combat the summer learning lapse, especially with our elementary students. School may be out for the summer, but learning doesn’t end!  Many of our little scholars continue to attend tutoring sessions and participate in summer reading programs. Many of them have missed months, some even years, of school before their time at Palmer Home, so we want to ensure they have every chance to succeed academically.

Summer also brings exciting campus-wide events for Palmer Home.  In early June, most of our children attend Camp Palmer (read more about that here!) and give their Caregivers a few days off-duty while having an amazing time with the wonderful folks at IPC, Memphis.  Radiothon is another fun-filled summer event. On this day, our campuses join together for what we call Campus Combo.  During Campus Combo/Radiothon there is a huge cookout, inflatable water slides, water games, and field-day style events, all while the talented team at SuperTalk Mississippi join us for a day of live radio broadcasts and fundraising from our Columbus campus. A few weeks later, our high school students have the opportunity to attend LeaderSTATE, a leadership development camp at Mississippi State University where students gain insight from talented leaders in a variety of fields and begin to plan for their futures.

Many of our children have the opportunity to spend extra time with their sponsor families during the summer break or attend VBS or church camp with local churches.  A few attend athletic camps, and others participate in day camps held by local counseling agencies. Others hold summer jobs off campus, or even have the opportunity to complete an internship in a field that interests them.

And we can’t forget the fun available ON our campus!  At any given time, students are riding horses, swimming in the pool, fishing in the lake, playing a pickup game of basketball, or just enjoying each other’s company on the front porch of a cottage as they seek a bit of shade.  One thing is for sure- summers at Palmer Home are full of memories that will last a lifetime.

If you have a summertime memory of Palmer Home, we’d love to hear about it.  Share it with us here.