We all come from different places: different environments, different cultures, different experiences, different interests, different needs and different desires. And, yet, we are all here, together, seeing the world through our own lenses to make some sort of collective vision. What is it like to grow up in rural Vermont? In the middle of a city? What is like to experience the world from our perspective? What kind of an experience in the world do we have because of the color of our skin? Because of our gender or our culture or the shape of our body? Is it possible to really understand someone who is completely different than us? How does politics affect us? What is it like to be an immigrant here? What about a 7th generation Vermonter, or a Native American? What are our hopes for the world? What can we do about the problems we face as a society? What can rural youth offer the world? What can youth from the inner city offer the world? What is the role that young people should play in our communities and in building a future together?
Bringing youth together from many different perspectives is one of the missions of STEAM. We are planting seeds and nurturing them to grow wild in the safety of our community, exposed to different kinds of sunlight, wind, rain, nutrients and organisms. Today’s young people will be inheriting and running our world soon enough – it takes a lot of practice and effort to find common ground and solutions to the worlds problems. And, this camp is a place to develop those skills.
Discussing social issues is only one of the necessary parts of growing a healthy, active society. We will also be finding ways to contribute through service projects such as helping to build trail networks, working on a community garden, serving meals, connecting with elders, building projects and fundraising efforts. The specific projects we take on will be decided by all involved at the camp.