This winter I had the opportunity to spend a few months working at Quaker Hill Camp (QH) in McCall, Idaho. During my time, a phone call came from the bank about a piece of property QH has been trying to acquire as part of their long-range plan—property that a few years ago sold for 1.5 million dollars. It holds 18 acres that would be clear-cut, developed, and create potential safety issues for campers. The property was being offered to the camp for $200,000, but we needed to have the money and a plan within a couple of weeks because another buyer was interested.
I remember sitting in the office with other QH staff, all of us feeling overwhelmed with what to do. The $200,000 was a steal for the property but we didn’t have the money. In that moment, I had a strong sense that we had to at least try! We would never know what could happen unless we reached out to our community and supporters and invited them to share in this story with us.
We decided to use Facebook as our communication avenue. We began a two-week fundraising campaign through social media. The word spread from the small QH community to people who knew nothing about the camp except for what their friends were posting on Facebook about our campaign. Within the initial two-weeks we had $100,000! The campaign continued until, a little over a month after the initial approach from the bank, QH received $200,000 in gifts and pledges to purchase the property. What an incredible story of God’s faithfulness and a community’s response to a need!
My life has been impacted greatly by QH. Some of my best memories and childhood friends came from camping experiences at QH. I had the honor of learning from amazing camp leaders. God used my time at QH to shape my spiritual life and, later on, decisions about my education and career. Being a part of this fundraising experience offered me a glimpse into the impact that QH and camping ministry have had in so many people’s lives; a tapestry of stories woven together with threads of spiritual growth, relationships, fun, a love for the outdoors, and more!
Quaker Hill can move forward towards the future boldly, not only dreaming big with 18 new acres, but also with the confidence that they are surrounded by God and people who are committed to the camp’s future. There are many years of impacting campers’ lives ahead!