“Camp FRESH gave me a chance to give back to the community and be more than people expect from a teenager from the ‘hood,'” says Shareif Simpson. He is one of 36 teenagers who participated in Christiana Care’s three-year-old Camp FRESH summer wellness program for city youth.
The summer program teaches teens the benefits of healthy eating and they are encouraged to pass this knowledge along. The campers also plant gardens and staff a produce market in the city twice a month to help improve access to fresh fruits and vegetables. The teems attend classes on topics such as food-borne illness, healthy nutrition, CPR and responsible sexuality.
Campers are enthusiastic about the program. “You actually learn things,” Jhanea Brown says. Things that campers are committed to teaching their communities. “Sometimes people don’t want to listen and sometimes you kind of have to make them listen because what you have to say is important.”
“I can tell you something about health that might save your life. Why wouldn’t you want to listen?” she wisely asks.