Greetings! My name is Julia Hohner and I am thrilled to join the St. Vincent de Paul Detroit team as the Director of Camp Services. While I’m new to the organization in this position, my connection with the camps extends nearly a decade—I started as a counselor at Camp Ozanam in 2012, worked there for five years, and have volunteered at the camps ever since. Taking on this role feels like coming home in so many ways and I can’t wait to work with you in the coming years to continue building and improving our camps.
For nearly a century, St. Vincent de Paul has been providing children from southeast Michigan, who wouldn’t otherwise have the opportunity, the chance to enjoy the excitement and adventure of a summer camp experience. More than 100,000 children have splashed in the waves of Lake Huron, learned new skills, slept under the stars, built their self-confidence, and grown in their faith. After pausing program operations during 2020, we are overjoyed to be able to safely resume serving campers this year—in no small part due to the generosity of so many Vincentians who have committed their time, talent, treasure, passion, and prayers to camp.
Camp will certainly look different this year. There will be LOTS of cleaning, cabin groups will be smaller and spaced out, campers will wear masks during some activities, and our activity schedules will change a bit. But alongside our fervent commitment to the health and safety of our campers (which you can learn more about here) is a promise to preserve the magic of summer camp. Even though this will look different than any other summer at Camp Ozanam, our goal is that campers will remember their excitement, laughter, and spiritual growth at camp above all else.
While the summer camping season may seem far away, with the start of April we are now less than 100 days from our first day of camp! In the next several weeks, we hope you’ll be able to support us in making this summer a success. Here’s how you can help:
- Enroll Campers – Your Conference President has received a packet with our new enrollment procedures and a list of campers who we’d love to return in 2021. If you’re interested in helping to enroll campers for your Conference, please connect with your President to learn more about how you can help and some upcoming enrollment training opportunities.
- Join Us for Camp Work Day – On Saturday, May 8th from 9 AM to 4 PM Vincentians, alumni, and volunteers from across the state will be joining us at camp to clean, do yard work, and get our facilities ready for the summer. You can check out the details of the day here or click here to register for Camp Work Day.
- Help Recruit Summer Staff – A successful summer at Camp Ozanam is always dependent upon a strong staff—passionate and capable counselors, activity specialists, team leaders, cooks, and maintenance staff are essential. Do you know someone who would be a good fit for our summer staff? Check out our website to learn more about available positions and learn how to apply.
- Go Golfing – Yes, you read that right! Even a day of golf can help support camps. If you haven’t already, be sure to register for this year’s Annual Golf Outing to support St. Vincent de Paul’s camping program. You can access the online registration form here.
Thank you in advance for all of your support—without you, my work would not be possible. I can’t wait to see what this summer has to hold and to share with you the joy, love, and blessings that your hard work will make possible this year.