The Journey Begins
It was Summer 2009. Fourteen-year-old Bri packed her belongings and jumped in the car with her grandparents on what would be the greatest adventure of her young life. It was a long drive from Nevada to Washington. Bri had no idea what was in store for her at this place called Camp Korey. Her doctor recommended it though, so while nervous, if her doctor and her grandmother thought it was a good idea – it must be! Immediately upon arrival she was greeted with smiling faces, the fresh smell of the Pacific Northwest and the sense that magic was about to unfold. Any first night jitters were now gone, and she found herself on the journey of a lifetime.
Prior to Summer 2009, Bri did not know other people who had medical conditions like hers. Imagine her delight when she saw for the first time she was not alone! There were others that understood what Bri felt and thought. They faced similar challenges, limitations, and obstacles. But, at the same time they could overcome, thrive, and excel . . . together. To this day, Bri’s friendships are the biggest gain that she took away from Camp Korey – whether it be the “OG counselors like Trylla, Rachael and Paige” to her best camp friend Kara!
Distance Makes the Heart Grow Fonder
Though Kara lived in Washington and Bri in Nevada they found as many opportunities as possible to reconnect. Trips started. Together, adventure was the name of the game. Bri would extend her Washington stays for months on end with Kara to attend Camp Korey reunions and programs. In turn, Kara would travel to Nevada as well, but the one shining moment they would forever share was a trip to LA to interview Full House’s John Stamos! Have Mercy!
Bri-coming a Role Model
Bri loved the experience of being a Leader-in-Training and the transition to a full-fledged weekly counselor. She gained life skills and found responsibility in being a role model for the younger kids. Her years as a Camp Korey camper gave her the tools to stretch beyond her comfort zone, which is something she could help younger campers with once she was a counselor.
Soaring through the skies like a bird was freeing on the ropes course zipline. Successfully climbing the rock wall was liberating. The freedoms and confidence that Bri felt at Camp Korey continue to this day! Her camp adventures ignited a sense of self-discovery that paved the path for a bright future. She found her voice as a child advocate for herself and other children. In finding her voice she set into motion a new path – her career path as a Child Life Specialist! She wants to bring to others the confidence she found at camp. Bri hopes to see Camp Korey’s new Mount Vernon location sometime soon. Luckily, camp never really leaves you! From camper to counselor and beyond, Bri carries Camp Korey with her.
Check out Bri in this video from 2013!