Nothing can make you feel so good as giving freely of your time and talents for a good cause.
The Carroll County Christian Workcamp gives young and old alike the chance to make a difference in their neighbors' lives.
The camp is an annual event involving many churches throughout the county. Churches of all denominations work together to improve the living conditions of some of the county's low-income residents.
This year's camp will be the week of July 17-22. Organizers hope to have 150 volunteers repair at least 10 homes. The homes are scattered around the county, from Manchester to Sykesville.
Volunteers of all ages and all skill levels are needed. The only requirement is the desire to share the love of Christ in this unique way. Volunteers may help from a half a day to the entire week. Workers under age 16 should be accompanied by an adult.
In addition to the satisfaction one gets from helping others, for teen-agers the experience is an opportunity to accumulate student service credit hours.
Volunteers will meet each morning at Wesley United Methodist Church at 3239 Carrollton Road in Hampstead at 7 a.m. After a continental breakfast, they will travel to the work sites.
Several churches will provide dinners for volunteers. Thursday and Friday evening sleep-overs are planned for teen-age workers.
For more information, call Rev. Jeffrey V. Odom at (410) 374-4027. Mr. Odom is the pastor at Wesley United Methodist Church and is the camp chairman.
In South Carroll, Wesley-Freedom United Methodist Church is spearheading the effort to recruit volunteers for the camp and is sending a group to participate. Call Don or Karen Hohne at 549-3621.
If you haven't discovered what a wonderful treasure we have in nearby Piney Run Park and the programs offered there, now is the time to visit.
The park has planned a variety of water-related programs including sailing, canoe and kayak lessons on the lake.
Pontoon cruises are planned daily. Some of the most popular pontoon cruises are those for the preschool set which feature pirates, Mickey Mouse, Peter Pan, Barbie, Teddy Bear and Sesame Street.
Birthday party pontoons are a good way to make the day special for those with summer birthdays. The pontoon will be decorated with balloons and hats, and party favors will be provided. Each child celebrating a birthday aboard the pontoon will be honored.
Call the park at 795-3274 for dates, times and fees for these activities.
While Nature Center members are aware of the great programs offered there, nonmembers may not know what they're missing. Scales and claws are the focus of a reptile program for ages 5 to 9 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. July 6. This program will include outdoor and indoor activities. The cost is $1 per member and $2 each for nonmembers.
A family camp-over July 7 would be a great way to enjoy the outdoors together. Families will set up their own campsites beginning at 5 p.m., then share a campfire supper, hiking, marshmallow roasting and breakfast the next morning. The fee is $15 for member families and $20 for nonmembers.
Call the Nature Center at 795-6043 for more information or to register for these programs.