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Bellevue Breakfast Rotary Awards $12,000 to Youth Eastside Services

Grant will mean more kids can attend therapeutic summer camp

(YES) is the recipient of the Bellevue Breakfast Rotary’s major grant for 2011-2012 which will be directed to the Explorers Therapeutic Summer Camp Program. The $12,000 grant enables YES to increase the camp size to host 30 youth this summer, which is the fourth year of the program.

The free camp targets low-income, elementary school youth who have significant mental health and behavioral problems and receive counseling at school from YES counselors. It helps alleviate disruption in therapy that occurs over the summer break and combines fun activities and group time to help kids manage socialization and behavior issues.

“The camp contributes to a significant improvement in the health and well-being of these troubled youth,” explained YES Director of Youth & Family Counseling Debbi Halela.  “This experience serves as a key part of their therapy, contributing to successfully meeting treatment goals and to becoming healthy, happy, productive youth,” she added.

Many of the kids who attend the camp are managing serious issues including physical and sexual abuse, learning disabilities and major trauma such as deceased parents or family substance abuse. Most would not be able to enjoy a summer camp experience because they either don't have the financial means or lack the necessary social skills. 

“The camp matched almost exactly the goals we wanted to achieve with this year’s grant, including serving children on the Eastside,” said Major Grant Committee Chair Lee Smith.

Chartered in 1985, the Bellevue Breakfast Rotary Club is home to more than 120 community-minded individuals.  The club has been recognized as one of the most dynamic, committed, and fun service organizations in the Seattle Metro Area and it is one of the larger and best known Rotary Clubs in Rotary District 5030.

-- Information from Youth Eastside Services

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