MEMPHIS, Tenn — The Shelby County Mayor’s Office of Education is sending kids to summer camp for free.
Tuesday, May 17, Mayor Lee Harris announced its partners for the first-ever Youth Summer Camp Scholarship Program. The initiative will allow hundreds of kids to attend high-quality summer camps throughout Shelby County.
Tuition will be paid for through a $262,000 grant with the city. The grant will be portioned out and paid directly to the summer camp operators, who will provide scholarships to cover all camp-related expenses for hundreds of families.
The camps are meant to help make children more likely to be successful when school starts back up in fall.
“What I know about summertime is that if youth are not engaged, there are two things that happen,” said Dr. Cedric Gray, Director of Education. “Often times, there's what we have coined as the summer educational instructional slide - youth begin to forget a lot of what they’ve learned during the school year. The second thing is if there’s not constructive sort of activities, they could find themselves doing things that are deconstructive.”
More than twenty different organizations signed up to be part of the program.
Here is the list of summer camp programs that will provide scholarships:
- AngelStreet’s Crew University at Bickford Community Center
- Beyond Educating Foundation, Camp Liberation at Abyssinian Missionary Baptist Church
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis
- BRIDGES’ Bridge Builders COLLABORATE
- Camp Elevate and Camp Inspire at Streets Ministries
- Camp Memphis at For The Kingdom
- Carpenter Art Garden
- Girls Inc. of Memphis
- Harmonic South String Orchestra, Inc. at Metropolitan Baptist Church
- Image Builders Memphis’ Summer Arts & Career Program
- Kooler Kids Arts Enrichment Camp at Abundant Grace Fellowship Church
- Memphis Athletic Ministries’ MAM Summer Academy
- Memphis Jazz Workshop Summer Experience at Memphis Music School/Memphis Jazz Workshop
- Perfecting Gifts, Inc. at Perfecting Love Community Church
- Project Transformation Tennessee’s Project Transformation Summer Enrichment Program
- Pursuit of God Church
- Raise the Bar Summer Intensive at Collage Dance Center
- Rising Together Foundation’s SLAM Summer Academy
- Shelby Farms Park Summer Camp
- Spotlight Summer Camp at LilyRoze Studios
- Soulsville Foundation’s Summer Music Experience
- St. Paul Baptist Church’s SPBC Summer Camp
- The Independent Parent, Inc.’s ActUp-Child Behavioral Enrichment
- Young Actors Guild Summer Camp at Harriet Performing Arts Center
- Youth Academy of Dream’s Camp Outrageous
Families can view the full list of participating summer camps and information about how to apply at shelbycountytn.gov/3775/Summer-Camp-Grant-Program.