Sleepaway camps are like small nations! There are tons of moving parts, an army of people at the ready, and things have to be firing on all cylinders to ensure smooth sailing and hundreds of happy campers. This Mother’s Day the Summer 365 team would like to appreciate and express much gratitude to the female directors, who have a huge hand in helping make all of this possible. These are the women in front of and behind the scenes who “adopt” hundreds of surrogate children each summer. Little do your campers know that camp directors seize every opportunity to teach their camp kids life lessons that will stick with them for life. From daily activities to roasting s’mores around the campfire, each second at camp is a teachable moment. We interviewed all star camp directors who shared their thoughts and feelings about the motherhood they experience during their summers. Meet Lori Caflun!
What is your mission at camp?
I always tell my friends and family that I am the luckiest person on Earth. I am so blessed to wake up every day with a purpose so deep and so inspiring. To me, it is my passion to make the world a better place for children. It is my mission to help bring joy to children and give them a special place to call their summer home. Being a mother is my most important and proudest job. Like most mothers, I would walk to the ends of the earth for my three sons. Imagine knowing I would walk that same perimeter for my campers. I sometimes am overwhelmed at the notion that hundreds of children come through our gates at Camp Wekeela and find a haven of love and warmth like no other. Only camp people get that notion. The counting down to camp begins the minute the children leave in August. I think that is because at camp, our campers are nurtured, not judged, accepted no matter what, and we are family. Everyone is a member of that family for their own unique gifts. Why am I the luckiest person? I get countless daily hugs, I am a confidant to the staff and campers, I may actually be cool at camp, and most importantly, I know we have worked very, very hard to create the most amazing place on earth for kids to come be kids. Before each summer begins, my husband and I take a deep breath because being a camp director is an awesome responsibility. We have to keep all of your precious cargo safe at all cost. But as soon as we drive down the driveway and start singing our camp song, it is easy to remember why we are the luckiest. To go from being mom of 3 to mom of hundreds is the most gratifying and awesome experience anyone can ask for. Happy Mothers Day!