Dream Camp is a place where children learn that the power to achieve their dreams lies within.
A non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization, Dream Camp provides a safe haven for children experiencing hardships many of us will never know. Dream Camp invites children from two of the country's most violent and disadvantaged cities into our program, where they teach them the skills and provide them with the self-confidence necessary to achieve their dreams. Each year, over 500 urban youth in Hartford, CT, and Philadelphia, PA, participate in Dream Camp programs.
Learn more about Dream Camp at http://www.esfdreamcamp.org
Marc Vetri, Jeff Benjamin and Jeff Michaud traveled to Hartford to give Dream Campers there a taste of what will be every day fare next summer. VFFC announced this month that kids at Dream Camp in Hartford will join their counterparts in Philadelphia in enjoying fresh family-style lunches every day through the Foundation's Eatiquette Program.
For the second year, VFFC provided kids at Dream Camp fresh, family style lunches through their Eatiquette program. 300 campers enjoyed chef prepared lunches every day of camp this summer.
Delicious choices (panko crusted, baked chicken breasts and eggplant fries for example) replaced typical lunchroom fare. Table captains, chosen from among the campers, set and served their tables. Quiet, respectful kids listened as Chef Tia McDonald emerged from the kitchen to announce the daily menu. The last day of camp, the team that had earned the most points for trying new foods and eating their veggies enjoyed a private pizza party at the Vetri family's Osteria restaurant.
Campers at ESF's Dream Camp experienced lunch in a whole new way this summer. VFFC co-founder Marc Vetri and board member Jeff Michaud led the change in the lunch room. Eatiquette transformed every aspect of the lunch experience, from how the lunch was prepared and sourced (fresh food cooked on site by trained chefs) to how it was served (family style) to what children learned from it (teamwork, social and nutritional education facilitated by camp counselors at every table).
Camp directors report a decline in discipline issues in the afternoons and tell us children are excited about trying new foods and being part of the process.