Internship applications are officially open!
Young people who are one-year out of high school are invited to apply by January 2, 2018.
There’s plenty of information about the internships on our website. In addition, below is a reflection from Katie Timmons, last summer’s Communications Assistant for Sawyerville Day Camp. We hope Katie’s experience will inspire others to apply!
By Katie Timmons
I already know that words will be inadequate, but I am going to try anyway.
The other day, my coworker asked me if my summer had been what I expected. The question threw me for a loop, mostly because I hadn’t really taken the time to compare the reality of my experiences to the picture I had drawn up in my head. I told him I would have to think about that for a second, and when I did, I realized that picture in my head didn’t really exist.
This summer, I walked into a lot of things. I walked into a religious denomination I hadn’t grown up in and didn’t fully understand. I walked into an office in a city that I still needed a GPS to navigate. I walked into a program and a job that, other than the descriptions I had read online when I applied, I knew nothing about. I walked into a group of people that looked a lot more like a family than a staff. And then, I walked into an elementary school.
Nine and a half hours of highway and a lot of uncertainty separated those school doors and my comfort zone, but even if there had been a clear picture drawn up in my head, it never would have prepared me for walking into that building. And it sure as heck wouldn’t have prepared me for everything that would happen once those doors closed behind me.
Regardless of how unprepared I was, or what few expectations I had, it was immediately clear that I had walked into something, but I never could have guessed how much that something would come to mean to me, or how fully I would become a part of it.
This summer at Sawyerville, though spent in a school building, taught me more than any school ever could. I learned about life and love and community and faith. I learned about laughter and friendship and courage. I learned about truth and heartbreak and perseverance. I never thought a job at a summer camp could so completely change my life and my outlook.
Each morning, I would wake up in the room (yes, room) that I shared with sixteen other people. I would put on my brick-red, slightly-more-faded-than-the-day-before staff shirt, and maybe a swipe of mascara if I skipped the third press of the snooze button. I’d walk into Greensboro Elementary School, make myself an impressively large cup of coffee, and then I would watch God go to work like I’d never seen before.
I watched children ignore what the world told them about the color of their skin or their economic status or their chances at success and instead watched them stand firm on their identities as beloved, cherished, gifted children of God. I watched people of all ages step out of their comfort zones and face their fears because they knew God was on their side. I watched little girls and little boys find role models and friends and Jesus. Every day, I sat at my desk and marveled at everything that happened within those walls, and every day, Sawyerville Day Camp changed my world.
I grew to love a lot of people during this whirlwind of a summer. I care for the sweet children of Greensboro, Alabama more than I ever thought I could. But I have a special place in my heart for the staff, because the miracle that is Sawyerville couldn’t happen without their selflessness and service, and it’s to them that I owe the best summer of my life.
Y’all inspire and amaze me. You love and serve so fully and so well. You are full of grace and strength and wisdom, often well beyond your years. Thank you for reminding me that miracles still happen and for teaching me to love and serve and live with everything I’ve got. Thank you for showing me that this is so much more than a summer camp or an elementary school or a small town in Alabama. Words will never do justice to you or the things you do in this place, and I will never be able to tell you the ways that you have shaped my heart.
And to my fellow summer long staff. My love for you is where words truly fail. Thank you for sharing that room with me. Thank you for holding my hand and hugging me tight. Thank you for being kind and gentle in your leadership. Thank you for bringing light and laughter into my stressful days. You have shown me what insane courage, boundless passion, and complete joy look like. You have taught me to live unapologetically and authentically, and to appreciate each little moment. You give every single ounce of yourselves to this place and these people, and it has been such a gift to witness. You have given me a home and a family I didn’t even know I wanted or needed, and I will never be able to thank you enough for that. I love y’all so much more than I could ever tell you. You are my and some of my greatest blessings.
So, I guess to answer that question that was asked of me, this summer was like nothing I could have imagined and everything I could have hoped for. And more. So much more.
Sawyerville, it has truly been my greatest honor.