Big City Mountaineers

Ok, so I hate making plugs for money, but this is SO COOL.

I work at a social service agency in the city of Chicago called Christopher House. I work in a after-school college-prep program for low-income students, grades 8-12. Almost all of our students will be first-generation college students when then finally get off to college. We do tutoring 4 days a week (gotta get those grades!), college visits, mentoring, parent workshops (gotta know how to get there!), and fun activities together. We have 50 students in our program who all hope to get to college one day, and we try to help them through all the obstacles that stand in their way.

One of the awesome things we do each year is take five girls and five guys from our program on a summer wilderness trip called Big City Mountaineers. I’m leading the girls trip this year and we are headed to the Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota for 8 days away from civilization. We will be canoeing, portaging, and camping in the middle of nowhere. Now I love to camp, but this is the hard-core kind. We’ll be pumping our own water, digging our own toilets, cooking our own freeze-dried food, and carrying everything we need with us for 5 days. On the trip the students grow so much, from facing their fears and solving conflicts to being a leader and dealing with personal struggles.

The cool thing is that BCM (Big City Mountaineers) offers these trips to us for free. The students and agency volunteers (that’s me) get to go for free. BCM also supplies all the supplies for the trip (tents, sleeping bags, canoes, clothes, shoes, food, equipment, etc). As you can guess, they need to raise a LOT of money to make this possible. Christopher House has been doing this for years, and will continue to bring new students each summer. Even though everything is free, I want to help them raise some money to keep putting on these trips.

So, if this sounds awesome, you can check out my website here if you want to make a donation. Again, I’m not raising money for myself- I already get to go for free- but think it would be cool to raise some money for BCM in thanks for all they are doing for our students. You can also check out the BCM organization at their website.

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