Summer Dreams

Recently a report was released that shows Michigan ranks as the 10th worst state for children living in high-poverty neighborhoods, and Detroit is the worst city in the country with two out of three children living in these neighborhoods. “Data Snapshot on High Poverty Communities” is a report issued by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Former Legislator and now President of the Michigan League for Human Services said the report should serve as a wake-up call.

“Even if you’re not living in poverty, if you are living in a neighborhood with poverty, it has far reaching effect,” she said. Wayne, Saginaw, Alpena, Genesee Ingham, Chippewa, Roscommon and Isabella were the counties with the largest share of kids in concentrated poverty, according to the report.                   

Overall, Michigan ranked 44th – one being the best – for concentrations of poverty. That is defined as a neighborhood where 30 percent of the population is in poverty, according to a statement. For a family of four, poverty is defined as $23,314 per year or less.

For the past 124 summers, The Society of St. Vincent de Paul has been helping address the problem of children who live in poverty by getting them out of these neighborhoods and giving them respite at a rustic camp on the shores of Lake Huron – Camp Ozanam.

Camp Ozanam’s   motto of “Accept, Share, Develop” helps children who live in poverty experience a different world view than they have seen growing up in these poor neighborhoods. A balanced diet, structured living, recreation and spiritual enrichment are all designed to be a week-long retreat experience for campers.

Our goal is to raise over $200,000 to help over 600 children embark on a path out of poverty by helping them make better choices when they return to their high poverty concentrated neighborhoods.

March begins our Summer Dreams pledge drive, our annual appeal to help send kids to camp. Won’t you help us? You can make a donation on line at or send cash or check.

Please consider making a donation to help us in this mission of giving children the opportunity to experience summer like the children who don’t live in poverty.


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