Reopening after Pandemic — 2022 Buddha’s Light Children’s Summer Camp

Seventy people – 40 kids from ages 6 to 10 and 30 young volunteers, gathered at Hsi Lai Temple for the 2022 Buddha’s Light Children’s Summer Camp on June 25. Trust and Determination inspired by Finding Nemo was the theme this year.

Buddha’s Light Children’s Summer Camp is an annual event of the First Division of LA YAD. Because of COVID, the normally three-day event was reduced to one day. Preparation began months ago. The camp decided to recruit youths aged 13 to 25 to train as camp staffs. A one-day training seminar was scheduled in order to pass on experience in communication, teamwork and leadership, and to recruit future YAD members. .

The 2022 Buddha’s Light Children’s Summer Camp activities included Buddhist Etiquette instruction, a theme-lecture on Trust and Determination, screening of Finding Nemo, crafting and games such as Break the Ice, Carnival, etc..

To encourage the campers, Superintendent Ven. Yi Shan announced, “The classes are designed with Three Acts of Goodness and Four Givings in mind. I hope you will experience it with your hearts, learn from it, interact with peers, and happily participate in every activity.” Ven. Zhi Xing, manager of the Dept. of Social Education & Outreach, gave instruction on Trust and Determination. She guided the campers on how to gain trust and discussed the importance of determination in life. Richard Yeung, advisor of YAD First Division, encouraged the children, through game-playing, to learn to trust each other, and to face the challenges of an unknown world, so that they may have the courage and determination to seek out life’s treasures.

After 34 years, the seeds of faith that Hsi Lai Temple planted have begun to blossom: many staff members were once young campers themselves, and now they are sending their own children to camp.