As parents we constantly wonder, “are giving the best possible education to our kids, are we offering them enough opportunities to grow, are we giving them the right tools to be successful?” For the last few years, the answer to each of these questions has a name: Forest Lake Camp or as we usually call it, the best family investment of the year.
When our oldest daughter Anna first attended FLC, we have to admit it was tough not being able to talk to her on a daily basis. We would log in at the FLC website several times a day to check if there were pictures of her, waited impatiently for her beautiful handwritten letters to arrive in the mail, and imagine what she could be doing every single minute. The moment she came back, it was evident how much she had changed. She was so much more confident, talkative, taller, happier, athletic, and had tons of stories to share. She tried things that were well beyond her comfort zone and she felt proud of it. She felt a sense of accomplishment that ten months of school had never offered her; a sense of discovery that no exotic travel has ever provided her; and a sense of fulfillment that I had never seen on her eyes.
As it was natural, her younger sister wanted to join the following year and they wanted to stay for a longer period of time. We still missed not hearing from them everyday but we realized what those weeks would mean for our girls and that was enough to subdue the yearning. They fell in love with activities they had never done before, from acting in a play to hiking and horseback riding. We also discovered a hidden treasure at FLC. Since my husband and I grew up in Venezuela, we have always instilled in our daughters an interest in diversity, different cultures and naturally our own heritage. We never expected that FLC was such a culturally diverse community. Our kids met friends from all around the world and got use to different accents and even got to practice some Spanish! We sent them to camp to experience nature and they got to experience different corners of the world as well.
We are incredibly proud to be part of the loving, nurturing, fun and diverse FLC family. Our daughters are more well rounded and confident individuals because of it, something we are infinitely thankful for. They cannot wait to go back this year, and we are looking forward to our now yearly honeymoon, thanks to a “sans-enfants” time. Thank you FLC!!!!
-Alfonsina Betancourt, mother of campers Anna and Isabella Siefken