25 Stories: Seleena Jackson

Junior counselor (2015-present) 

Seleena Jackson

My mom was in the AIDS foundation in Chicago, so she had a connection with certain other people and they told her about the different camps for people that were impacted by HIV and AIDS.

I started off three years ago here. I’m a JC (Junior counselor) now. I wanted to be a counselor because I’ve seen the difference that counselors have on you when I was a camper. So I just wanted to do the same thing for other campers.

My AP (Adventure Program) year was my first year and I didn’t really know anyone here, so I kind of bonded with everybody on the first day and that was really good. A lot of my friends come back year after year in Malibu, California (for the Camp Hollywood HEART program). I’m connected with everybody there. The rest of the year I always stay in touch with them, or we hang out in Chicago. I keep in touch with basically everybody that I’m friends with.

“I’ve seen the difference that counselors have on you when I was a camper. So I just wanted to do the same thing for other campers.”

Camp made so many differences in my life from bad mistakes to good things coming at the outcome, because I was always shy and I would kind of distance myself from people and it changed my perspective on life, like try to get to know people.

My favorite activities would be biking and fishing. I’m kind of bad at fishing, but still.

The advice I would give to someone afraid to come to camp would be to just be yourself. You can be shy and nervous, but at the end of the day they will still accept you and somehow you’ll probably break out of your shell by the end of the week. So just be yourself and if you want to stay to yourself that’s also an option too. Just try to participate in one activity and see how you like it.

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