SWISSGEAR.com, Donates 1,000+ Backpacks to Camp Harbor View
Kids, summer camp and backpacks go together like peanut butter and jelly. That’s why Group III International Ltd., parent company of SWISSGEAR.com, donates more than 1,000 backpacks each summer to Camp Harbor View in the Boston area. Whether packing for camp, going on day hikes or preparing for an overnight campout, the youth attending CHV have rugged packs they can trust to stow their gear securely and in style. Participants receive Swissgear Backpacks on the first day of the session along with their camp T-shirts and water bottles.
About Camp Harbor View
Located on Long Island in Boston Harbor, the camp first opened in the summer of 2007. The idea behind Camp Harborview is to provide inner city kids with a summer program that gets them out of town during the day. At CHV, they learn new things, socialize and avoid the violence they would be likely to encounter if they had stayed at home.
The Harbor View facility is a renovated military base that had become municipal property. Spearheaded by then Mayor Menino and local businessman Jack Connor, the camp is a joint project with the Boston Boys and Girls Club. In response to the urgent need for the program, it was ready to welcome its first wave of 300 participants just 109 days after the renovation of the facility began in March 2007.
The campus consists of the Thomas M. Menino Great Hall where campers and staff eat communal meals, an Art Pavilion, a swimming pool, classrooms, and an amphitheater. Camp Harbor View’s climbing wall, at 55 feet high, is the tallest structure on the island. There is even a pier where the program’s sailboats are moored between sailing classes.
Keeping sports equipment together, such as balls of all sizes, rackets, mitts, swim goggles and towels, extra clothes and a sweatshirt can be difficult during action-packed days at Camp Harbor View, so campers need a pack they can rely on.
Some campers received the SWISSGEAR 2821 Laptop day pack which has a roomy main compartment plus exterior zippered pockets for all the daily essentials at camp or in the classroom. The zip compartment pocket features a key clip, dividers and a tablet pocket so every item will have its designated place as well as a handy exterior mesh water bottle holder for those carefree hikes to the CHV beach.
CVH Camp Activities
A wonderful green space within sight of the Boston city skyline, Camp Harborview offers tons of outdoor recreation opportunities in five focus areas:
- Leadership Development
- Sports and Fitness
- Knowledge Is Power
Under the Arts umbrella, such activities as dance, music and crafts reside. Aquatics includes swimming and other pool activities as well as kayaking and sailing in the bay. Sports and Fitness encompasses rock climbing, tennis, baseball, basketball, soccer, lacrosse, golf and cycling. Leadership Development and Knowledge Is Power each involve both classroom time and fresh-air activities.
Because of the wide scope of offerings at CHV, campers need to bring along a variety of gear and equipment on any given day. That’s why the SWISSGEAR 5505 Laptop Backpack is also a camper favorite. The 5505 pack provides plenty of cargo area as well as comfort features like cushioned, breathable suspension. The quick zip front pocket is perfect for bus passes, IDs and the like while the outer mesh pockets are just the right size for a water bottle or a cold soft drink.
Who Can Go to Camp Harbor View and What Does It Cost?
To attend summer camp at Harbor View, campers must be:
- Boston city residents
- Entering grades six, seven, eight or nine in the upcoming fall
- Residents of a participating neighborhood with openings for camp
The cost to attend a four-week summer day camp session may be high, but fortunately for campers, all their costs are covered. Daily transportation to and from camp, three meals per day and year-round resources are all included.
CHV Spotlight: Challenge Course
When your boat lands at the Camp Harbor View pier, you can’t miss the 50-foot rock wall, which is the anchor of the camp’s challenge course. It is also part of one of the most impactful learning experiences on offer at the camp.
Campers who accept the challenge learn teamwork, trust, self-confidence and a sense of accomplishment while having fun navigating the ropes, overcoming obstacles and zip lining to victory. They learn to trust their peers as they actively problem-solve together.
Tweens and teens crave challenges and risk, according to the UCL Institute for Cognitive Neuroscience. When the challenge takes place within a safe environment, it can promote positive emotional, physical and social strides. One study showed that engaging in challenges can even help to alleviate depression in youths.
Many of the activities offered at Camp Harbor View such as kayaking, team sports, rock climbing, swimming and the ropes course challenge campers to reach new heights of achievement. Their self-esteem soars as they achieve individually and as an integral part of a team.
It’s important that all team members carry their own weight, and that’s easier to do with the 5686 Computer Backpack. Some of the essentials for campers on the ropes course, on the playing field or out on the bay include a bandana or baseball cap, water bottles for hydration, extra clothes in case of weather changes plus plenty of high-protein snacks.
This pack handles all that and more without breaking a sweat. Additionally, like all the packs donated by Group III International Ltd. to CHV, these day packs boast an ergonomic design that helps lighten the load, breathable panels that keep you cooler as you play or work, and lots of cargo space to handle your daily essentials.
CHV Community Outreach
Although CHV on Long Island operates only during summer months, the organization supports Boston neighborhoods year-round with a number of community outreach projects. Clinical services such as crisis intervention, individual therapy and family therapy are available to Boston residents free of charge on a completely confidential basis.
CHV staff can also help Boston families connect with community resources such as:
- Assistance with housing and/or rent for families in transition
- Legal services
- Emergency shelter
- Cooking programs
- Parent Coffeehouses
- Thriving Family Workshops
Day camp is just one of the reasons to carry a handy pack. The 2789 Laptop Backpack is designed for multiuse all year long, so once summer is over, it transitions seamlessly to days at school, work, team sports and the gym. The dedicated compartment keeps laptops up to 15 inches secure when you are on the move.
Whether you are attending a Parent Coffeehouse, Thriving Family Workshops or just meeting with a CHV staffer to learn about other support services, the 2789 backpack keeps your notes neatly stowed, your cell phone at the ready and your car keys or bus pass accessible.
Support for CHV
Funding for the camp and the participants comes from contributions from organizations such as Group III International as well as fundraiser events. The Citython 5k Run and the annual Beach Ball, both held in Boston, benefit Camp Harborview.
The Group III backpack donation helps campers keep what they need close by for all of the exciting activities CHV holds in store. Bright colorways and innovative storage make these packs ideal for camp and perfect for the school year.
For more information on contributing to the Camp Harborview efforts, please visit www.campharborview.org. From volunteering and mentoring to product donations and monetary contributions, the youths and families supported by this dedicated organization would appreciate all efforts…big and small.