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Counselor Blogs- Winston

                  Howdy!!!  My name is Adriana Khalil aka Winston, a sophomore business major here at Texas A&M University (A-A-A-A-A!!!), and more than proud to share my Camp Kesem TAMU story.

                  Last year as a freshman I was sitting in my dorm with my roommates when one of them turned to me and said “Adriana, will you apply to Camp Kesem with me? I really want to do it.” I looked at her and said “Hmmmm… what’s that?” She replied, “Check your email.”

                  I searched through my TAMU email asking for counselors to apply, so I went ahead and began to research what Camp Kesem was and what they stood for. I was blown away. Kesem isn’t your typical service organization; Camp Kesem strives to make a difference in the lives of children. Needless to say I was accepted as a counselor (you should have seen me run into my dorm squealing, paper in hand) and from there I began an experience that was unlike any other offered on campus.

                  I was one of the only two freshman accepted as a counselor into the organization, but I was trained, respected, and treated like any other counselor both new and old. Once inside as a counselor, I applied to be the Drama Programmer and got the honor of getting to plan the drama (which turned into dance a lot of days) activities for the duration of camp. Throughout the day I separated from my unit for four hours while I hosted drama.

After months of training, socials, fundraisers, it was time for camp. I was assigned to the Blue Unit (BLUE CREW!!!) which consisted of 12-13 year olds. These kids were a blast; they were so smart, funny, open, but most importantly none of them were scared to be themselves. The coolest part of being the drama programmer was that I got to meet every single camper and connect with each one of them. The Grellow kids reminded me to stay young and dance like no one was watching, the Red crew taught me not to take life so seriously, the Purple kids showed strength in dealing with issues I don’t even know if I could deal with even at my age, and my own Blue Crew were so full of life and maturity I was just blown away. I also got the pleasure of getting to hang out with the Teen Camp at night and got to know each and every one of them. They were so open, mature, and relatable that I would forget that there was even an age difference sometimes.

The Kesem Kids are AMAZING, and show a sense of strength, understanding, and compassion that is un-comparable. I’m not sure who came away with more from the experience, the campers or me. They still brighten my day even months after just thinking about their outlook on life and the strength they carry. I am in college and I still think back to those dance parties with the youngins to keep me light hearted and the deep talks with my Blue Unit to keep me tough. Nothing can compare to having the experience of meeting all of the campers, and I am more than blessed to have met each and every one of them, along with my fellow counselors, directors, and admin that made the experience possible.

Until Next Summer 😀 ,

Adriana *Winston* Khalil