Campus Children’s Holidays is a student-created, student-run charity that’s been operating for over 40 years. Every year, the charity provides free residential and non-residential breaks for children in the Liverpool area who are in need of them. Some come from families affected by alcohol abuse or have witnessed violence at home or in their neighbourhoods, others are young careers, and they all suffer from poverty. Campus’ holidays are an amazing opportunity for them to enjoy outdoor activities, to make friends in stable environment, and just to enjoy being a kid for a bit.
Like me, the volunteers who make these breaks happen are mostly Cambridge students (or ex-Cambridge students – once they’ve started doing Campus most people can’t leave!) who help on the camps for a week at a time. I know from experience that it is such a rewarding experience for the helpers as well as the kids – it’s overwhelming to help a kid ride a bike or go swimming for the first time in their lives. Volunteers are also the Campus trustees, making the important decisions and taking responsibility for fundraising, inviting kids on the holidays and running the whole charity. Through fundraising events and exec meetings Campus also has a strong social scene in Cambridge.