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Support the Town of Grafton’s Youth Program Summer Camp

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Support the Town Youth Program’s Summer Camp – An Open Letter to the Town Board of Grafton and all the Neighboring Town Boards

 July 30, 2012

Summertime and the living is easy… unless you are a parent and now have to find day care options for your children. I peruse my choices. I could just not show up at work until September and do lots of groovy things and really bond with my kids. Sounds like fun, but… I may not be welcome back at that stinky old job in September. Summer camps – lots and lots of summer camps around, but most of them cost $300 per week! Did I mention that I am not independently wealthy? YMCA overnight camp…. Sounds really fantastic. Wish I could spend all day canoeing around Lake George. $1000 for one week?! See above – not independently wealthy, etc. Let’s see… no relatives nearby to palm the kids off on. I suppose I could drop them off on a Troy street corner and let them hang out with the crack dealers during the day. An attractive low cost child care alternative and what’s more, they would learn a trade, but, darn it all, there seems to be something objectionable about this plan. Wait a minute…you mean to tell me Grafton has a free summer youth camp!?!? Wow! Problem solved! Praise and applause for the Town of Grafton for such visionary community planning to have a youth program summer camp in place!

I have a child currently in the Grafton summer camp and I will have another one starting next summer. My daughter enjoys the summer camp and it is a life saver for us parents. I hope it will be possible for my grandchildren to go to summer camp in Grafton some day. As a town and a community it is great to know we have this resource for our children where they can be safe and secure and learning and playing happily together. We as Town tax payers and community members should make sure that this program and programs like it continue to offer these benefits in the years to come.

Will we always have a summer youth camp in Grafton? Will the summer camp maintain the level of resources available to provide a quality day care summer alternative for our children? These are questions that get determined during the Town budget making process every year. We all know that everything costs money and nobody has enough money any more and nobody wants to pay more taxes. That results in a yearly budgetary power struggle over which programs get how big a slice of the pie. We are lucky to have a summer program. The summer program could be even better with increased funding, or it could lose some of its already scarce operating funds, or it could even be cut from the Town budget entirely.

So this is a plea to the Town of Grafton – please, please, please, for the sake of our Town children (and also their parents), keep the summer camp program funded and, if it is in any way possible, expand the service to cover longer hours and more weeks.

Thanks from at least one grateful Grafton parent.

John Leahy

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