I returned home from my 10th year serving at Royal Family Kids Camp in Bellingham, WA. I absolutely love this ministry. I love that kids who have had to grow up too fast are allowed to be kids for a week and experience true unconditional love. I also love the outpouring of support from the community. This year Mallard's Ice Cream and Boundary Bay Brewery gave at the very least a great deal on ice cream and root beer floats respectively for the root beer floats at the Carnival. People give what they can so that they can contribute to the happiness of a child's life that has not known a whole lot of happiness. Kids who have been neglected and abused get to see that there are people in the world who truly love them for who they are who may not have known them before that week.
Despite all the love I have for this, I hate sending my kids home. I hate sending my kids back to families that don't take care of them. Families that feed off of drama and chaos. Families that don't protect the weaker child to the point that a child who was so sweet and almost emotionless all week, never crying, is sobbing as she watches the video and is afraid to go home before someone who isn't her mom takes her home because her mom apparently couldn't be bothered to bring her to the church or pick her up from it. I hate sending my kids home. I don't understand how some people can break their kids like that. I wish more people would step up to fight for them and show them true love and how families should be. It makes me sad.