|by Murray Archibald|
|Change of Heart
These are tumultuous times for the world, with huge changes taking place all around us: globalization, terrorist activities, war, political unrest, AIDS, environmental problems, rising food and oil costs, and uncertainty about our economic situation. Is it any wonder that we find it easier to embrace what is familiar in our lives than to talk about change?
In a recent community meeting for CAMP Rehoboth, someone reminded us that progress, for many, is a fearful thing, and that most of us, to some degree or other, resist change. Remember the uproar a few years ago when the City of Rehoboth presented the plans for the downtown revitalization project? Half the town moaned and groaned and predicted gloom and despair.
Back when Epworth United Methodist Church made the decision to move out of town, I have to confess that I resisted the change for a long time. Part of it was, and still is, a deep belief in the importance of an active downtown community, but I also, I'm sure, just didn't want to deal with the changes it would impose on my own life. Once I made up my mind to embrace the change, even to welcome it, my own fear and concerns were replaced by joy and enthusiasm and great excitement for the possibilities that the new location would provide.
Fear of change is understandable, but so very often it is completely unnecessary and a waste of our time and emotional resources. When we face head-on the changes in ourselves and in the world around us we frequently discover that our individual perspective, once it is no longer narrowed by fear, expands to encompass a whole new range of creative ideas and possibilities.
Back when we started CAMP Rehoboth, the naysayer's were numerous. Many times we were assured that "it just couldn't be done." There was even concern among some members of our community because we were putting the early (and much smaller) issues of this magazine out on the streets for anyone to see. Advertisers were at first reluctant to "come out" and be seen as supporting "that radical" new publication. Hard to believe, now, isn't it?
At every stage in the evolution and development of CAMP Rehoboth, there have been some negative voices fighting our positive ones, and frankly, I'd be shocked if there were not. That's just life, and to a certain extent it does, indeed, make us stronger. Many times, however, when I really get to sit down and talk to people about their specific concernsbe it a CAMP Rehoboth matter or something altogether unrelated, we both discover that the issues at hand are colored more by our own fears, uncertainties, and imagination than by some tremendous problem that can't be solved.
Today, as there has always been, there are still some voices of resistance in our community when it comes to the new buildingand even the Community Center itself. "What do we need it for?" is a question I hear from time to time. Fortunately, that's a question that I love answering, and this column has been full of answers to it over the many years that we have been working to build it.
All of those answers, however, pale beside this one: We are building it for the future.
We are not building it so we can keep doing the same things we have always done, but rather so we will be ready and able to create a future community that can handle the needs, creativity, and inventiveness of the generation who will follow in our footsteps. If we can leave a strong foundationand that includes finding ways to pay for itif we can leave a welcoming home where creative potential can blossom and that fosters a positive and healing message for all people, then we have done a good thing.
Support for the Community Center, and I'm not talking financial at the moment, comes at many different levels. What we need now is for all of us to stop being afraid of change, to stop complaining about the things we don't like, to commit our passion and our energy to creating new programs and inventing a future built on the hopes and the hearts of all of us. Each and every time one of us is able to speak with enthusiasm and hope, especially to young people, we take a step closer to creating the future that all of us hoped for when we first conceived of an organization like CAMP Rehoboth.
Though Steve and I are committed to CAMP Rehoboth for as long as it takes, there will come a day when for the good of all we must step aside for new leadership with ideas beyond our wildest imaginings. It is our deepest hope that when that day comes we all remember that change is good if we are not afraid of it.
CAMP Q & A
CAMP Questions and Answers
Why is part of the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center property leased to other businesses?
The CAMP Rehoboth Community Center property is composed of two Baltimore Avenue lots37 and 39 Baltimore Avenue. At present, the eastern half of the property contains the main Community Center buildings (including the new construction). The CAMP Rehoboth Courtyard occupies a portion of both properties. The building on the western side of the propertynumber 39is for the present being maintained as rental property for two reasons. First and foremost, the rental income it generates is crucial to paying the mortgage on the entire Center. The second reason is, the businesses add a vital element to life in the CAMP Courtyard (just try to imagine it without Lori's Caf or Lambda Rising). In the long range plans for the Center the building at 39 is the future, and can be developed for additional Community Center space, as needed, or maintained as an income producer, also as needed.
Women in the community have raised over $65,000 to cover the Angel/Wish List cost of the Women's Room in the Community center. Is there a similar effort underway by the men?
Three women, all members of the CAMP Rehoboth Development Advisory Board, Beth Cohen, Jackie Goff, and Stephani Allison, organized the effort to raise the money needed for a Angel listing for the women's room in the new Community Center. Several discussions have taken place among men in the community and interest has been expressed in the effort, but so far not one has taken the lead on the projectthough the challenge has been made.
What is the small structure currently being added onto the older building that houses the offices of the Community Center?
The structure being added to the side of the building is a kiosk. The kiosk was conceived as a connection between the CAMP Courtyard and the office that would provide a place that could be staffed by volunteers to provide information or to sell tickets for upcoming events and activities for, not just CAMP Rehoboth, but for other organizations that partner with CAMP Rehoboth. The front side of the kiosk will provide a covered community bulletin board and the top will support signage for the Community Center. New stair units are also being added on both sides of the courtyard.
Have questions about CAMP Rehoboth and the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center? CAMP Q&A will try to answer them. To submit a question email it to email@example.com.
Thank you to all the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center Volunteers for the period of July 25-August 7.
Tony Burns Charlie Lee Michael Muller Dennis Nelms Mark Owens Barb Ralph Chris Sampson Carlotta Whitney
Loree Arnold Harvey Chasser Becky Craft Coca de Silveira Teri Dunbar Gene Dvornick Ellen Feinberg Lynn Finaldi Beth Fitton Keven Fitzsimmons Kim Hobbs Fay Jacobs Maureen Keenan Al Knipe Charlie Lee Doris Lauckner Danny Martin Jeff Moore Mary Morgan Anne Mundel Barb Ralph Lesley Rogan Chris Sampson Sal Seeley Guillermo Silveira Jeff Stroud Mike Welsh Lisa Zimmerman
*Rainbow Thumb Club
Matt Carey Ward Ellinger Rob Freeman Tony Ghigi Steve Hoult Anne Mundel Bud Palmer Ken Reilly Tom White
*CAMP Courtyard Caretakers
Murray Archibald, Founder and President of the Board of Directors of CAMP Rehoboth, is an artist in Rehoboth Beach.
LETTERS From CAMP Rehoboth, Vol. 18, No. 11 August 08, 2008