With this issue of Letters from CAMP Rehoboth, we return to a bi-weekly publishing schedule, so look for a new issue every other Friday all summer long. When we reach this point on the calendar every year, Murray and I always joke that we’re about to “go under water until September”—though now that I think about it, we’re not joking at all! “See you in September” is more than a song title to the two of us.
On April 26, I attended the Unity Rally at Legislative Hall in Dover to show support for Delaware’s Muslim-American Community. The event was organized in the wake of the troublesome words spoken by Delaware Senator Dave Lawson on the floor of the Senate after he and Senator Colin Bonini walked out during in Invocation given by Tarek Ewis, imam of the Masjid Isa Ibn-e-Maryam mosque in Newark and Naveed Baqir of the Delaware Council on Global and Muslim Affairs. The Rally was an upbeat reminder than no matter one’s religion loving one another is a shared goal for all of us.
On the same day as the Unity Rally, I attended a press conference on the steps of Legislative Hall where Senator Harris McDowell announced the introduction of a bill that would ban conversion therapy for LGBTQ youth in the state of Delaware. In speaking about the bill (named SB65), Senator McDowell stated simply that, conversion therapy is “child abuse.” The bill contains nine pages of reasons to ban conversion therapy—including “increased risk of shame, guilt, hopelessness, stress, and anger, thus increasing the risk of anxiety, depression, and self harm.”
On April 12, I was privileged to represent CAMP Rehoboth at the Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) Day at Goldey-Beacom College in Wilmington. The students were very appreciative of our participation—especially after they realized that Sal had loaded me down with CAMPsafe condom packs to use as giveaways. As can be seen in the In Brief section of this magazine, while I was there I snapped a photo of some of the students with our rainbow CAMP Rehoboth banner.
Even a casual glance at this issue of Letters should make it clear that we are in the midst of our annual CAMP Rehoboth Membership Drive. On the cover we feature a few of our members, and continuing in later issues we will learn why they joined CAMP Rehoboth. In his CAMPmatters column, Murray writes about the members and volunteers who are the “People of CAMP,” and he reminds us that individuals connect to CAMP Rehoboth in many different ways. Please, if you are not a member of CAMP Rehoboth, have not yet renewed your membership for the year, or your membership has lapsed, go to our website or call the CAMP Rehoboth office and join today. A word of thanks to Jane Blue for chairing the Membership Committee, to all those who serve on that committee, to staff level volunteer Ann Evans for managing our membership data, and to Glen Pruitt for drafting this year’s membership campaign.
It should be obvious to the readers of this magazine that very little happens around CAMP Rehoboth without the support of our talented volunteers. On April 29, we said thank you to many of them at the Annual Volunteer Appreciation Party. Be sure and check out photos from that party in CAMPshots. Thank you to Leslie Sinclair for serving as our interim Volunteer Committee Chair and to everyone on her team for hosting that event for us.
Leslie has also taken on the role of CAMP Rehoboth arts coordinator, and she and Sal Seeley are producing the new 12x12xHeART art auction and show in the CAMP Gallery from May 7 to the closing party on May 27. Bidding for the auction will all be online, and is scheduled to begin in early May. Watch for details on the CAMP Rehoboth website.