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Local Camp Fire council wins grant

Camp Fire Heart of California Council will receive a New York Life Foundation grant for local programs to benefit middle school youths in Madera.

“New York Life Foundation’s investment will help our council expand middle school programming and improve data collection to better track youth success in Camp Fire programs,” said CEO Kim Lopez. “Local programs for middle schoolers include instruction in service leadership and community service project implementation, taught in leadership electives at Thomas Jefferson and Desmond middle schools.”

The initiative is the cornerstone of a new three-year investment of $1.25 million into Camp Fire by the New York Life Foundation. Nearly 60 councils across the U.S. will offer advanced youth development programs that focus on “Thriving from Middle School to High School.”

The improvement of data collection and expansion of middle school programming will provide Camp Fire’s staff with a deeper understanding of Thrive{ology} — its research and evidence-based approach to helping youth thrive socially and academically. Participants are able to learn and practice lifelong skills of leadership, character and management while enjoying programming in Camp Fire’s Out-Of-School-Time, Camp and Environmental Education, and Teen Service and Leadership offerings.

“Camp Fire is honored that New York Life Foundation continues to place such trust in Camp Fire’s Promise to youth,” said Cathy Tisdale, president and CEO of Camp Fire. “Our promise says, ‘Young people want to shape the world. Camp Fire provides the opportunity to find their spark, lift their voice, and discover who they are. In Camp Fire, it begins now.’ ”

Camp Fire is a nonprofit youth development organization serving young people and families. The New York Life Foundation has, since its founding in 1979, provided $216 million in charitable contributions to national and local nonprofit organizations. For information about Camp Fire, visit To learn about the foundation, visit


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