By Ronan Dolan ‘20
A common phrase heard throughout the halls of Brother Rice is that “Brother Rice is for the boys.” The school’s first objective is to provide a proper Catholic education for boys and young men.
This includes providing a great camp during the summer for grade schoolers who want to come and experience Rice. But what about the kids who can’t exactly afford to attend this camp and still want to experience Rice?
Then those kids can turn to the Edmund Rice Camp, a completely free and fun week during the summer camp for underprivileged kids.
Facilitated by teachers Michelle England and Joe Augustyn, ERC provides attending kids with delicious lunches, fun prayer teachings, and a wide array of other entertaining activities.
Some of these activities include racing little toy cars, watching a live reptile show, or just playing basketball in the school’s gym.
Senior counselor Henry Barsch said, “I feel like ERC and the activities have been a good experience. All of these activities try to reach the interests of many children at the camp. These activities all help the kids stay engaged in different ways.”
Although Mrs. England and Mr. Augustyn run ERC, the students of Rice manage most of the camp and its many branches. Mrs. England said, “The student leadership of the camp has always been an integral part of the camp. Watching the students grow from little freshman to independent seniors always brings me joy.”
For example, senior leader Martin Murray will be performing the arduous task of head counselor of the camp, and senior leader Michael Nelligan will be in charge of the attendance of all campers and counselors.
Murray said, “Leading the camp is an amazing opportunity and I’m hoping to have the same success as previous leaders like Tom Durkin.”
In past years, ERC has developed a great reputation for its contribution to the Campus Ministry of Rice. Counselors who have worked the camp in the past have developed a great sense of appreciation for everything the camp does for them.
Senior counselor Bill O’Connell said, “It always brings me great joy to see the kids smiling while they are running around and having a great time.”
A major part of the process for setting up ERC is raising money for the camp and its requirements. The senior leaders will be completing a great deal of fundraising events ranging from a Christmas raffle, with prizes that include AirPods and Bose headphones to a charity sale at the Chipotle on 95th St.
Edmund Rice Camp has become an integral part of the Brother Rice community and Brother Rice is all the better because of it.