January 17, 2023
Hello CR - Welcome back for the second video in our Hello CR series. This week I have been a little bit sentimental, thinking back to where we were this time last year. I promise not every video is going to be a reflection of where we were last year versus where we are this year. But this week is really special, and that is because this was the week that Cori and I met in Southern California for a little retreat after the sale of camp had been signed, the ink was dry, and it was really clear that we were moving forward and this was going to happen.
So, I wanted to talk to you about this week because this is when we created our mission statement - I know if you’ve been exploring the website you’ve seen this mission statement a couple of times, and I thought you might be interested in how we developed it. Our week was really nice just to be together and reconnect. I’m in Minnesota and she was in California at the time. And, with everything that we had been going through, it was a time for us to reflect not just on the year we had and the struggles, but also the many years we’ve had together.
We have both been at Robindel, Cori as a camper and staff member and me as a staff member, for 30 years. (It’s kind of crazy to even think that!) We had been working together running the summer part of camp since 2011. And so, it was really fun to be able to just discuss all the things that we love about camp, some of our frustrations that we’ve had over the last several years, and what we were excited about implementing at camp. But, before we could go there, it was really clear we wanted to make sure we had a very focused purpose and mission so that every decision that we made moving forward was tying us back to that, so we could make sure that we really had this compass of the direction we wanted to move into.
Many of you may have been a part of creating a mission statement for an organization. When we began we were throwing out words that were meaningful and that connected us to Robindel. There were three themes that just kept coming back as we were telling stories and discussing what we thought our purpose should be.
One theme was definitely Connection. Those of you who love Robindel understand that connection. We discussed how the connection was with friends that we’ve made over the years, and specifically with each other (and how that has grown and connected our families - our families are very close), which was important. But also, the professional side of connection. Neither Cori nor I started out to be camp directors; We both had other professions, and our experiences and growth at Robindel have connected us professionally as well.
Growth was the second theme that was recurring – personal and professional growth. We noticed that from young people to young professionals to seasoned professionals, coming back to a new opportunity for us as directors, we were constantly pushed and challenged in our personal and professional growth.
The last theme was Gratitude. We were grateful for the experiences that we had and continue to have at Robindel. The people, the spirit, the traditions, the opportunities, the sunsets, being on a lake for the summer - just that gratitude of being part of something like this, understanding that not everybody has these opportunities.
Through this process we could see that the purpose was really clear and our mission became even more clear: To inspire gratitude while building a community where personal growth is nurtured and friendship is found.
Thank you so much for joining me and learning a little bit more about our mission. Hopefully you now have a better understanding of the passion and dedication that Cori and I have in providing this space called Robindel for many future generations of both campers and staff.