Client Spotlight: Camp Jack Hazard

Camp Jack HazardThe trip from the arid agricultural floor of the San Joaquin Valley to the pristine verdant enclave of the Sierras may be less than a hundred miles, even by secondary, two-lane highways. Taking that trip can cross a chasm that can change the life of a school-aged child who is able to experience the wilderness on its own terms and learn respect for his fellow campers and staff as well as the wonders of nature.

That is the adventure that Camp Jack Hazard has created for almost a century now. Located in the heart of the Stanislaus National Forest, Camp Jack Hazard is the fruition of Jack Hazard’s original intent to provide urban youth with an uplifting, edifying wilderness experience. Back in the early 1920s Jack began ferrying young boys into the wilderness for week-long camping experiences.

With the eventual assistance of the Stanislaus County YMCA and the Stanislaus National Forest, that experience gained a permanent home in what is now Camp Jack Hazard. Now it is sustained by the Jack and Buena Hazard Foundation, which was founded by former campers and staff who wanted to see the camp continue and flourish.

Camp Jack Hazard offers rustic summer camp amenities (cabins, tents, campfires, dining hall) along with a swimming pool and low-challenge and high-challenge courses for team-building and self-empowerment. Any camping experience is determined as much by its staff as by its facilities, and Camp Jack Hazard benefits from the multiple generations of former campers who return as counselors, volunteers, and staff. This year’s registration is closed for 2012 camps, but the Jack and Buena Hazard Foundation always welcomes new members and supporting contributions – both for their operating costs and for the provision of scholarships for needy campers.