The Santa Monica Kiwanis Club pooled resources of members and affiliated social service agencies to create a character development camp for Santa Monica middle school students.

Fifty students spent a week at the Big Bear campgrounds participating in the program.

At the camp, the UCLA/Santa Monica Hospital provided pediatric exams for 20 students who do not have access to medical care.

Santa Monica volunteers from the YMCA and YWCA, Police Activities League, Boys and Girls Club, the Red Cross and 12 UCLA Circle-K students training to become future social service staff members were at the camp.

Students were taught skills in teamwork, self-esteem, tolerance for other people’s differences, how to overcome taunting and prejudice and appreciation for community service.

The Kiwanis Club specifically selected the students because they came from challenging backgrounds or were going through a vulnerable time in their lives.