My history with Peace Village started in when I was in college at Western Oregon University. I was taking a class called Mindfulness and Stress Reduction. The class was taught by a man named, Dr. Jerry Braza. Dr. Braza, had been volunteering with Peace Village Inc. almost every summer at the Lincoln City, OR camp leading meditation classes for the campers. Dr. Braza, was also my advisor and over the years of getting to know one another, Dr. Braza thought that Peace Village would be a great place for me to complete my college practicum.
That was the beginning of my Peace Village story. That summer, of my junior year in college, 2002 I traveled from Monmouth, OR to Lincoln City, OR many times to work alongside Pastor Charles Busch, the visionary and founder of the original Peace Village to get ready for camp. At that time, I had no idea the impact Peace Village would have on my life.
The first day that campers arrived at the United Church of Christ building in Lincoln City I was hooked. I remember thinking and feeling, “This space and teaching is so needed for young people.”
I was amazed that this group of kids were prati practicing meditation and yoga, talking about media literacy, conflict resolution and most importantly, learning about other cultures and people. After that summer, I returned three more summers to be part of that amazing community and group of people.
I’m so happy to be in Hood River and to participate in continuing the magic of Columbia Gorge Peace Village for the campers, counselors, staff, and volunteers. I look forward to meeting all of you at camp this year!
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