Embracing Equity

For the 31 years Camp HOPE has existed, we've tried to be an inclusive and safe space for all. We acknowledge there is always room for growth and are committed to doing better. We've worked collaboratively to create a Camp HOPE equity vision that will anchor our work moving forward and are excited to share it with you. In addition to our new equity statement and vision, we look forward to creating updated volunteer training specifically focused on Equity.


Camp HOPE Equity Statement


At Camp HOPE


  • We believe our volunteers should reflect the rich diversity of our state and are committed to ensuring our camp environment is a place where people feel they can belong. Everyone deserves respect, dignity, and self-determination. We embrace our differences as our strengths.

  • We recognize the role our personal prejudices/implicit bias play in perpetuating inequity - and we commit to hold one another accountable to continually evaluate our personal and organizational practices to combat injustice.

  • We believe Black lives matter and that systemic racism is real. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) will not be treated unfairly or harmfully by our camp counselors, and this behavior is not welcomed by anyone in our space. We validate the experiences of BIPOC communities as truths.

  • We believe that every community owes its existence and vitality to generations from around the world who contributed their hopes, dreams, and energy to making the history that led to this moment. At Lions Camp, we acknowledge that we stand on the ancestral lands of the Anishinaabe/Ojibwe, Menominee, and Sioux People - and we pay respects to their elders past and present.

  • We believe that love is love and that all people should be respected, valued, and affirmed inclusive of their sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. We are committed to creating and maintaining an inclusive environment for LGBTQIA+ youth and adults.

  • We believe that there is no one way to grieve - and that everyone should have access to the support they need to follow their own path. We all come to camp because we know and share the pain of loss no matter the cause, passage of time, relationship, or circumstances surrounding the death of a person’s loved one.


Equity Statement Definitions:


“Implicit bias” refers to a variety of automatic, nonconscious prejudices in which one group is favored over another group. People can be prejudiced and discriminate against others, even if they aren’t aware of their prejudice.(Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity)


#BlackLivesMatter was founded in 2013 in response to the acquittal of Trayvon Martin’s murderer. Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation, Inc. is a global organization in the US, UK, and Canada, whose mission is to eradicate white supremacy and build local power to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state and vigilantes. (Black Lives Matter at School)


Systemic Racism – When a racial group’s collective prejudice is backed by the power of legal authority and institutional control it is transformed into racism. Racism is a structure and a system, not an event. It can also be described as a system of advantage based on race where the advantages are white privilege. (What is Systemic Racism, by Karen E Quinones Miller)


People Of Color (BIPOC) refers to Black, Indigenous, and many other non-white people. (The BIPOC Project)


Land Acknowledgements

According to the Laurier Students’ Public Interest Research Group (LSPIRG), a land acknowledgement is “a formal statement that recognizes the unique and enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous Peoples and their traditional territories.”

“For non-Indigenous communities, land acknowledgment is a powerful way of showing respect and honoring the Indigenous Peoples of the land on which we work and live. Acknowledgment is a simple way of resisting the erasure of Indigenous histories and working towards honoring and inviting the truth.” (UCDS Schools)


Ancestral Lands


According to the Wisconsin First Nations Native Land Map, Rosholt, WI is on the ancestral lands of the Anishinaabe/Ojibwe, Menominee, and Sioux People.


Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Gender Expression (Human Rights Campaign)

Sexual Orientation- An emotional, romantic or sexual attraction to other people.

Gender Identity- One's innermost concept of self as male, female, a blend of both or neither.

Gender Expression- External appearance of one's gender identity, usually expressed through behavior, clothing, haircut or voice.


LGBTQIA+ is an umbrella term for people who identify across the gender and sexuality spectrum. This acronym can feel limiting to some who prefer other terms to identify themselves. The following terms and definitions below are always evolving and can mean different things to different people. (New York Times, The ABC’s of LGBTQIA+, by Michael Gold and Teaching Tolerance)

L- LESBIAN

G- GAY

B- BISEXUAL

Some people also argue that the prefix “bi” reinforces a male/female gender binary that isn’t inclusive enough. PANSEXUAL is becoming more popular and describes someone who is attracted to a person’s qualities regardless of their gender identity. The prefix “pan” means “all,” rejecting the gender binary that some argue is implied by “bisexual.”

T- TRANSGENDER

Q- QUESTIONING or QUEER

Queer has become an umbrella term that has shed its derogatory origins and is gaining acceptance.

I- INTERSEX

A- ASEXUAL or ALLY

+ - A denotation of everything on the gender and sexuality spectrum


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