By: Hannah Jackson
Counselors running around like crazy to keep up with excited campers. Everyone sweating immensely under the hot summer sun. Yet, even in the midst of chaos, Ricky Ortiz finds himself in “moments of pure joy straight from the heart.”
Once Ricky experienced camp for the first time three summers ago, he was hooked. He met some Camp Cho-Yeh recruiters at a college event, and that very day, decided to make an hour drive to check out this camp he was hearing all about.
“I never knew anything like this,” Ortiz said. “I just connected with the guys that day, had good conversations, and could just tell something was different about them. Camp Cho-Yeh was truly a home for me.”
Since, Ricky has served as counselor, as part of the recreation team, and on the construction team intern for a year. While attending Kansas State University, Ricky uses school as an opportunity to continue doing ministry. He serves as chaplain in his fraternity, but he also helps recruit staff for Cho-Yeh. This past year, he was successful in getting one person to work at camp.
“But that one person is all it takes to change a child’s life in the one week that camper is here” Ortiz said. “And that’s what it is all about. I come here to experience an opportunity to change a child’s life. Seeing my campers leave at the end of the week with pure joy in their hearts and big smiles on their faces is everything.”