Camps lined up for military kids
By MSU News Service
BOZEMAN - To support youths whose parents are in the military, Operation Military Kids is offering a variety of free or low-cost youth and family camps this summer.
The events, scheduled in Montana and Idaho, include family retreats for just military families and free day camps where military kids join Montana State University Extension 4-H youths. A variety of deadlines are involved, and some camps limit the number who can attend, so Caroline Dettle, Operation Military Kids camp coordinator with MSU Extension 4-H, recommends registering as soon as possible.
The military family retreats have small fees involved. To raft together under the Big Sky, a program set June 30 near Malmstrom Air Force Base, the cost is $5 for a family. To participate in a family retreat at Bull Run Guest Ranch Aug. 7-8 in Cascade County, the fee is $10 for a family. To visit Silverwood Theme Park Aug. 13-14 in Idaho, the fee is $10 for the family.
Youth and teen retreats have no fees, though there is an optional cost, ranging from $10 to $25, for an event T-shirt.
For a multinight Bozeman Teen Leadership Adventure Camp, teens arrive at Lion's Ridge Camp 20 minutes east of Bozeman the morning of July 21 and leave the morning of July 23.
Overnight camps for Missoula, Mineral, Lincoln, Sanders and Lake county military youth are set for the 4-H Darell Fenner Loon Lake 4-H Camp on Flathead Lake. They include June 19-20, for ages 5-9, who must be accompanied by a parent, and a camp June 22-26 for ages 8-12.
In addition, overnight 4-H camps that invite military youths are set for Ravalli County. Its youth camp is July 25-28 for ages 9-12 and July 29-Aug. 1 for ages 13-19.
Military youths are invited to attend 4-H camps at no charge, and most are open to military youths from across the state. The camp at Darell Fenner Loon Lake 4-H Camp on Flathead Lake July 20-23 for ages 9-12 is only open to Flathead County military youth.
The day camps for military youths being offered around the state this summer include two in Yellowstone County: the Yellowstone County Cloverbud Day Camp for ages 6-8 on June 16 and the Yellowstone County Day Camp on July 24 for ages 9-18. Both camps are in Billings.
Missoula County is offering a day camp July 28 -31 for ages 9-13 in Missoula. Helena is offering two day camp experiences for military youths. The first is Fort Harrison Day Camp on Aug. 4-7 for ages 7-12 and the second is the Lewis and Clark County Day Camp on Aug. 10-12 for ages 9-13.
Operation Military Kids is a partnership of MSU Extension 4-H, Montana National Guard, Malmstrom Air Force Base, U.S. Army and Navy Reserves, the U.S. Department of Defense Joint Family Support Assistance Program, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, American Legion and many other organizations.
To learn more, contact Dettle at 406-994-6241 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where to find facilities:
VA Montana has primary care clinics in Anaconda, Billings, Bozeman, Miles City, Glendive, Glasgow, Great Falls, Lewiston, Missoula, Kalispell and Cut Bank, which opened Jan. 7 and a new facility is now open in Havre.
These toll-free hotlines offer immediate help:
• VA National Suicide Prevention Hotline
• National Guard Military One Source
• National VA Nurse Line (for health information)
866-369-8020. This number is answered 24/7.
To enroll in VA health care, call 406-447-7325 or toll-free 877-468-837 during week days to reach Fort Harrison in Helena. After hours, call 406-442-6410 and ask for the medical duty officer.