In 1985, Founder Erinn Kanney was fifteen years old heading into her sophomore year of high school. She had a great life filled with good friends, an active social and athletic life and a wonderful loving family. Two weeks shy of school starting, her brother Eric was in a tragic accident and unexpectedly died seven days later. This tragedy was the beginning of her grief journey and the realization that many people just couldn't understand what she was going through because they'd never gone through it themselves. She remembers how lonely she felt through the first months of school and wondered how she was ever going to feel "normal" again. In the years to come, her experience offered her opportunities as a teenager and a young adult to help others that were grieving. These experiences planted the dream of starting a grief camp some day for your people so they could gather and know they weren't alone in their loss.
Twenty-four years later, with several dear losses in between, she found herself grieving another significant loss. This time, it was her beloved father. A year after losing him, she was experiencing sadness and exhaustion and had a deep desire to get away and get quiet with God. Through divine guidance, He led her to Camp Nelson in the Sequoia National Forest above Porterville, California. She had never been there before or heard of it but she decided to go in faith that it was where God wanted her. In the four days of solitude and silence, God gave her back the dream of having a camp for those who are grieving and continued to heal her heart in new ways as He walked her through his beautiful mountains. Jesus spoke to her heart in ways that only could be done by the Creator of the universe and showed her how to dream again. He led her into more healing and restoration of hope from losing her dad and showed her that this was the place where He wants her to bring others to experience the same.
Who We are
Camp ERIC exists to bring restoration of hope, through the demonstration of Christ’s love, to those who have suffered loss.
Camp ERIC is a camp/retreat for children and adults who have suffered the loss of a loved one. It is a place to retreat into the mountains to experience healing in their grieving process.
Why We Believe This
We believe that lasting healing comes from experiencing the love of Christ, as demonstrated by His followers, who come alongside those who are grieving. We give them a safe, nurturing place to share their stories and experiences so they can begin or continue on their journey of grief.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ."
2 Corinthians 1:3-5
What Will a Camp/Retreat Entail
We utilize worship, prayer, rest and recreation in a group and individual settings to facilitate opportunities for people to express their grief in a therapeutic, safe, natural environment. Our hope is that through these experiences, people will feel the love of Christ and will know that they are not alone in their grieving.
The camps/retreats give people the opportunity to share with others who can understand what they are going through so the isolation that often times accompanies loss is diminished.
The camps take place over a weekend from Thursday to Sunday afternoon. Retreats may be a full weekend or a one-day experience.
Our mission & vision
We are facilitators of restoring hope, through the demonstration of Christ's love, to people who have suffered loss.
We do this through worship, prayer, rest and recreation.
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