My daughter is away at summer camp this week.  We really miss her and wait each night like love-stricken teenagers to get a text detailing her day.  Last night’s message said simply “Having a great time!!!!!! . . .Got to apply brains to this girl’s face -- it looked awesome!!!!!! Love you!”  

Now isn’t that exactly what any parent loves to hear?  To explain, she is taking a class on special effects and putting together a film on zombies, so that may make things a bit clearer.  Summer camp is such a great place to have new experiences and discover and learn and find out about some of those things that you are passionate about.

In fact, I want to go to summer camp.  I never went, but some of my fondest memories as a child involve my summers spent on a lake in northern Michigan.  It was there I learned that I loved to fish.

 While I didn’t meet him fishing, one of my favorite people is Rod Martin, who chairs the grants committee on NCCF’s state board. He is an active fundholder, sits on the advisory board of our local partner, the Onslow Community Foundation, and is a successful business person, husband and father.  He has a full plate.  But late last week he sent me a picture (only after I hinted that I would only believe his “fish tale” with proof). The photograph shows a fish he caught recently while in Alaska. I love this picture, as he is beaming -- and you can tell how happy this has made him.  I think this was his “summer camp.”                                                                                                                                                                      

This made me examine my own keen interests. What am I passionate about?  What makes me smile and feel happy?   The first answer was philanthropy. In fact, we at NCCF are all passionate about charitable giving. 

It’s not enough to have an interest or passion about giving, however. It’s how we use those passions – by combining our passions with our gifts to organizations that protect waterways, or scholarships for students, or summer programs for youth. It’s that combination -- of our interests and what we do with it -- that allows us each to make a difference.

Hope you are enjoying your summer and spending time on those things that bring you joy.

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