“A Very Merry Christmas Pop-up Shop” at Roscoe Middle School benefits pediatric burn camp

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Charlotte and her mother Kayla sampled some Frosted Bite Candy at the Very Merry Pop-Up Shop, December 2, 2023

Roscoe Middle School, 6121 Elevator Road in Roscoe, was the site of “A Very Merry Christmas Pop-up Shop” on Saturday, December 2, 2023.

The holiday event was a combination of local craftsmanship, community spirit and philanthropy.

Over thirty small businesses set up booths in the school gymnasium selling unique gifts, handmade items and food. Many Christmas-themed items drew early Christmas shoppers.

Laurie Zapeda welcomes shoppers to try her homemade Cali Sas Chamoy sauce during the Very Merry Pop-Up Shop at Roscoe Middle School, December 2, 2023

The event was also about supporting a very worthy cause: “Camp I Am Me,” a pediatric burn survivor summer camp which is held at YMCA Camp Duncan in Ingleside, IL.

Roscoe resident Stacy Moore coordinated the fundraising event. She has first person awareness of the camp. At the age of six, Moore suffered extensive and severe burns. The experience has led her to volunteer for the burn survivor program. She helps with fundraising events and bringing awareness of the one-week camp to parents, children and teens who have experienced injuries from burns.

The Illinois Safety Alliance (IFSA) started the program in 1991, to provide a non-judgmental, safe environment to have fun and enjoy a camp experience. Camp activities include archery, board games, campfires, boating, crafts, fishing, indoor and outdoor swimming, horseback riding, music, dance, woodworking sports, rock climbing, talent shows and more. All programs are offered to help deal with the specific needs of a young burn survivor.

“Camp I Am Me” is free and is open to children of Illinois between the ages of 8 and 16, who have experienced a burn injury requiring outpatient treatment or hospitalization. Enrollment is subject to medical approval.

The camp is staffed by volunteers, many doctors, nurses, social workers, physical and occupational therapists, fire service personnel, teachers and other professionals. The highly dedicated group of volunteers results in a nearly 1:1 counselor-to-camper ratio. The camp is accredited by the American Camp Association.

Camp information, including dates, can be found at the Illinois Fire Safety Alliance website.

To register a camper or for more information about the program, call (847) 390-0911, email [email protected] or visit www.IFSA.org.

Tracy Porter, owner of Mama Bear Dog Treats and Balms was one of over 30 small businesses taking part in the Very Merry Christmas Pop-Up Shop on December 2, 2023. The fundraising venture benefited Camp "I Am Me," a pediatric summer camp for severe burn survivors in Illinois. Stacy Moore coordinated the Christmas event. Moore is a burn survivor herself, and a volunteer at the summer camp.
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