Youthfront Financial Realities during COVID-19 Pandemic

We deeply appreciate the prayers and support of our Youthfront friends, families and donors across the country. We want to be transparent about the impact of this pandemic on our ministry’s budget.

Our organization is 77 years old. We own our facilities and we have very little debt, which is a small mortgage on our main office. 

Unfortunately the pandemic hit us at our most financially vulnerable time in our budget cycle. This crisis has caused an extraordinary strain for our ministry, as the majority of our expenses for Camp have already been incurred due to the costs of maintaining our facilities year-round, labor, curriculum, merchandise, products and printing, supplies, and more. All of our spring programs and ministry events, many of which provide off-season revenue, had to be canceled.

Our most significant challenge is the huge shortfall of program revenue that allows us to pay our amazing staff and, of course, our day-to-day operational bills. That has been devastating. We also incurred unexpected repair expenses at Camp LaCygne this year due to record levels of precipitation and a tornadic storm event on May 4. Read more here.

Finally, our staff struggled with the decision of when to open Camp, which is so central to our ministry. Though we knew it would compound our already dire budget situation, we made the difficult decision to delay opening to ensure we could offer the most meaningful experience in the safest way possible. We want to thank the more than 3,000 families who have maintained their registrations awaiting the state’s and our opening plans. 

For those who do need to cancel a registration, a word about refunds: At this time, we’re unable to offer program fee refunds as we normally would. We’re in a situation at this moment in time, where we don’t have the solvency to issue them. This is not who we are as an organization, and it’s painful to have to say that to our families. We hope the situation will change and we appreciate your grace and patience as we weather this unique challenge. We’d ask our Camp families who need to cancel to consider these options:

1. You may transfer your camper’s registration to another week, if you’d prefer to change to another session date.

2. We can issue a credit for a Family Getaway, Family Camp or for Family Fun Day passes to enjoy outdoor offerings including Camp water attractions, fishing, Snack Shop and other activities this summer.

3. We can issue a future program credit for the amount you’ve paid to date to use anytime through August 31, 2021 – at Summer Camp or toward a Missional Journey, Retreat, Family Camp, or other experience or program we offer.

4. We’d ask that you prayerfully consider designating your registration payment as a donation for our ministry programs. Your donation to those causes would enable us to serve those in need. For example, we’ve modified our Something to Eat™ meal packing program so families/households can pack meals under the current guidelines. The meals are in high demand from food banks. Your support will enable us to package meals for the hungry in our community.

5. If you still seek a refund, we will add you to the list of those who are requesting a cash refund. We ask for your grace and patience as we do not yet know what those possibilities will be. As soon as we’re able, we will be in touch regarding refund options and timing. For those in a severe hardship situation for whom this causes an even heavier burden, we have a limited Family Benevolence Fund established by donors to assist those families.

 

 

Thank you to the families who had to change plans or cancel and who were able to convert their fees into a donation to our ministry. We can’t tell you how much that has meant to all of us.

We’re proud of the ministry we’ve been able to continue to offer in this challenging time thanks to your support. So many families have answered the call to pack meals through our Something to Eat™ program, providing thousands of meals to the hungry. Thank you.

Any financial support in this time of drastic budget shortfalls is a true blessing. Donors can support our mission and ministry in this time at www.youthfront.com/donate. 

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