As I write, 50 volunteers are energetically wielding shovels, rakes, and power tools — all with the purpose of revamping Camp Waianae in Hawaii, United States, for the continued use and enjoyment of the community.
Their current assignments: to renovate the amphitheater, plant palms on the new campground space, and put the finishing touches on the new low-ropes course.
Camp Waianae is in the first few phases of a much-needed revitalization — the first of its kind since it was built in the late 1960s. Situated up against the towering peak of Mount Kahala, Camp Waianae exists as a sanctuary for people, particularly our young people, to come and connect and fall in love with Jesus. It is a well-used and greatly loved space in the Hawaii Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, and it is exciting to see so many people coming alongside us to improve our camp.
Since January 2022, Camp Waianae has been given more than 11,500 hours of hard work from varying groups of volunteers. Each group brings their own skills to help with projects such as refurbishing our cafeteria, staining fences, building rock walls and beautiful new gates, building low-ropes elements, clearing land for our new campground, gardening, electrical work — and the list goes on. The tasks are all different and yet equally vital for providing the best place possible for our campers to be blessed.
Camp Waianae is what it is today because of the generosity of people who know the importance of the camp for spiritual growth and community. Where else can young people play games, cool off in the pool, and then praise Jesus and learn of His awesome love for them? Not only that, but Camp Waianae also seeks to serve the homeless community by providing opportunities for homeless kids to attend summer camp for free. Mission groups have also had opportunities to serve within this community, which has been a welcome blessing.
With more work to be done, we look forward to welcoming future volunteers who hear God’s call on their hearts to bless our Hawaiian community by helping us realize our plans — one of which is to build a new bathhouse. To which we always respond with an enthusiastic, “Yes! Please! Amen!”
About Camp Waianae
The Hawaii Conference purchased what is today Camp Waianae in the late 1960s. The camp is located on the more rural side of the island of Oahu. When it began, seven churches came together, each sponsoring the building of a cabin. Later, a pool and basketball court were added. Camp Waianae has been the site of summer camps, camp meetings, Pathfinder and Adventurer camporees, and much more.
“Camp Waianae is a place where you can get away from life’s busy schedule and experience renewal and spiritual revitalization,” camp leaders said.
The camp is available for camping, meetings, and retreats. It offers multiple cabins, a kitchen, a fellowship hall, an outdoor auditorium, a campfire area, and a swimming pool for rent. During Summer Camp, Camp Waianae offers archery, crafts, sports, a ropes course, frisbee golf, long-boarding, archaeology, and other activities.
The original version of this story was posted on the Pacific Union Conference news site.