Bio Doves at Camp Amanda

Bio Doves Helium Balloons at BirandoThe Bio Doves are a popular product for use in weddings and other ceremonies. This is because these biodegradeable balloons are dove-shaped and when release with helium inside, give the appearance of real doves flapping their wings and circling the air. Recently, we were able to supply Bio Doves for a more sombre occasion to the families at Camp Amanda, which you can read about below.

All About Amanda the Panda

Camp Amanda was launched with the  mission statement of restoring grieving children and families back to into the mainstream of their lives through innovative services that provide hope and healing. Started in 1980, the team provide grief-stricken families with such services as weekend grief camps, support groups, fun days, school visit and holiday support, so that they can inspire hope and healing after the death of a loved one.

Amanda the Panda offers grievers a full year of free grief support, with their various grief services sprinkled throughout the 365 days. In the beginning, Amanda the Panda’s primary focus was to be a special friend for children living with cancer. She made frequent visits to children in homes, hospitals and schools, and brought a big heart, a listening ear, and lots of warm bear hugs with her.┬áSince then, Amanda the Panda’s work has evolved naturally with more than 32 000 children from 98 of the 99 counties in Iowq having benefitted from Amanda the Panda. Alongside this loving bear, over 600 volunteers now share and participate in this caring work.

Camp Amanda

As a progression of Amanda the Panda’s work, Camp Amanda was launched to be a getaway that allowed grievers to connect with other that had experienced the death of a loved one, while enabling them to learn healthy coping skills and find a safe person to talk to while grieving. Held at Wesley Woods Camp and Retreat Centre in Indianola, Iowa, the Camp offers youth between the ages of six and 18 a variety of activities such as:

  • Tie-die t-shirts
  • Doctor questions-and-answer sessions
  • Games
  • Low-ropes course for teens
  • Candlelight ceremony
  • Small Group Sessions
  • Balloon release
  • Petting zoo for grade school kids

Bio Doves at Camp Amanda

This year at Camp Amanda, the volunteers have every family a Bio Dove that represented their special person who’d died. They wrote messages and wishes on them and the entire camp gathered in a closing circle, before releasing them into the sky. Some doves soared high, while others playfully looped around each other as they raced towards the clouds. A few even got stuck in a tree. The campers laughed as they shook the tree to dislodge the balloons that seemed to want to stick around for more fun. The whole camp cheered as the last one came loose and flew off into the sky. While grieving will naturally inspire tears in those who’ve lost a loved one, it can be those moments of laughter that break through the tears that truly allow us to heal. And since the Bio Doves were able to inspire laughter in the heart of those who’ve suffered a loss, we can state what an honour it has been to have been involved in some small way in the good that all those at Camp Amanda do.

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To learn more about Camp Amanda, watch the video below:

 

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