Hello! I’m Maddy, but at camp I’m known as GiggZ. I got my name because I was and maybe still am known for my excessive amounts of laughter. This year I am the Program Director and that’s amazing but super strange. As I kid I was a camper at Widjiitiwin and looked up to staff and leadership as if they were heroes, but now that I’m here I’m not sure what all the fuss was about.
When I looked back at all the things that got me here to this position the list gets a little lankly. My family first heard about camp about 9 summers ago over the Christian radio station 100.3 and from there my mom signed my brother and I up! I still remember my first day at camp, I wasn’t homesick but I remember thinking ‘where on earth did my parents leave me’. Later I would realize camp would become my home.
My first cabin leaders were Siren and Synchro and they truly made my first week at camp memorable! That first week I also met one of my closest camp friends, Meredith. After that summer Meredith and I were in the same cabin again but by total ‘coincidence’ (all because of God) and ever summer after we went to camp together right up to our first year as staff.
As a camper I did a couple years of Blast, then a summer of Sizzle and then I did the SALT program in 2012. There I learned that ‘hey I’m a bit of a leader’ but I also learned about my weaknesses and strengths. The summer after SALT I applied for a position at camp and was hired for service staff. The summer after that I was a cabin leader and last summer I was a SALT cabin leader. Each summer I’ve learned so much, from my mistakes, and from my successes. Over the years, I have learned so much from different staff members, leadership, and even campers! I truly believe that I wouldn’t be who I am or where I am if it wasn’t for this camp.
During my last year of high school, I was also given the privilege of working for a local church and being there after school program director, there I was given the responsibility of planning, as well as running 3 after-school programs with the support of the church. Looking back, I can see exactly how God was preparing me for these different jobs and I know that God is still along side me pushing me on. I must be confident in my abilities because I know that he has been preparing me and supporting me all long my journey thus far.
And lastly my parents! Shout out to the most amazing and support people ever! They have supported me in my decision to come to camp and they are the ones I turn to and rely on when things go sideways. They inspire me to work hard and to be a better leader everyday. They both have amazing leadership abilities and I know I couldn’t and probably wouldn’t want to be here if it wasn’t for them.
So there you have it, somehow the little shy camper in Robin cabin is now the Program Director.