By Cole Smith, Camp Rainbow Gold Summer Operations Intern —
Hi there! I’m Cole Smith. I had an amazing opportunity working with Camp Rainbow Gold this summer. When I first applied for the Operations Internship, my sole intent was to learn more about the world of business, specifically as a nonprofit organization. This summer, I helped with the review and entering of camper data, and assisted in running some marketing events to spread the word about what Camp Rainbow Gold is all about, along with entering in donations received by generous donors.
I experienced many aspects of the majors I am interested in pursuing. I was able to learn different aspects of QuickBooks to get an insight into the basics of accounting and have been included in the operations side of the company. This will help me on my current path in business administration. I was even lucky enough to start my own project of uploading financial documents into a database. I created a system to organize the files and provide ease of access when searching for past forms.
Camp is a Community
Along with these tasks, I also had the pleasure of meeting some amazing people. Before starting here, I saw a company that hosted a few special summer camps. However, during my internship, I learned that this company was a lot more than a summer camp. Camp Rainbow Gold is a community that is widespread throughout the state of Idaho. The amount of support this company receives is substantial. Getting to know the people like I have, I can see why.
I started my work with Program Director, Tracy Bryan. Tracy is exactly how you would picture someone that works for an organization like this. Her energy and affection radiate throughout the office and are carried well into the campgrounds of Hidden Paradise and spread into the lives of all the kids.
Working with CRG Bookkeeper, Amanda McGinnis has been a blast. Amanda has shown me that the only way to fail is by limiting yourself. She is constantly creating new goals and going above and beyond by learning extra skills to better this company. She has taught me that curiosity and commitment will take you to levels that would not be achievable if you become satisfied.
I also had the chance to work with the Marketing Coordinator, Bethany. She is overflowing with joy and passion for spreading the word of what Camp Rainbow Gold stands for. With Bethany, I was able to experience all the smiles and laughter at community events while getting information out into our community on how they can better the lives of kids.
What I Learned
This has been an incredible summer and an eye opener into the world of business. Not only has this opened the door to the business profession, but it has also shown me the importance and process of helping run a nonprofit organization. The way this type of organization changes lives is something that I would have never imagined without stepping foot into these shoes. Seeing the involvement from the community — whether it be from donations, pinecones collected for campers to use at a Wishcone Ceremony, or hours worked by compassionate volunteers has shown me how important nonprofit organizations are to local businesses and residents.
Overall, I have learned an abundance about the importance of both the projects Camp Rainbow Gold completes and the people that give their lives to change the lives of others. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to work for and learn from the group of people that abundantly inspire the community around them to make the world a better place.