Onslow County summer camp teaches kids to give back

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ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WNCT) — Gifted and talented Onslow County students are taking part in a cognitive convention camp this week. And they’re learning about new ways to give back to their community at the same time.

Camp Cogni-Con is a week long free summer camp for gifted and talented students in Onslow County. The camp focuses on teaching hands-on skills to help these students give back to their community.

Middle school students like Julie Messer work on activities all week that can benefit others.

“We’re working on making lending libraries in another class,” said Messer, “so that people who don’t have books can read them. Earlier this week we made pans of marshmallows and we cut them up and we sent them to a nursing home.”

Teacher Lisa Mixon said the camp teaches kids in a way that a typical classroom setting couldn’t.

“We want them to see,” said Mixon, “that what they do now impacts their future. And that they have amazing abilities. And this camp has just taught me that I learn from them every single day. From the abilities that they have and their ideas. And that they can dream and have hope for their future.”

And the kids recognize how important it is to give back.

Middle school student Kai Hercula said “people who aren’t as better off as us, we can help them.”

And they have fun while doing it.

“I had a really good time here,” said Hercula.

At the end of the week, all of the projects the kids have been working on will be delivered to the community.

When the camp started three years ago, it was just 25 kids. Now it’s more than 130 kids all working to give back.

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