Campers attend a Spirit-filled week at Camp Bennett

Bennett Campers and The Lady TaylorOn July 14, 2014 more than 50 kids loaded on a bus and headed for Old Town, Florida for a week of camp at Camp Anderson. Many of the campers, ages 12 to 18, were children of employees that work at Bennett International Group, located in McDonough, Georgia.

For these campers, it wasn’t just any camp – It was Camp Bennett. The children attended the camp through donations made by the Taylor Family Foundation, a private, family foundation established in 2012 by Mike and Marcia Taylor that supports and provides grants toward family values, senior citizen care, and community initiatives.

During the fun-filled week, campers participated in a variety of activities including water sports, paintball, archery, tug of war, and more. Worship services were also held each day in the mornings and in the evenings.

William Bloodworth, a staff member at Camp Anderson who is the husband of Cindy Bloodworth, a Bennett employee, said that along with the fun and fellowship, the camp’s staff and volunteers saw many young campers make life-changing decisions the week of Camp Bennett, more than any other week of the year. Overall, 26 campers publicly gave their life to Christ, 31 were baptized, and there were many who rededicated their life to Christ. Out of that total number, 13 campers from Bennett gave their life to Christ, and 11 were baptized.

New this year was The Lady Taylor, a pontoon boat the camp can now use to navigate the waters of the Suwannee River to transport campers to other areas for swimming, water sports, and other recreational activities. The boat was purchased for Camp Anderson with donations made and then matched by the Taylor Family Foundation.

During the week of camp, Bennett campers and volunteers christened the vessel and took part in its maiden voyage up the river. Bloodworth said having the boat is a game changer for the camp.

“The addition of The Lady Taylor has allowed us to expand the camp way beyond our 56 acres,” he said, adding that the boat has opened a whole new dimension to the camp so campers can really engage in the beauty of the Suwannee River and the nearby springs.

Camp Bennett Campers RideBloodworth said the Bennett (Bennett International Group) family and the Taylor Family Foundation has supported this Christian camp from the very beginning, and their involvement and investment has encouraged others to get involved as well.

This was the second year for the company to hold the children’s camp at Camp Anderson. Lynette Mathis, a Taylor Family Foundation board member, said it was an incredible week to spend with some of our employee’s kids.

“We know our employees but we don’t really know their kids, and so it gave us a chance to spend time with them, get to know them, and just love on them and show them how much we care about them,” she said.

The first year they all went as campers, but for the second year, a few went back to camp as leaders in charge of a cabin of campers.

“That was really cool seeing them (the leaders) grow and mature from one year to the next,” Mathis said, adding that it’s just fun to go and interact with kids and see them grow as young adults and have fun while doing it.

Plans are in the works to hold Camp Bennett for a third consecutive year in July 2015.