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Camp Teaches Kids to Be Good Samaritans

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Kids in the program spend time with the elderly
RALEIGH — Some kids never see much of the world outside of their own neighborhoods. That can mean that some children, blessed with the comforts of life, neverexperience what it's like to be poor, sick, or hungry. A Raleigh churchhopes to teach teenagers to appreciate their own blessings by giving tothose less fortunate.

The program is called "Summer in the City," and it's sponsored by WhiteMemorial Presbyterian Church in Raleigh. For one week, middle schoolstudents are immersed in service projects. They learn about others; theylearn about themselves; but most of all, they learn about compassion.

It takes a lot of work to be a good Samaritan. A group of middle schoolstudents are learning the hard way. They're doing yard work at aresidential home for people with AIDS, Packing boxes at the NorthCarolina food bank, and visiting with senior citizens at an adult day carecenter.

Most agree they get much more than they give. Kimberly Daniels learned alot from talking to a woman named Barbara about the beach. Learning iswhat it's all about.

Most of the 50 students spend time in their own neighborhoods. They neversee the more urban parts of Raleigh. The goal of the program is to helpthem expand their world.

Associate Pastor Tom Watkins says most kids go to school shopping near their homes. So when they're asked what goes on in other parts ofthecity, they don't know. "Summer in the City's" goal is to take the kids toareas where they've never been.

And while the kids may not change the world in a week, they may change theway they view the world. Jamie Raub has learned that it's good to helppeople. He says some people aren't as lucky as others.

The church has one more "Summer in the City" session for the end of themonth. They also have a trip planned during which teenagers will doserviceprojects in towns from the coast to the mountains. The program is gettinga lot of good feedback from the community.

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