Heads Up! Hartford is guided by a board of directors made up of individuals who believe that we are stronger together and are dedicated to the continued success of the organization, including a President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. The Board is responsible for financial oversight and funding of the camp, as well as recruitment of the Operations Committee.
The Operations Committee is responsible for planning and executing the camp itself, in cooperation with the Youth Advisory Board. This board is made up of students from each participating organization. Each of these groups reports to the Board of Directors.
In 2003, the founder of the camp, Denny Moon, and other individuals were contemplating what to name the camp. Denny proposed “Heads Up! Hartford” and all agreed to use it as a temporary working title. The name stuck because of its multiple meanings. It is a phrase of encouragement: “Keep your head up Hartford, you’re doing great.” It is meant to raise awareness: “Look out, Hartford, something fantastic is happening here!” And it is a biblical allusion to the passage: “Lift your heads, O gates! And be lifted up O ancient doors, that the king of glory may come in.” (Psalm 24:7)
This founding committee organized the camp, recruited the participants, and sought funding for the idea. The camp included 70 youth and 18 adults and worked almost exclusively on playground improvement and interaction with the children of Hartford Head Start, sponsored by the Community Renewal Team.
By gathering the youth together and giving them meaningful responsibilities, they developed leadership skills, an appreciation for diversity, and an understanding of the power of giving back to the community. Over time, the founding committee was encouraged to create a more permanent organization. We formed a Board of Directors. Attorneys Patricia Haught and Priya S. Morganstern, Director Nonprofit Pro-Bono Initiative and the Connecticut Urban Legal Initiative at the University of Connecticut School of Law provided pro-bono assistance and helped us apply for the IRS exemption status for non-profits which we received on June 28, 2005.
We are funded by grants from philanthropic foundations, offerings from participating churches, gifts from individuals, and camper registrations. We also receive a number of services and products which are donated by local businesses. We accept donations online and via check.
Adah Dionne, President
Dennis Scarpa, Vice President
Basil Mahoney, Treasurer
Taylor Coon, Secretary
Nolan Dionne, Camp Director
Anna Tansi, Assistant Camp Director
Rev. Linda Spiers
Rev. Denny Moon, Founder
Nolan Dionne, Camp Director
Anna Tansi, Assistant Camp Director & Staff Training Coordinator
Cheryl Turner, Camp Nurse
Gayle Wilcox, Volunteer Coordinator, Youth Advisory Board Advisor & Technical Advisor
Rev. Linda Spiers
Fred Dudley, Church Rep Coordinator, Survey Master & Outreach Coordinator
Patti Cole, Coordinator For Work Sites
Erika Demke, Registration Coordinator
Rev. Rowena Kemp
Rev. Dawn Karlson
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