- Submit Volunteer Applications by May 31st
- Volunteer Application
About Camp Chance
Camp Chance is a three day program for youth in grades 1st thru 5th that attend school in the Watertown community. There is no cost to the families of the children who attend. Camp Chance provides a valuable program for youth to gain self-confidence, self-esteem, positive peer and adult relationships, and participate in activities.
Each of the three days has its own theme. They include: Healthy Choices Day, Safety and Prevention Day and South Dakota Day.
Healthy Choices Day (Day 1 of each week)
Includes activities such as nutrition education, dental care, team building games, internet safety, seat belt safety, Ultimate Kicks and Humane Society. Activities will take place at the Watertown Police Department.
Safety and Prevention Day (Day 2 of each week)
Includes activities such as Fire Department smoke house/fire safety, bike safety, archery, building duck houses and water activities including jet ski rides, fishing and boat rides. Morning activities will take place at the Watertown Police Department and afternoon activities will take place at Memorial Park.
South Dakota Day (Day 3 of each week)
Includes activities such as zoo tours, environment stations, horseback riding and graduation. Morning activities will take place at Bramble Park Zoo and the afternoon will be spent at Joy Ranch.
Camp Chance Christmas Party
All youth that graduate from Camp Chance are invited to a Christmas Party held at the LATI in December.
How can you help?
Camp Chance is 100% funded by monetary and non-monetary donations and staffed by volunteers. In 2009, a Police Fund was established at the Watertown Community Foundation which is a 501c (3) tax exempt organization. Donations made to the Police Fund will help sustain the Camp Chance program. If you would like to donate to Camp Chance, please send donations to WPD.
"This project, initiated by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington DC, helps soldiers and their family find the help they need through a “one-stop” call center for our veterans – one place that will have a list of all the various official and unofficial support available to help our veterans. A place where they can call with confidence of results, yet know their privacy is honored. We have the resources, we just need to get them to those that need them more effectively. This project will be the catalyst for matching the donor/assistance to the need.
Nationally, we are losing veterans and military members to suicide at an alarming rate. Since the start of the Iraq war, on average we lose a veteran to suicide every 80 minutes. That means we have lost more soldiers to suicide than we have lost on the battlefield in Iraq and Afghanistan combined. In SD, 25% of the homeless are veterans. These are the kind of statistics that need to be heard. We need to address the root causes of these issues – we need to help these families out early to really address these issues. And this is not just about help for veterans, it is about help for spouses, for children, for employers, help for the community.
The Watertown Police Department is the ideal entity to house this project on multiple levels, but most prominent is the situational training police officers have combined with 24/7 availability. Partnership with the Police Department is critical to the success of this project as it will serve as a one-stop shop to match donors to the needs of our veterans, their families, or employers.“
Michael Cartney, Colonel, USAF (retired)
The Watertown Police Department stands ready to serve those who have served us. We have a Military Team in place to address the needs of returning veterans in our community. Corporals Mike Nei and Matt Hegg serve as Co-Team Leaders for the WPD Military Team. For more information about the Sea of Goodwill or the WPD's Military Team, please call (605)882-5620.