Camp Fire NJ honors 3 BRHS ‘Spark Champions’
At a fundraising event called “Ignite the Fire,” Camp Fire NJ honored three of its most influential “Spark Champions:” Jodie Glenn, Nell Geiger and Penny Cox. The event, held May 16 at the Ralston Castle in Hopewell, also recognized Camp Fire NJ’s very first Teens in Action group, Bordentown’s own “Teens On Fire.”
Teens On Fire started in 2013 with the vision of 6 young girls and has now grown to be a group of 40 high school students. Teens On Fire provides positive leadership experiences, bullying prevention education, community engagement and peer-to-peer mentoring opportunities. Teens On Fire helps people in the community through service projects and the mentoring of middle school kids, who are their “Sparks.”
Glenn began as a school counselor at Bordentown Regional High School in 2003 and continues to inspire youth during on of the most transitional periods of their lives. Glenn became involved as a school counselor after many years of being a teacher. She wanted to have a broader impact by helping students through their struggles on a more personal basis. In addition to being a school counselor, Glenn was indispensable in the formation of Camp Fire NJ’s Teens On Fire. Glenn now oversees Teens On Fire in addition to running “Bordentown is On Point,” a school-wide program that teaches positive social skills and recognizes students who are engaging in behaviors that improve the school community.
Geiger works as Bordentown’s only Substance Abuse Counselor (SAC). Geiger is currently working towards her Licensed Professional Counseling certification. She has been in the addictions field for over 20 years and is passionate in her work to help adolescents and their families heal from the devastation of the disease of addiction. Geiger works with students throughout the district playing many roles, from crisis situations to giving a cheery high five in the hallway. Geiger founded BFF (Bully Free Friends) and PANDA (Peers Awareness of Nicotine, Drugs and Alcohol), COSA (Children of Substance Abuse) and Lunch Bunch Stress groups at Bordentown Regional High School. Geiger administers the BRAD grant which helps procure the Camp Fire NJ program, Caution Without Fear, at MacFarland Intermediate School.
Cox, one of Camp Fire NJ’s instructors, has been with Camp Fire NJ for the past 15 years. “I am truly amazed by the amount of learning (and fun) that occurs over the six weeks that the instructors share with the children,” Cox said. “My favorite times, though, are when the kids express to me that they are able to handle difficult situations because of the skills that were taught through one of the programs. The confidence and excitement in their eyes says it all.”
With the support of Bordentown’s leaders in education and the surrounding community, Camp Fire NJ is able to continue its mission to provide educational programs that empower children with life tools and social skills to face everyday challenges and thrive.