Caleb

August 3rd, 2017:

Camp UP 2017 was an amazing success! You can read all about my camp experience right here.

June 9th, 2017:

This time next month I will be on the Kfar Silver campus at Ultimate Peace summer camp 2017! This summer could perhaps be the best camp yet, and I am proud to be a part of the LIT leadership. If you haven’t donated already, there is plenty of time and your donation is only a few clicks away. I am very fortunate to say that in the first leg of my fundraising mission I have raised more than half of my total. That being said, more donations are needed to help fund Camp UP 2017. More than ever I see the value of creating an ‘Oasis of Peace’, and could not be more excited to be working with the 2017 staff.

You can support my journey to the Middle East by making a donation at this link.


We love face paint at camp!

I could not be more excited to announce that I will be returning to Camp Ultimate Peace this summer as one of two Lead LITs! I came to Ultimate Peace last summer through my passion for playing ultimate, but unfortunately I have been off the field for the last year with a long term injury. Before UP, this injury would have seriously damaged my identity as a member of the ultimate community, but the meaningful work in the Middle East always reeled me in when I felt most lost.

My 2016 camp team!

To recap, the goal of Camp UP is to “develop understanding, trust, and friendship among Arab, Jewish, and Palestinian youth using the character-based sport of Ultimate (Frisbee) as its tool.” In the Middle East, youth of these three backgrounds rarely have means to interact, but UP uses sportsmanship and Spirit of the Game found in ultimate to break the ice and help campers form meaningful friendships. With tremendous success, meaningful and lifelong friendships are made each year. Building off of my experience last summer, I will be leading the 13 US Leaders in Training.

As a Lead LIT (with Maya Nir), I will be a bridge to campers and staff members for the other US teenagers at camp. Because of their age, US LITs have a unique position at camp which allows them to bond with the Middle Eastern campers and LITs in incredibly meaningful ways. Because of Maya and my experience last summer, we are working every week to make this process easier than it has been in past years. We have a special opportunity to develop the LIT program in this young organization, and we are unbelievably excited to be working together in Ashkelon instead of through weekly skype calls.

Taking in the views of Jerusalem’s Old City

I can not properly put into words how my experience last summer changed my life, other than how time and time again I have fallen back on my UP support system. Whether I need advice on fundraising, or someone to talk to about an article I read, they are the ones I turn to. My day-to-day life has been shaped around maintaining the lifelong friends I made in Ashkelon last summer, and 275 days after Camp 2016 ended the group of LITs continues to grow closer and closer. I can wholeheartedly say that they have become my best friends, and working with them is continually inspiring. The time-consuming planning (and implementing) has never felt like a chore, and that is solely because of the truly amazing people Ultimate Peace attracts. Instead, I get to work and laugh alongside my best friends: American and Middle Eastern.  My life and world-perspective has immensely changed in the past year because of Camp, and the ability returning to the Oasis of Peace again is truly a privilege.

Exploring the West Bank!

I could not have made the journey across the globe last summer without the generous donations which make Ultimate Peace possible. UP is a non-profit organization reliant upon donations of any amount. Leaders in Training are responsible for their own plane ticket as well as a $1,700 fee for being at camp. The money you donate helps me and the campers get to Ashkelon and elevates Camp UP around the world. To cover these expenses I aim to raise $3,000 by July 1st. Any funds that I raise beyond $3,000 will be donated directly to Ultimate Peace.

You can support my journey to the Middle East by clicking here or on the donate button. Any donation of any amount is appreciated and will go a long way!

A video about Camp UP can be found here and is also embedded below. If there are any questions regarding my trip feel free to write them to calebseamon@gmail.com. I would be more than happy to answer them!

Peace in the Air from The Telling Well on Vimeo.

  • Caleb

8/3/16 – Returning a Better Person

Hello All!

Camp Ultimate Peace has ended after months of fundraising, a week with campers, and multiple days spent in transit. I am currently on the flip side of the largest adventure I have ever been on. Sure, I’ve had only 16 years of adventures, but I can’t imagine Camp UP ever leaving the top of my list.

My team. "Oh My Green!"

My team. “Oh My Green!”

As I’m positive has been the case for every administrator, coach, Leader In Training, and staff member the days following the end of camp have been emotional. While each day felt packed and long, the week flew by. Every minute of every day I was immersed in loud cheering at meal time, complex secret handshakes, laughter, meaningful discussions, and the playing of ultimate. Just within my team of twelve campers I witnessed strangers become roommates, teammates, and friends. As a Leader In Training I helped lead my team discussions, cheers, dancing, and drills.The real attachment I felt for my campers became apparent when the buses left to bring the Arab-Israeli, Jewish-Israeli, and West Bank Palestinian campers home.

I feel myself repeating what I have heard countless other coaches and LITs say, but it truly amazed me to see the hugs, tears, and exchanging of contact information that came on the final day. It seemed like every camper was on the lookout for their teammates, coaches, LITs, club leaders, or anyone they had come across throughout the week to sign their shirt/hat. It is a welcomed frenzy, because it is what camp is all about; creating an oasis of peace and friendship.

Seven on the Line

I initially wanted to share an individual moment or story with those who followed my adventure or supported my travels. This moment would embody what Camp UP felt like, and what it meant to me. Using this story I could pass on my unforgettable experience with those who weren’t there. Thirteen hours of flying back to the states with a six hour layover gave me more than enough time to think about which moment I wanted to share with you all. I got nothing. I had no moment which surpassed all others. I continuously ran the week through my head, and constantly I smiled to myself as I thought of proudly standing on my chair at dinner and yelling my team’s cheer. Or when my team, as one, performed a choreographed dance to the entire camp. Or when two girls from different communities hugged and said a tearful goodbye to each other. Again, I got no moment which stood alone as the best or the most representative of my week. And then I realized how that in itself is what made Camp UP 2016 so special.

There have been moments in my life where the only way I could describe the smile on my face was pure and genuine happiness. Until this month all of those moments stuck out individually because such genuine moments occur so occasionally. The same cannot be said for my week at Camp UP. It is hard to separate which genuine moment from another, because such moments bleed together and occured with such frequency. This is why Ultimate Peace is special. Without realizing it every member of camp leaves the other aspects of their own lives at the entrance. What they do bring in is their smile and their dance moves.

UP Camp Photo 2016

So you all can live through my week at camp I have embedded photos and links.

To see the energy during mealtime, spirit circles, the closing ceremonies and more, check out the UP Facebook page for the ‘Daily Videos’.

Thank you again for your support. I cannot put into words the effect which my week at Camp UP has had on my life. I am grateful for all of you for giving me the opportunity to go on this journey.

With appreciation,
Caleb Seamon

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7/11/16 Update

Due to the extreme generosity of 54 donors, I was able to surpass my goal and raise $3,394 for Ultimate Peace! Thank you all so, so much!

 

6/26 Update

Thank you SO much for the $2,199 that has been donated so far! Every last dollar goes so far at Camp Ultimate Peace!

There’s only 5 more days to donate!

Josh and I will be walking around in Jerusalem in less than 10 days!

 

6/5 Update:

I am honored to have received $1,689 in donations so far! I am well on my way of raising $3,000 by July 1st!

spoke this morning about Ultimate Peace at the First Congregational Church of Sunderland. You can make a donation toward’s my work with Ultimate Peace by clicking on the “Donate” button over on the right.

Thank you for all of your support!


5/20 Update:

The first 3 weeks of fundraising for my trip to Camp Ultimate Peace has been a success! With camp starting in less than two months, things are starting to come together. I am in contact with my fellow LITs and planning has begun for camp activities. In addition, generosity from all those who have denoted has brought me to $900 of my $3,000 goal! I am excited about how well it has gone so far, but I need to keep it up. Please continue to spread the word and read about why your donation can help bring peace to the Middle East. The opportunity I have is overwhelmingly exciting, and with your help it will become a reality.


Hello Friends and Family,

As those close to me may know, I am an ultimate player. The sport is a part of me. I have been raised by an ‘ultimate family’ in an ‘ultimate town’ and have had a disc in my hands ever since I was a little kid watching games on the sidelines. The further I have gone into the ultimate community the more I’ve seen of what the sport can do. It brings people together in a way unparalleled by any other sport I have encountered. Without fail at every tournament I have gone to I see friends on other teams that I know from camp or past competitions.

So, when I heard how Camp Ultimate Peace works to make these same connections for young Arab Israeli, Jewish Israeli, and Palestinian players I was immediately intrigued. The goal of Camp UP is to “develop understanding, trust, and friendship among Arab, Jewish, and Palestinian youth using the character-based of Ultimate (Frisbee) as it’s tool.” In the Middle East youth of these three backgrounds rarely have a means to interact. To bring them together, the non-political Camp UP in Ashkelon, Israel uses sportsmanship and Spirit of the Game found in ultimate to break the ice and help campers form meaningful friendships.

My teammates and I after winning the 2016 Paideia Cup!

My teammates and I after winning the 2016 Paideia Cup!

This summer I will become more than only a player of ultimate. As a Leader in Training at Camp UP I will be a teacher, a coach, and friend to the Arab, Jewish, and Palestinian campers. I will assist the coaches of the camp and become a part of the team family I am placed on while also learning how to be a leader in the future. Ultimate frisbee is my passion. I work on ways to improve my game every week and every season and can not wait to further the growth of the sport across the globe. I most look forward to the opportunity to go beyond improving my own skills and improve the game of Ultimate itself this summer at Camp Ultimate Peace.

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Camp Ultimate Peace operates entirely through donations, is driven and worked by volunteers, and is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. Leaders in Training are responsible for their own plane ticket as well as a $1,500 fee for being at camp. The money you donate helps me and the campers get to Ashkelon and elevates Camp UP around the world. To cover these expenses I aim to raise $3,000 by July 1st. Any funds that I raise beyond $3,000 will be donated directly to Ultimate Peace.

You can support my journey to the Middle East by clicking here or on the donate button above. Any donation of any amount is appreciated and will go a long way!

A video about Camp UP can be found here and is also embedded below. If there are any questions regarding my trip feel free to write them to calebseamon@gmail.com. I would be more than happy to answer them!

Peace in the Air from The Telling Well on Vimeo.