Rock Bridge Lions Club donates $2,300 to help endow Camp Ca-Pow scholarship fund

  • Published: Monday, March 9, 2020

COLUMBIA, Mo. – The Columbia Rock Bridge Lions Club recently donated $2,300 to Camp Ca-Pow, a weeklong program that gives middle school students unique opportunities to explore career options and personal development. The donation puts the fund just a few hundred dollars away from the $10,000 minimum needed to create an endowment for college scholarships.

Camp Ca-Pow (Career Access-Planning Our Way) takes place during the Columbia Public Schools’ spring break. Throughout the week, students visit college campuses, meet professionals in interesting fields and learn how to find the support necessary to achieve their goals.

Once the endowment is established, students who attend Camp Ca-Pow will be eligible in their senior year of high school to apply for a scholarship for postsecondary education.

Sandy McCann, president of the Columbia Rock Bridge Lions Club, sees the value in Camp Ca-Pow. “As Lions, our motto is ‘We Serve.’ We enjoy helping others through service,” McCann said. “Service provides a great feeling where you have a positive impact in your community and the world. Service and having fun is what Lions are all about.”

The scholarship fund was established by Matt Praiswater and Alyssa Roost. They met as college mentors for Camp Ca-Pow and later became engaged. For their wedding in 2017, they decided against a traditional gift registry. Instead, they set up a GoFundMe campaign for a Camp Ca-Pow scholarship fund and asked friends and family members to contribute.

In 2018, another Camp Ca-Pow college mentor, Kassie Rankin, donated the proceeds from her 2018 Boone County Fair market lamb, adding almost $4,300 to the fund.

“The generosity of our college mentors and community presents the opportunity to reach more middle school students, giving them the tools they need to find access to higher education, which allows them pursue a career they really love,” said Rebecca Mott, University of Missouri assistant extension professor and director of Camp Ca-Pow.

Campers begin the week reflecting on their interests and talents, along with results from career inventory surveys. With the help of college-age mentors from MU’s Department of Agricultural Education and Leadership, campers identify areas they are interested in and feel passionate about. Camp Ca-Pow uses the term “spark” to describe these areas. As the week progresses, campers are encouraged to refer back to their sparks while exploring higher education opportunities in the area: University of Missouri, State Technical College of Missouri and Missouri Valley College. At the end of the weeklong camp, campers give presentations on their sparks and career interests to family, friends and community members.

“Watching campers discover and dig deeper into their sparks is so rewarding in itself,” said Emily Blaue, a 2019 Camp Ca-Pow college mentor. “These campers often have so much potential and talent that is uncovered throughout the week that can help them continually excel in their future endeavors. That is something so amazing to recognize as a mentor and individual still discovering sparks of my own.”

Camp Ca-Pow is a program of the MU Family Impact Center. Camp Ca-Pow 2020 is March 23-27. To learn more about Camp Ca-Pow or to contribute to the fund, contact Rebecca Mott at [email protected] or 573-882-1208.

Mizzou Giving Day is a daylong campaign to raise support from alumni and friends. Gifts made from noon Wednesday, March 11, 2020, to noon the following day have a bigger impact. When you support the area you love most about Mizzou, that school, college or program has the opportunity to earn bonus funds.

To donate to the Camp Ca-Pow scholarship fund on Mizzou Giving Day, go to Under “Unit,” choose “MU Extension and Engagement & 4-H.” Under “Other Fund Description,” enter “Camp Ca-Pow scholarship fund.”

Photo available for this release:
Rock Bridge Lions Club members recently donated $2,300 to Camp Ca-Pow to help endow a scholarship fund. Students who attend Camp Ca-Pow will be eligible in their senior year of high school to apply for a scholarship for postsecondary education.

For more information

Rebecca Mott

Use Tab key to loop through the section below. Press Enter or Space to enter content for each tab button. Press Esc key to exit and to go to the next section at any time.

Extension resources