Have you heard of the wild Gork? It’s a rare, endangered animal that is half lizard and half monkey and has golden eyes. It is only found in Asia and is hunted for its valuable eyes. Its diet? Poop.
You can also find this rare animal at Flying Horse Farms in Mt. Gilead, Ohio. See, the Gork was made up by a group of special 11 year old boys who are cancer survivors, struggling with sickle cell anemia, or dealing with hemophilia. These boys get to come to camp every summer, free of charge, to be regular kids making poop jokes.
Flying Horse Farms is a magical place nestled into the rolling hills of central Ohio. It was built to give kids who have been handed an extremely tough deck of cards a chance to feel normal.
The camp thinks of every single thing in order to make campers feel at home and never left out due to their illness. If a kid needs to take medicine while he’s fishing, a nurse will run it out to him so he can continue. Even a child in a wheelchair can still complete the zipline and high ropes course.
Through my work at Abercrombie & Fitch I was fortunate enough to spend a week at camp with these nuggets and it was truly life-changing. These kids have been through so much at the young age of 11, and yet they still have such a bright outlook on life. The bonds formed with these children is something I’ll never forget. One even called me his best friend and the “coolest” counselor.
I really felt at home with these kids and fellow counselors and staff at Flying Horse Farms, and it’s something I’ll take with me wherever I go. The week was filled with smiles, laughter, dancing, costumes, and everything that comes with being a kid.
It’s hard to put all of this into words, but I hope that they will strike a chord with some of you reading it. I hope it encourages you to consider coming out to FHF to volunteer, give back, or just share their story. Flying Horse Farms is a part of the large SeriousFun network of camps all around the world (covering kids from 20 countries) and is really amazing. More info on SeriousFun can be found here, and you can check out Flying Horse Farms here