Posted on April 6, 2010 by Mike Stewart

In the summer of 2008, the sudden loss of Dave Stevens was mourned by BC Camping, together with his wife Lea and daughters. Dave had been a long time contributor to the camping and outdoor education movements in BC and nationally through his involvement with the CCA/ACC. While his passing left many in shock, it was responded to immediately by the BCCA with the announcement of the Dave Stevens Memorial Fund.

This fund has been created in a similar fashion to the Lorne Brown Campership Fund, which has been providing funds to BC camps each year since 2003 to send kids with financial constraints to camp. This fund however, was established in the spirit of one of Dave’s loves and passions- technology! The fund began with the collection of donations through the Sasamat Outdoor Centre, the Association of Neighbourhood Houses and Evans Lake Forest Education Society (all former employers of Dave). It was agreed that these funds would be supplemented through a drive by the BCCA until the Fall of 2009. At that point, the BCCA agreed to match all the donations and create a Memorial Fund from which the interest will be annually awarded to a member camp in BC to help develop or improve some aspect of technology in their organization.

The steering committee developing the criteria for this award has used a collaborative process, which brought together diverse camp leaders. Although initially the fund will not render much, we hope that the fund continues to grow. All donations to the fund are eligible to receive a tax receipt and the growth of the fund will only increase the amount available to the camp receiving the award.

Technology was a huge passion of Dave’s. He co-developed the CCA/ACC Roadmap project as part of the CCA/ACC Project Development Fund to allow camps nationally to access relevant information particular to summer camps. He developed various websites for both his summer camps and for the BCCA and he built several databases for BC camps and the Camping Association. Technology is both a necessity and a challenge for summer camps as it has become more needed for registration, advertising and communications while at the same time it does not seem to have a significant ‘home’ in the summer camp experience. Often camps operate on a very small budget and do not have resources to develop new technology for their organization. This fund aims to encourage and support technological development for BC summer camps, while at the same time honouring the spirit of a very significant contributor to the camping movement in BC. In February 2009, Jeff Bradshaw, President of CCA/ACC awarded CCA/ACC’s highest award, the Ron Johnstone Lifetime Achievement Award to Dave Stevens posthumously.

– Hartley Banack, President (BC Camping Association)