The Friends of Camp El-O-Win, a non-profit charity organization, owns and operates Camp El-O-Win for girls 6 - 17 years old who live in the Central Valley. Since the Incorporation in 2004, the goals have remained the same: offer amazing outdoor experiences to the girls of Fresno, Madera, Kings, Tulare and Kern counties; maintain the Camp El-O-Win property; and raise the funds needed to make it happen.
For a decade, the organization has been volunteer run…volunteers who have experienced first-hand and understand the impact that a quality camp experience can make on the life of a girl. And that has been the motivation!
History: In 2004, the Friends of Camp El-O-Win was formed to raise money for the camp, which had owned by the local Girl Scout Council for nearly 50 years. The Friends of Camp El-O-Win operated programs on summer weekends at camp and raised money. In 2007, the organization purchased the camp and began raising funds to replace the 200’ long bridge which spanned Dinkey Creek. In 2014, the bridge was built, restoring access to the entire camp and in 2015, a resident camping program returns to Camp El-O-Win.
Mission Statement: The mission of the Friends of Camp El-O-Win is to preserve El-O-Win and its tradition as a safe place where campers discover their abilities, values and talents in a beautiful mountain setting.
Vision Statement: The Friends of Camp El-O-Win will maintain Camp El-O-Win as a pristine refuge of natural beauty where campers build confidence and character while having adventures that create cherished memories and will remain such for generations to come.
Property: Camp El-O-Win’s 58 acres are located on Dinkey Creek Road about 15 miles from Shaver Lake, which is approximately 65 miles northeast of Fresno, California. The property is in the mountains at 5,500’ elevation and is surrounded by US Forest Service land. Dinkey Creek is about 100’ wide and runs through the camp, dividing it into north and south sides.
Facilities: Camp El-O-Win has a dining hall/kitchen; office building; storage; infirmary; sleeping quarters for the Administrative Staff, program, kitchen and maintenance staff; and shower houses. Campers sleep in cabins, shelters, platform tents or under the stars in one of five sleeping units/areas: Arapaho, Iroquois, Chippewa, Shoshone and Pueblo. All units have tribe names because El-O-Win sits on land that was once home to Native Americans during the summer months.
Program: Camp El-O-Win offers beginning to advanced level, affordable, accessible resident camping experiences for girls and adults which are built on sound principles and totally camper-focused. The goal is to offer a variety of unique and fun outdoor programs built on a natural progression of skills which engage campers in nature exploration, appreciation of the out-of-doors and stewardship of the environment, history of the area; art, crafts, dance, music, dramatics; survival skills, outdoor cooking, health and safety; and adventure activities such as horseback riding, rock climbing, fishing, canoeing, stream swimming, hiking and mountain biking.
The joy of experiencing something new, the obvious health benefit of physical activity and breathing clean mountain air, self-awareness, being part of a team, developing friendships, learning to plan and problem solve and evaluate, developing self-reliance and getting a glimpse of who they may want to grow up to be are a few of the long term benefits and goals for each girl.
Friends of Camp El-O-Win