Along with a $5,000 grant to support camper scholarships, Camp Eden Wood was awarded the 2015 EP Givers Award. The award, won by public votes, gives True Friends – Camp Eden Wood $2,000 in public service advertising with the Eden Prairie News. We talked with Mary Beth, a member of our development team, and Ed Stracke, our President and CEO about the award and our work in the Eden Prairie community:

EP Givers Win Thank YouWhat do you think is True Friends’ biggest contribution to the Eden Prairie community?
Mary Beth: We provide unique, life-changing therapeutic enrichment services for individuals who have few such opportunities, and it’s right in Eden Prairie. Offering ready access to day camps and respite weekends offers a crucial break to families. Camp Eden Wood (CEW) is also a community resource, housing community events, school groups and corporate volunteer opportunities.

What does it mean to True Friends to be recognized for our efforts in the community?
Mary Beth: For many years, we kept hearing from community members that they had no idea CEW was in Eden Prairie! With a significant place in Minnesota’s history and many years’ experience providing unique and beneficial programs for people with disabilities, we want everyone to know who we are and what we do for the community!

What will the advertising dollars do for True Friends?
Mary Beth: The advertising dollars will greatly increase awareness of our services and inform Eden Prairie families of availability of diverse programs and fee assistance.

Do you have any comments on the other nominees and their work?
Ed: Eden Prairie is a great community. I was amazed at how many of the grant recipients here tonight have had interaction or direct partnerships with True Friends and Camp Eden Wood. It’s that collaboration that makes EP such a great community for its citizens.

Anything else to add about the Eden Prairie Community Foundation?
Ed: Since 1994, the EP Community Foundation has provided over $40K to support facilities and programs at Camp Eden Wood and help the EP citizens with a wide range of disabilities and challenges benefit from our life changing experiences. We are thankful for their continued support.