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ESCO Engages Blog


NancySchmugge(1of1).JPGESCO and Camp Fire Columbia Dedicated to Community Engagement


June 12, 2018

by Nancy Schmugge


Camp Fire Columbia.jpg

I recently joined the Board of Directors for Camp Fire Columbia, a youth development organization that aims to build caring, confident youth and future leaders.


In serving as a Camp Fire board member, I recognized that a major part of our culture at ESCO is about supporting the communities where we live and work. We do this as a company through our charitable giving policy and through our team-wide volunteer events, but we also do this individually, through our own personal involvement with nonprofit organizations whose value we see in our own communities and experiences. 

While some of these themes are woven into my role as part of ESCO’s Human Resources team, my experiences both working with my fellow employees and my local community inspired me to find an opportunity to give back in a more concrete way.

SPARK event 3.JPG 

Before joining the board, I was immediately draw n to Camp Fire’s emphasis on inclusion, leadership, and diversity. Camp Fire serves more than 3,000 kids ages 5-18 each year across the Portland metro region. Their mission is to inspire our local youth to find their “spark.” We strive to provide a diverse population with meaningful opportunities centered on academic achievement, equity and cultural responsiveness—and every aspect of our programming reflects that.


To name some examples, Camp Fire provides before- and after-school care in elementary schools, a middle school leadership program and day camp in the West Linn and Portland Public School Districts, as well as summer camp at Camp Namanu. Every day we are giving children the tools they need to make a big impact in the world and it sparks meaningful questions about identity, such as “Who are we?” “Who am I?” and “Who are we in the world?”

SPARK event 2.JPG
 SPARK event photo.JPG

I am grateful not only for the opportunity to serve our greater Portland community through my work with Camp Fire, but also for ESCO’s support. ESCO has committed a $3,000 donation to Camp Fire Columbia, which will contribute toward the organization’s programming for the kids we engage with on a daily basis. Thank you ESCO for all of your support!

​Event photos courtesy of Andie Petkus Photography