By RODNEY D. BOAM
LOGAN – Katie Smith, of Dayton, is the director and founder of “Retreat for Girls,” a week-long camp for young women ages 12 to 15.
The girls stay in campus dorms and go to workshops, activities and listen to speakers. Although the camp is for all girls, it is based on the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints’ values.
The Smithfield native said when she was younger she attended a similar program for girls on Brigham Young University’s campus and later became a counselor in that program.
After she married Jeremy Smith and moved to Dayton, she observed some of the challenges girls in her area were facing.
She contacted the people at Utah State University, who handle their continuing education and conferences, about starting a program for young teen girls there. Smith knew the system well at the Logan school — she was involved in student leadership at Utah State University, taught high school after graduation and some teaching at Utah State University.
When they first started “Retreat for Girls,” they had about 40 participants and it lasted a week.
Fast forward eight years and “Retreat for Girls” has grown to about 400 and is split into two, one-week sessions.
“I like to keep the groups small so they are easier to handle,” Smith said.
“We have college-age counselors who oversee groups of 12 girls. We’ve had girls come from every state in the country and some from Australia, Italy, Japan, Egypt and most of the provinces of Canada,” Smith said.
“This has surpassed all my expectations.”
This story is sponsored by FCMC Okie Dokie Corral.
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