During the Camp Shasta decade (1959 to 1970) we went to Las Vegas to bring to life a dream Lenette had about a “Youth Hotel.” Long story, but we made it happen. At the same time we created a company called Youth Systems Unlimited. Name the type youth program and we were committed to its creation, innovation and excellence.
We did government studies, designed, staffed and operated children programs for large apartment developments and national corporations that did the construction building huge apartment complexes. Researched for a variety of corporations children programs and where feasible, designed and operated them. Studied and designed children programs in the country of Fiji, and numerous states in the US including Hawaii.
We were invited to present our ideas about a children’s program in a major hotel to be constructed in Las Vegas. Our competition was two major universities, one on the west coast and the other in New York. After listening to what their goals were I submitted a three page proposal that was titled “Instant Involvement.”
In essence it stated that the children and their parents coming to the hotel from all parts of the world were accustomed to the best care and mentoring and likely had their own swimming pools, tennis courts, horses. In other words entertaining them with games and stuff was wasted on them; that they would tire quickly and be quick to bother their parents or care givers.
We suggested that human connection was the way to attract and keep them interested and occupied. That staff trained to relate on a most personal level was key and activities would flow from establishing close relationships with the child.
Lenette designed the Youth Hotel; we staffed it with up to fifty young college students and teachers and trained and trained and trained. I write this with sincere pride: This program was recognized as the finest example of child care in the world by UNESCO, but it was what we always did. Sy