Our Mission

Providing disaster relief, temporary interim housing for victims of disaster or displacement due to no fault of their own and breaking negative cycles that hinder success through educational opportunities, supportive resources, job, and life skills classes to empower individuals to obtain and maintain financial independence and housing stability.

Our Story: From A Temporary Response to a Permanent Resource

On December 10th, 2021, an EF4 tornado devastated Mayfield, KY, and the surrounding area. The damage inflicted on the property and the people of our community called everyone to action. Micah Seavers, who would become our founder and Board President, with his restaurant Southern Red’s BBQ, family, and an army of volunteers began making meals for survivors, volunteers, utility workers, and emergency responders. With the help of Buck Shelton, who would become our co-founder and Vice President, they began delivering much needed heating supplies and basic needs items to survivors still in their homes. Seavers, in partnership with established youth outdoor education nonprofit Walking Humbly Outdoor Adventures, used their facilities immediately after the tornado, to house families who lost their homes. The families had a roof over their heads, hygiene, and kitchen facilities, but the limitations were evident. There needed to be something better, and Camp Graves was the solution.

Camp Graves began by meeting the immediate needs of one disaster, but through that work, we identified that many of these needs would persist long after our community recovered. With the influx of assistance to aid in the tornado recovery, Camp Graves has taken this temporary opportunity and created a permanent resource.

With our multiple housing facilities, we will continue to house those displaced by disaster or due to no fault of their own. Additionally, at our main site, we will utilize 6 of our smaller housing units for the “Fostering Potential” program. This program is set to begin in summer 2025 and will assist aging out foster children in obtaining and maintaining financial, employment, and housing stability while they navigate the challenges of adulthood and independence. At all of our facilities, supportive services are provided to residents, giving them the opportunity to break negative cycles, gain independence from government entitlements, secure permanent housing, improve their employment situation, take advantage of educational opportunities, become more financially stable, and get connected to resources to meet their unique needs long after moving forward from our program.

When you are in need, it can be frustrating and disheartening to not know where to turn or where to start to find help. Throughout the recovery, we gathered contact and program information from dozens of organizations. From a stack of sticky notes and scribblings in notebooks, we have created our “Community Resource Bank”. This compilation of hundreds of resources can be a starting point for those in need to get connected to the organizations and programs that can meet their need.

Camp Graves is grateful for all those who have given their time, talents, and funds to support us in our initial and ongoing missions to serve our community.

Supporting the Mission

Contact us at info@campgraves.org volunteer by giving of your time and talents in service to our community or to donate materials and supplies.

Monetary donations can be made using the “Donate” link at the top of the page, by mailing a check to 15030 State Route 45 South, Water Valley, KY 42085, or you can contact our office at 270-568-0032 for more information on how you can donate.

 

Meet Our Board Members

These individuals have come together to fulfill the mission of Camp Graves and uphold the integrity, transparency and equality of the organization. Board Members give of their time and talents to serve their community with no monetary compensation. 

Micah Seavers

Board President

When the tornado hit myself and so many others leapt into action to aide those in need how we were able. Once some of the smoke settled we saw a need and opportunity for growth. So, Buck Shelton and I with the help of so many others started a plan to help people take this opportunity to build back better. Taking personal property of mine that already host a non-profit, I expanded the buildable lot to house Camp GRAVES. While housing victims we also want to give them ever chance possible to grow through housing, education, support and resources. Having 5 kids I worry about the education and skills they will enter the world with. Seeing young and old alike that haven’t had that opportunity I want to see them given every opportunity to succeed and become a product of opportunity, not a victim of circumstance.

Buck Shelton

Vice-President

As a lifelong resident of Graves County the devastation of the tornado opened my eyes to the short and long term needs of the people of the county. As a husband and father I felt the need to act. As a board member of Camp GRAVES I am grateful to be a part of and witness to my community rebuilding to a better position than it was before the disaster. With the other board members, volunteers and supporters I feel encouraged about the future of our community and the role Camp GRAVES will continue to play in it.

Sherry Pyatt

Board Secretary

James Blakney

Board Member

I was directly affected by the December 10th tornado as I lost everything I owned while I was at work helping save the lives of others. Micah and his family immediately jumped in and helped my family and I as we tried to recover from its devastation, so when I was given the opportunity to join the board it was an absolute yes. My experience working in law enforcement, a lifelong resident of Graves County and being a direct victim of the December 10th tornado gives me a unique advantage as well as valuable insight I hope to bring to the board and I’m tremendously excited to be able to continuously serve my community.

Camila Montes

Board Treasurer

December 10th 2021 is a day that our Mayfield community will never forget. The devastation that was brought upon our community was immense, yet the constant help and blessings never stopped. Being part of Camp Graves is giving me the opportunity to continue to help all of those that were affected. I’m looking forward to be able to provide services for all of our community including all Hispanics with a language barrier. 
 

Shae Copeland

Board Member

My life’s ambition is to prepare and assist families, neighbors, and communities to be best able to help each other in times of emergency. As President of the South Graves Community Emergency Response Team since 2021 and a Deputy in the Emergency Management of Graves County since Oct. 2022, I bring to the Camp Graves Board a passion for preparedness with the experience and skills to assist the organization in its disaster response here at home and abroad.