Right now, i have 2 little boys. They are little and don't much to be happy, but I look at them and I think of every little difficult moment of my own youth and freak out a little. I have had a great life, but for every high point, there was that awkward / painful moment. I think as parents we want to protect them from all of that, but its impossible, it all comes up eventually.
With that said, now that I am a dad, I see the face of my kids in the face of every young person that comes through the camp. I just want you to know that if you send your child to our camp, we will look out for them as if they were our own kids.
But for now, in order to better prepare you for sending your kid to camp, here are 10 things parents should know about camp!
Camp Director, 2000 to Present
P.S. I apologize for any grammar and spelling errors. Writing is hard!
So get those kids out there while opportunities are plentiful! This is one of those lines I use on kids all the time to get them thinking about seizing opportunities. Summer camp is a prime example of an opportunity that is only available to you when you are young!
Trust me! Camp is actually one of the safest places on earth for experiencing new things.
Many camps employ staff that came up through the program. They love the place and remember everything past staff did for them. Many of them are sacrificing more lucrative opportunities in order to be at camp for the summer. While nobody is perfect, it takes a special person to want to work at camp. They do want what is best for everybody, even if they are still learning what that might be themselves.
We want to help campers have the best week possible. Sometimes we need kids to speak up and help us help them. Even if we eventually say "No" to a request, we want kids to learn to speak up for themselves!
Parental angst is normal, but its easy to combat! Just take time to learn as much about a camp before you send your kid. If that fails, take some deep breathes, calm yourself, and think clearly about what questions you truly need answered.
Every camp is different and operates in its own way. Many times the camp even has a mission that is special for that camp or that week. Make sure the camp is the right camp for your kid!
If your child has "special needs" or needs special things, let us know about it. The health form is the best tool for informing the camp about what your child needs. We want to deliver the best experience! The health form is important for making that happen! If they are allergic to black beans, we need to know. However, remember what are priorities, not preferences.
Every so often,I get a call from a parent that is seriously missing their kid. That is great, but remember what we tell our homesick kids. "Camp is only 5 days long, it will be over before you know it!" I technically have tons of wisdom that I share with homesick campers, but this is all you need for now. My advice to you is don't call, just keep yourself busy, and when they see you on Friday, its going to be great!