At Camp Champions, we have three goals for each of our campers:
These goals might sound familiar to you, and may reflect your own goals for your children. They are also the primary reasons why parents send their children to Champions.
Camp is a place where campers continually reach new achievements. We position campers for success, helping them discover areas in which they can shine. With these accomplishments comes a real sense of independence and self-esteem.
You can expect that your child will be more confident in setting and achieving important goals, taking initiative with responsibilities, and solving problems. You will see these changes once your children return home. The positive effects of camp on youth development can be amazing.
Living in a cabin without electronic devices will advance social skills. Cabin life fosters a strong sense of mutual support, sharing, responsibility, and strong friendships.
Learning to get along with others—by necessity, rather than choice—helps children develop greater empathy. Living with peers whom they might not choose as friends helps children develop tolerance for differences and better coping skills.
As we learn that excess technological usage is associated with feelings of isolation and anxiety, we love providing evidence that tech-free activities and friendships are fun and rewarding. They will bring this knowledge back home with them.
Finally, a few words about “having fun.” Camp is fun, pure and simple. It’s like an extended sleepover at your best friend’s house, chaperoned by his or her really cool older brother or sister. You play all day, try new and exciting things, watch yourself improve in almost everything, and spend time with your friends. What could be better?
On the other hand, you may have noticed that we did not put “fun” first on our list. While it is an essential ingredient in the camp experience, it does not define the Camp experience. There are moments of camp life—some of the most important developmental moments that a child may have—that are simply not that fun. Learning to understand other people’s points of view isn’t always fun. Coming to terms with your fears, and overcoming them, isn’t always fun. Understanding that you are part of a community, and that sometimes you can’t have what you want exactly when you want it, isn’t always fun either.
Each of these experiences, while not fun, represents an incredibly important road to growth and development. Disneyworld is certainly “fun”, but our children don’t really grow as human beings in the Magic Kingdom. We wouldn’t expect them, upon return, to be more capable, responsible and loving people. But we can expect this after they return from camp.