Why summer camp will be more important than ever before
By Camp America on 05/06/2020
As the world is currently faced with such unimaginable circumstances, it's important to remember this is not forever, and when things start returning to 'normal', summer camps will be needed more than ever before!
Summer camp is a place where people come together, make lasting connections, experience new adventures and learn lifelong lessons. When people think of camp, they think of indulging in s’mores around a fire, enjoying carefree afternoons at the lake, conquering fears on the ropes course, and building genuine friendships through unstoppable smiles, laughter, hugs and high-fives. All of this seems unimaginable in the environment we are currently living in, but all will be more important than ever before, when life is able to return to ‘normal’.
The world is going through a crazy time right now. We’ve been forced to amplify our ability to connect to everyone and everything, through technology and although we’ve adapted well, we have all been deprived of opportunities to connect with people on a personal level. Children and adults alike, are craving opportunities to meet with others outside their homes…craving face to face interactions, warm hugs from friends, and simply the opportunity to get away from the boredom and unusual changes we’re all faced with today.
Luckily, summer camp provides each individual with the things that are missing in day to day lives, especially as we start to ease our way out of this environment we’ve been living in.
Going to camp next summer is going to allow people to flourish in being able to create personal, genuine connections, again. Screen time has and will always be an obstacle in the modern day, but it has played a more substantial part of everyone’s lives most recently. Camp is ultimately the perfect excuse to experience a ‘digital detox’…a daunting thought at first, but one to be thankful for.
At a time where we practically feel naked without our phone in our hand or pocket, camp provides an environment where campers and staff are free from day to day distractions. Without screens, we can’t be influenced by the media to act or look a certain way, and we can’t get caught up in news or gossip. At camp, you are always surrounded by people, which means you are living in the moment and having the most fun. Forget worrying about how many likes your recent post just got, or how many snapchats you’ve received…at camp, you’re spending a summer making a difference, creating memories & lasting friendships, and aiming for victory by winning colour war! Getting away from the outside world and spending time in a summer camp setting is just what the doctor ordered.
Recent news has shown the world becoming united online and in protest, and the great thing is, camps thrive on providing unity, whilst sharing and promoting such important values, on a daily basis. Camp allows you to work together; to accomplish common goals where you’ll continue to identify the importance of acknowledging, accepting and understanding differences in opinions and beliefs, within a safe environment. The common goal at camp is to ‘have the best summer of our lives’ and by providing an environment where no matter who you are, or where you come from, people from all backgrounds come together as one big family and do just that. Ultimately, camp provides and encourages a greater sense of community and appreciation for individual differences, where individuals can thrive and feel a sense of belonging that inspires all to make a positive impact. Camp makes a mark on everyone, but everyone makes their mark on camp, and that’s what’s most important.
Being given the opportunity to spend the summer in the outdoors will also have its positive impact. Nature stimulates the senses and by spending time outdoors, individuals will notice life feeling richer and fuller, movement is encouraged and so, camp will flourish peoples healthy living without it feeling like a chore! Camp plays home to an unimaginable range of activities, so attending camp for whatever duration, allows you to participate in activities of personal interest, whilst also being challenged to grow by stepping out of your comfort zone to try, and achieve, new things.
Most importantly, camp is a safe place. A place where after all this stress, anger and upset in the world, individuals can go and feel ‘free’. It’s fair to say, we can all think back to a time, particularly as a child, where we felt free and had no worries. Right now, we may seem far from it, but luckily at camp, ‘childhood freedom’ is experienced every day (and not just by the campers!). At camp you get to be a reinvention of yourself and because everyone around is doing the same, it’s the most positive, carefree, judgement free environment, that allows you to develop a strong sense of identity, transferable to everyday life.
The best part about it? All of this happens whilst having fun at the same time. So, after a period of time where the world seemed to be turning upside down, camp will be an escape and a reminder that the best things are worth the wait.
Summer camp is more than just a job, or place to have fun, it’s a community. A community that has pulled through this crazy time, and will come out next summer, stronger than ever before.
Here’s to living the next 10 months, for two.