Sending your most precious possession away to camp for a week or a whole summer is can be a difficult decision. The American Camp Association is the best resource to provide insights into the positive benefits you may not have considered in sending your kids to camp. Pali Adventures is an ACA accredited camp and, like the ACA, believe that camp is time-honored, irreplaceable experience in your child's development.
Camp has become a
staple of the summer season. Each year, millions of children, youth, and adults
head to the hills, lakes, valleys, and parks to participate in the time-honored
tradition of camp. And, while most people easily conjure up images of campfires
and canoes, there is a lot more to the camp experience. Here are ten of the
things you may not have known about the camp experience.
10. Camp is older than
dirt, almost literally.Started in 1861, the
camp experience turned an impressive 150 years young in 2011. The secret behind
the longevity? “One hundred and fifty-five years later, there is a camp for
every child,” said Tom Rosenberg, president and chief executive officer for the
American Camp Association® (ACA). “from specialized camps to general,
traditional camps, the essence of the camp experience is stronger than ever.”
9. Camp is worth its
weight in gold, and then some!The camp experience is life-changing – developing
friendships and memories that last well beyond the final campfire. And, there
is a camp for literally every budget. Often camps offer special pricing or
financial assistance, and some camp experiences qualify for tax credits or for
payment with pre-tax dollars. VisitACAcamps.orgfor more information.
8. Green is “zen.”Research shows that first-hand experience with nature,
like those at camp, reduce stress in children and help them better handle
stress in the future. In addition to teaching children how to be good stewards
of the environment, camps are teaching children how to enjoy the world around
them and take a minute to breathe deep and feel the nature, which ultimately
teaches them how to de-stress the natural way.
7. Mommies and Daddies
do it too.Camp is not just for
children and youth. There are family camp experiences, and camps for single
adults, senior adults, and any adult that wants to relax and enjoy all camp has
to offer. Adults benefit from the same sense of community, authentic
relationships, and self-discovery that children do. Camp is an excellent
vacation option, allowing adults to try a variety of new activities in a safe
and fun environment.
6. Try this on for
size!Camp is a great place
to try new activities and hobbies. Afraid of rock walls? According to ACA
research, 74 percent of campers reported that they tried new activities at camp
that they were afraid to do at first. And, those activities often leave lasting
impressions. In the same survey, 63 percent of parents reported that their
child continued new activities from camp after returning home.
5. Manners matter, and
often linger.The camp experience
teaches more than just archery or lanyard making. The entire experience is made
of teachable moments, perhaps one of the biggest is how to live with a group of
people. Campers learn to pick up after themselves, respect each other’s
property, and to say “Please” and “Thank You.”
4. Veggies taste better
with friends.Hollywood and fictional
novels may have given camp food a bad reputation, but in truth, camps are
constantly exploring healthy food options, and often are at the forefront of
things like allergy specific diets, healthy snack options, and vegetarian
meals. According to ACA’s 2011 Emerging Issues survey, 90.7 percent of
responding camps indicated that healthy eating and physical activity was an
important or very important issue.
3. If everyone else
went to camp, maybe there’s something to it!Camp has played an important role in the lives of some of
the most talented people in history. ACA’s family resource site offers a list
of notable campers – including business professionals, celebrities, artists,
and great thinkers.
2. Camp gets those
neurons pumping!Education reform debate
and concern over summer learning loss have pushed academic achievement into the
spotlight. Research shows that participation in intentional programs, like
camp, during summer months helps stem summer learning loss. In addition, camp
provides ample opportunity for developmental growth, which is a precursor to
academic achievement. And, because of the “hands-on” nature of camp, often
children who struggle in traditional education settings do well at camp.
1. Camp builds leaders
for the 21st century and beyond!Independence, resiliency, teamwork, problem-solving
skills, and the ability to relate to other people — these are the skills that
tomorrow’s leaders will need, and the skills camp has been adept at building
for 150 years. “Camp gives children and youth the critical tools they will need
to become successful adults,” said Rosenberg.
For more information on
preparing your child for an independent, fun-filled summer, visit ACA’s family
resource page atACAcamps.org.
Or, follow ACA onFacebookandTwitterfor helpful hints and camp information.
Relations at 765.346.3391 orpr@ACAcamps.orgto interview an ACA
spokesperson or for more information about preparing for camp. For customizable
public service announcements or article reprints, visit our Media Center atwww.ACAcamps.org/media.
The American Camp
Association® (ACA) is a national organization with more than 10,000 individual
members and nearly 3,000 member camps. ACA is committed to collaborating
with those who believe in quality camp and outdoor experiences for children,
youth, and adults. ACA provides advocacy and evidence-based education and
professional development, and is the only national accrediting body for the
organized camp experience. ACA accredits approximately 2,400 diverse
camps nationally. ACA-Accredited® Camps meet up to 300 health and safety
standards. Accreditation provides public evidence of a camp’s commitment
to the health, safety, and overall well-being of both campers and staff.
For more information, visit www.ACAcamps.org.