President’s Message – February 2015

With our summer camp season coming so fast, we are excited to have been awarded our 4th consecutive Safety 1st award for 2014. The award is based on our proven safety record and superior commitment to safety.february newsletter

As we are gearing up for Summer Camp, we will be hiring over 40 dedicated staff in the next couple of months.  Jobs include camp coordinators, camp counselors, group leaders, lifeguards, cooks, nurses, and support staff.  If you know anybody who is interested in a summer job, working in an environment where they will have the opportunity to change lives and make a difference in our community, please send them to this link:

Camp K is accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA).  I recently attended the ACA National Conference, hosted this year in New Orleans. Attendees from all parts of the country and from around the world got together to learn, discuss trends, network, and get involved in order to make a difference in their communities by bringing more children, youth and adults to camp. We learned about the ACA’s 20/20 vision: to have 20 million children, youth and adults annually enjoy a camping experience by the year 2020. We learned a lot about the role of camp in children’s lives, we learned how children’s first independent experience outside of the family is most likely at camp. We learned a lot about leadership, social impact, social innovation, social entrepreneurship, and how camps are becoming more and more a social educational environment for children in the high tech environment of today.

The world needs the next generation to be more tolerant of each other’s views, ideology, and beliefs. Summer camp is an opportunity for children to be exposed to the best of human character. Carefully selected role models are dedicated to showing your children how to have fun, learn from others, and make friends in person, rather than online. Camp allows kids to meet people with different abilities, from different places, different races, cultures, and socioeconomic levels. The world is full of excuses. It doesn’t matter where you come from, or what has happened to you. At the end of the day you choose how you treat others. There is something magical about a summer camp experience. Camp is an independent experience that shapes one’s character and life – a controlled, safe environment where children and youth are able to make their own decisions about simple things (what activity they want to do, how many s’mores they want to make, or what clothes they are going to wear) and about important things (who they will hang out with … who will be their friends). Camp is a place where kids interact with people face-to-face, at the same time learn about themselves and others around a camp fire, under the stars, or sitting around a dining hall table. Camp is a place where children find a world filled with possibilities unavailable to them in everyday life, they can go from fantasy to reality. Camp gives kids a chance to practice being the best they can be. They experience a place designed to create happy memories and encourage self-expression. They have the opportunity to climb towers, ride horses, paddle canoes, and even experience success of winning the “survivor” game! It stays with them forever. Kids will learn a full range of emotions and human experiences including homesickness, friendship, disagreements, team work, frustrations, jubilant success and more.

One of Key Note Speakers was Jessica Lahey, a renowned writer, teacher, and speaker.  She told us that, as parents, our hopes and jobs are to ready the kids to be proactive, independent, and capable people – to prepare them to thrive without us. Camp offers a way for kids to start developing those skills in the best possible environment. She also told us that TRUST is very important. If you base your relationship with your children on TRUST, amazing things will happen. Yesterday I was at a training taught by Rick Eigenbrod, a Google executive’s personal coach.  He said that you should base your relationship with your employees on TRUST; he said you have to trust your employees to make all kinds of decisions; this is the only way they will be able to grow. It sounds very similar – the way you should treat your children as a parent should be the way a leader treats his team. Allow them to make decisions, good or bad; it is the only way to grow. If ever there was a time when the world needed a generation of future leaders who understood the intricacies of living in a community, having tolerance and being open – that time is now. Camp is a gift that we can give to our children that they will benefit from and remember forever.
“Together we dream, together we do.”
Mircea Divricean