Great things happen when youth and mountains meet . . . and when they meet at camp something extraordinary happens. For nearly 150 years, camp has been part of the hearts and minds of children and parents. The camp experience has provided important steps toward the milestones of many young lives — creating and fostering the artist, the musician, the articulate business person, the inspired politician, the actor, the scientist, or the visionary who lives in each child's heart.
Every child's camp experience is part of the story of their lives. Camp is about firsts — a first campfire outdoors, a first time leading a pony, catching a frog, or enjoying evening stories — and being chosen to be part of a community that values each child and his or her special gifts. It's about making memories, honoring traditions, and being a part of something bigger.
According to the American Camp Association® (ACA), some of the benefits and anticipated outcomes of the camp experience include social skills development, self-respect and character building, and community living and service skills. An ACA study also indicates that parents, camp staff, and children reported significant growth in areas such as independence, leadership, friendship skills, environmental awareness, values, and decision-making abilities.
"Camp is an equal opportunity life-changer," said Peg Smith, ACA's CEO. "Camps have the opportunity to help all children — the gifted athlete, the budding musician, the curious naturalist, the first-time camper, and the child with a disability — feel successful. The idea that camp is for every child isn't just a nice thought — it's a reality."
It's never too late for families to find the perfect camp experience. ACA's family resource site, www.CampParents.org , offers expert advice and information on planning the perfect camp experience. In addition, ACA's "Find a Camp" database allows families to search for camps based on location, programming, session length, cost, and more.
Contact Public Relations at 765.349.3317 or pr@ACAcamps.org  to interview an ACA spokesperson or for more information about the camp experience. For customizable public service announcements or article reprints, visit our Media Center at www.ACAcamps.org/media_center/ .
The American Camp Association® (ACA) works to preserve, promote, and enhance the camp experience for children and adults. ACA-Accredited® camp programs ensure that children are provided with a diversity of educational and developmentally challenging learning opportunities. There are over 2,400 ACA-accredited camps that meet up to 300 health and safety standards. For more information, visit www.ACAcamps.org .