We Believe That . . .
- Camp professionals care about the successful development of children.
- Camp is for everyone – all interests, ages, abilities, budgets, and personal schedules.
- Camp offers a supervised, positive environment in the outdoors where kids can laugh and grow within a set of controlled boundaries.
- Camp is more than a place, it is an experience that gives kids a world of good.
- Camp experiences provide opportunities to develop key life skills: responsibility, cooperation, courage, and self-esteem.
The American Camping Association is a community of camp professionals and is dedicated to enriching the lives of children and adults through the camp experience.
Purpose of the Accreditation Program
The primary purpose of the ACA-accreditation program is to educate camp owners and directors in the administration of key aspects of camp operation, particularly those related to program quality and the health and safety of campers and staff. ACA standards establish guidelines for needed policies, procedures, and practices. The camp, then, is responsible for ongoing implementation of these policies.
The second purpose of ACA accreditation is to assist the public in selecting camps that meet industry-accepted and government-recognized standards. ACA's Camp Database provides the public with eleven separate ways to search for the ideal ACA-accredited camp.
- Tell Me More — helpful information for prospective camps, parents, media (PDF)
- What support tools and services are available to help beginners?
- What's in it for me? What are the benefits for accredited camps?
- Is accreditation right for my program? Are we eligible?
- What does being ACA-Accredited mean? To me and my staff? Public? Supervisor/board chair? Funding agency?
- How much does accreditation cost?
- What areas of my operation are covered?
- How long does accreditation last? An on-site visit occurs every three to five years. Accreditation is approved on an annual basis by the local leadership based on continued compliance as evidenced by completion of the Annual Accreditation Report, a signed Annual Statement of Compliance, and current fees.
- The Standards at a Glance
- Find out about the camp-related regulations in your state.