Resource Library

Whether the current program has your camp bursting at the seams and you're considering expanding, or you're ready to look for another property to host your organization, there comes a time when you find yourself in the real estate market. Buying or selling, there are a lot of things to think about and consider as you make this huge change. This month, we're going to look at just some of the issues and items to help you begin to unravel this often complicated process.

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From Tish
Published Date: 2014-01-01

It’s an exciting time for the American Camp Association (ACA) as we continue to grow and adapt, remaining always relevant, open to new ideas, and responsive. Our organization is no different than other legacy organizations that are confronting a time of many changes during a time of larger nationwide and global change. As we work toward our preferred future, it is important that we have opportunities to connect and learn with one another.

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Camp food service and other directors would benefit exponentially from implementing a "gumption-growing" mantra in their food service operation — the idea that camps can teach gumption (the ability to take initiative) as part of an esteem-building model. This can be a shot of positive thinking for food staff that helps them realize and verbalize their personal abilities and limitations (Howard & Howard, 2014).

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It was seven years ago when I attended my first ACA National Conference in sunny Orlando. Seven years ago when I showed up not even knowing what region/section I belonged to. Seven years since I was the wide-eyed "newbie" who didn't know a soul. Well, I've come a long way since then, and I can say without any doubt that my first conference experience is why I am so involved in ACA today.

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Standards Reminders
Published Date: 2012-05-07
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From Peg
Published Date: 2014-03-01

“We may have come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

When I review ACA’s enrollment and business data (see page 44), I think of this quote by MLK. The ACA camp community is more alike than different — we are in the same boat. Yes, we may have different affiliations and even different tax statuses, but at the end of the day, we share more in common than not.

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As summer begins and all those carefully recruited campers begin to arrive, camp professionals often revisit orientation to assess if they've adequately prepared staff to handle various aspects of camp life. Based on what was presented during last February's Healthy Camp Symposium at the 2011 ACA National Conference, there are several strategies that staff can routinely use to support and maintain the health (wellness) of camper groups.

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Ways to Make Camp Memorable
Published Date:

Building a warm rapport with the campers in your group as well as the coworkers you live and work with day to day is the single most important way to positively impact the camp experience for everyone. Counselors who really get to know their campers will find it easier to motivate them. Campers who trust their counselors tend to follow the rules and guidelines more easily. We all need to be heard and appreciate those who listen. As you discover your counseling style and learn to mesh it with other staff, remember to listen to one another and remain open to ideas.

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There was a day when it was thought that being an American and having "gumption" went hand in hand. As Dennis R. Rader writes in Learning Redefined: Changing the Images that Guide the Process, "America used to be a community alive with the unspoken motto: Gumption Grown Here" (p. 274). What is gumption? Gumption is toughness. Not tough in a stereotypical way (e.g. like suggesting attitudes and actions that are hard, cold, insensitive, or even brutal), but tough meaning emotionally, mentally, and physically f lexible, strong, and resilient.

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