Resource Library

“Better Camping for All.” It’s not just a long-time slogan of members of the American Camp Association; it’s a call to action. As we strive to embody this phrase and create excellence in programming, we are inspired by those who take an innovative approach to bring this phrase to life.

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What's stopping your camp from improving its existing programs or introducing new ones? At the same time, what's standing between your organization and "going green?" Each to its own extent, cost, culture, and commitment drive the decisions that shape camp whether you're considering programs, facilities, administration, or being greener. This month we're going to see that camps can tackle green initiatives the very same way that they've overcome program obstacles for years and years and years.

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From Peter
Published Date: 2010-01-01

Because of Camp . . .™ — there are millions of powerful answers to this leading statement. We know that all participants — campers, counselors, supervisors, owners, and directors are changed by each camp experience. Even the most reluctant and unenthusiastic campers grow from the experience. Participants who "jump in feet first" gain even more, returning home with the ability to create stronger human relationships (they are more able to meet new people, speak their minds, and negotiate).

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Notes from the 2013 Insurance Roundtable
Published Date: 2013-05-01

Each year during the ACA national conference, the National Insurance Committee hosts a roundtable discussion with our insurance business partners and other insurers of camps. At the roundtable, trends in the insurance industry that may impact camp operations, what types of claims were filed the year before, and risk management issues are discussed. This year’s roundtable discussion, as the ones in the past, has proven to be an excellent source for risk management issues we as camp professionals cannot afford to ignore.

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Beneath Amy Chua’s personal struggle in Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother lies a deeper ambivalence about learning: What on earth should we do with our children outside of school, during unstructured free time? Chua is at times conflicted but wryly proud of her intense, authoritarian solution, a luxury reserved for high-achieving, high-functioning parents. At the end of this best-seller, I felt rattled by Chua’s belief that education happens only in connection to school or homemade settings that are rigorously academic.

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Risk management is one of those areas where we never really “arrive” and have it all together. We learn new things. We hear of challenges faced by other camps. We experience a tragedy such as 9/11 and begin to ask ourselves questions about potential crises at camp . . . and we should!

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I was born a camp brat. From the age of six years old, I had no choice but to live the camp life as my mother began her career in camp administration. My early camp years were spent causing headaches to the staff as a child, wanting to be a staff member as a teen, and becoming a staff member as a young adult. These years cemented my love for camp and everything it stood for at a very young age.

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A Platform for Growth
Published Date:

Day camps. Resident camps. Camps for girls only. Camps for boys only. Burn-victim camps. Camps for kids with cancer. Camps for kids who want to lose weight. Faith-based camps. Activity- or sports-specific camps. For-profit camps. Nonprofit camps. Truth be known, the list of different types of camps is virtually endless.

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Over the past few years, the scope of crisis response plans for many camp programs has expanded as camps share specific crisis experiences and network with other industries, such as schools and law enforcement agencies, to find solutions. In the past, crisis response plans at camps focused on child abuse; drownings or other activity-related deaths; vehicle wrecks; and environmental disasters such as earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, or fires.

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I just got off the phone with the very thoughtful and reflective Jamie Cole, one of the owner/directors of Camp Robin Hood in Freedom, New Hampshire. She wanted to know my thoughts about a new policy the camp has been considering for this summer regarding the use of electronics at camp. I say the “thoughtful and reflective” Jamie Cole because she is balanced in her thinking about the issue of electronics at camp.

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E.g., 2019-10-21
E.g., 2019-10-21