Resource Library

The Self-Reliant Camp
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Most camps are located in relatively remote areas. So one might expect they'd be designed for self-reliance. They'd run on locally-sourced energy, water, food, and material, and they'd manage their wastes on-site. But few do. Instead, most depend on distant supply lines that stretch over thousands of miles, which makes some sense if:

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AEDs in Camps
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Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs) are portable units used to electrically stimulate the heart during cardiac arrest. In the camp environment, cardiac arrest usually involves older staff, older guests attending during parent visitation days, or spring or fall rental groups. Although cardiac arrest can happen without an outside event or prior health problems, there is usually a contributing cause.

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Technology and camping? Hearing those two words together often sparks ire among camp management. “We don’t allow our kids to use techie toys!” you declare. Of course, unless you run a computer camp, that philosophy holds true. iPhones and tweets (except those of birds) have no place in kids’ lives near the woods, lake, or farm.

But camp owners and staff are discovering that practical technologies and tools can help them fill bunks and buses faster with quality campers, communicate better with staff and parents, and save thousands of dollars and hours each year.

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In the Trenches
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Dear Bob,
 
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I have a friend that works on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Though he is now just an intern, he feels that the work that he does there will eventually catapult him into a position that will allow him to change the world. His days are spent cataloguing important documents, memos that change our nation. To my friend, he is assisting in changing the world, and, in a sense, I agree.

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In 2008, over 20 camp researchers gathered for the American Camp Association (ACA) Research Collaborations Summit where they identified areas of future research, which included this question: How do camps contribute to the development of caring and competent citizens, their communities, and the environment? This question aligns with research from other fields that raises the concern that Americans are less connected to society and each other than in the recent past (Bellah, Madsen, Sullivan, Swidler, & Tipton, 2008; Putnum, 2000).

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Why would the University of Denver require that every graduate business student go to camp? What possible good would derive from forcing predominantly urban dwelling professionals to go off in the mountains to work in teams in outdoor activities?

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Perhaps no issue receives more attention in today’s society than child protection. Since ACA began providing a crisis hotline, calls regarding sexual abuse allegations have dominated requests for information.

Wise camp directors place a strong training emphasis on this topic. Discussions are specific about acceptable and unacceptable behaviors of staff and campers. Camps are using videos, discussions by police or social workers, consultants or psychologists to alert staff to many related topics.

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Camp health is not bound by the four walls of the health center. Nor is safety bound by a list of rules at any given camp activity. Today’s camp professional realizes that all camp staff contribute to and have responsibility for a camp’s health and safety profile; indeed, the camp experience can be considerably healthier when camp staff act sensibly (American Camp Association, 2011; Garst, Erceg, Baird, & Thompson, 2010; Garst, Erceg, & Walton, in press; Papageorgiou, Marvomatis, & Kasta, 2006). Granted, some staff have direct responsibility to care for campers.

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I don't know anyone, within or outside of camp, who isn't looking for ways to improve their cash flow either by cutting costs or growing their income. Operationally, there are lots of places to look for savings, including equipment leases and rentals and service agreements, among others. This is certainly the time to consider slaying the age-old sacred cow of how you've "always done things." People are creatures of habit and are generally reluctant to rock that particular boat since it's worked before.
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E.g., 2020-01-21