Resource Library

Published Date: 2019-01-01

Sexual abuse. Sexual misconduct. Child pornography. Your camp's nightmare.

These events represent the majority of crises we respond to on behalf of summer camps, schools, and youth-centric organizations.

The onset of the event is usually the same. A victim comes forward, rarely right away, but sometimes. They allege a staff member caused harm. Camp leadership expresses surprise and shock. "We did a background check. It was clean." "We trained our staff on boundaries." "They know they are not allowed to be alone with a camper."

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Camp staff beware and be ready! You may have already been warned about your adolescent campers. Wild mood swings and impulsive behaviors will happen, or if you are lucky, you may simply be ignored. Adolescents do not get a free pass to act this way over and over at camp. Yet, the rest of us do need to take a deep breath and consider that these biological changes are perfectly normal and that we are the ones who must adjust our behavior.

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More camps throughout the world are offering inclusive programs such as the one described below. In 1995, twenty-four of twenty-seven YMCA resident camps in Canada routinely included children with physical or mental disabilities as part of their camper constituency. The number of inclusive programs in United States’ camps is increasing as well.

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Lance Ozier, EdD, Interviewer 
Alphonse Litz, executive director and Ayanna Michel-Lord, associate director, Boston Explorers, Boston, Massachusetts (
Lorilee Chien, LIT and college and career access coordinator, Project Morry, Elmsford, New York (

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I Am. Therefore, I Think
Published Date: 2003-07-01

"Pooh," said Rabbit kindly, "you haven't any brain." "I know," said Pooh humbly.
— from The House at Pooh Corner by A. A. Milne

Big Questions

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Scared or Prepared?
Published Date: 2015-01-01

For campers to have a successful experience we must prepare them for the unknown, build their confidence, and give them the tools needed to succeed in our camp's environment. As camps will always have new participants entering at some level, there is a great benefit in implementing a camper preparedness program to ensure campers and staff are prepared to attend as participants and employees.

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To camp professionals, camp enrollment trends serve as an important indicator of the overall health of the industry, and are particularly important in uncertain economic times. Every year, day and resident camps from around the US are invited to complete the American Camp Association (ACA) online enrollment survey in the spring as a "preview" of the coming summer and again in the fall to provide an accurate read on enrollment and staffing trends.
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Generating Your Backup Plan
Published Date: 2018-03-01

Most people recognize that generators come in different “sizes” and understand that bigger “things” require bigger generators. After that, though, eyes glaze when the discussion turns into techno-babble about kilowatts, horsepower, amps, and loads. Unlike many inconsequential topics, however, these things do matter when you’re thinking about backup power for even part of camp. Simply put, the size of the generator should be determined by the amount of power you want it to deliver.

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Evaluating a Good Season
Published Date: 2003-09-01

Several months after the ending of the 2002 camp season, a concerned camp director contacted me. As the director of a small nonprofit camp, he had received a bit of critical feedback from the board of directors on his general performance. The director was angry and thought that this was more of a personal attack rather than having anything to do with his actual performance. Through questioning, it became apparent that this man was intelligent and quite knowledgeable about the camp industry.

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