Resource Library

Making Mental Health Matter at Camp
Published Date: 2018-11-01

In 1987, I reported to camp for my first full summer as a counselor. The campers were to arrive only a few days later, but I was confident that I would have no trouble as a staff member with a cabin of six 12-year-old campers. To my dismay, the camp leadership insisted that we attend training sessions during "pre-camp" so we could learn and be more prepared.

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The health center is a critical link in developing and maintaining a safe environment for your campers. However, providing adequate care to an active young population can be challenging. How should your health center be set up to best serve your campers? The following ideas will help you evaluate your health center and determine how you can provide adequate care while teaching campers personal responsibility.

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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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Camp and Spiritual Development
Published Date: 2017-03-01

What are your earliest transcendent memories as a child? For me, they were in the woods or on the trail at camp with my counselors and cabin group. Sitting around the campfire feeling the warmth of friendships and listening to the rhythm of the crickets and bull frogs. Gazing in awe on wondrous wilderness from a lofty mountain peak. These were deeply inspiring and spiritual moments for me as a child, and I have always believed that my leaders and role models at camp were instrumental in helping me discover and understand my own spirituality.

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Camp professionals generate many documents. While some documents aren’t retained very long, others are preserved because they contain critical information. It’s these critical records that deserve attention; do they contain sufficient information presented in an appropriate manner? In other words, how does one “write right”?

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When Staff MESH Impacts Camp
Published Date: 2015-03-01
Everyone has a mental, emotional, social health (MESH) profile. For most of us, our MESH profile is within a “normal” range. Some days are better than others. Some things push our buttons, others don’t. Some days we have a higher tolerance for situations that, on another day, put us on edge. We can be chuckling with mirth in the morning and grumpy by the time supper rolls around. Regardless of our minute-to-minute MESH profile, we typically maintain a fairly predictable profile, one that others come to know as “us” and with which others can effectively interface.
 
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What I Learned in the Woods
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I spent the las t four summers of my life hidden behind a mass of trees and rolling hills. Separated from civilization by mere miles, I entered a world that sent my imagination whirling and my sense of reality to a screeching halt. As I woke every morning to the reminder of hundreds of trees waving and undulating over the expanse of nettles and clovers, I somehow had to convince myself that this place really existed. My heart still owns much of those 200 acres, where even the smell of rotting forest only serves to remind me of what it will become.

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Money Wise: An Interview with Ron Lieber
Published Date: 2018-03-01

"We may not realize it, but children are hyperaware of money,” wrote Ron Lieber in his New York Times bestseller The Opposite of Spoiled: Raising Kids Who Are Grounded, Generous, and Smart about Money. That means money should be an important discussion point in every household, and Lieber, who also writes the “Your Money” column for the New York Times, can tell you that talking to kids about money goes beyond ensuring they understand basic financial behaviors.

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It’s 6:27 a.m. on a sunny Tuesday morning. There you are, comfortably seated at your desk, ready for another great day, when you are called for assistance by a counselor to the health center. Upon arrival to the center, you observe a camper and your health center nurse. Instantly you can sense that something is wrong and there is a situation to deal with. And, that’s when you learn that, for the first time ever, you’ll have to be dealing with the unspeakable — bed bugs.

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Dealing with a Delicate Situation at Camp
Published Date: 2016-07-01

Dear Bob,

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