This is the updated list we’ve complied about who is/may be still hiring. Some camps have been added, some positions have been filled. Google is a great friend. If you can find the camp’s site there is usually a ‘contact us’ section that might be helpful. Best of luck.
Tomorrow is wear your camp shirt day hosted by the Canadian Camping Association. Show your love for camp, the friendships it creates, and the memories it forms by wearing yours! As my friend found "Recent research at the University of Waterloo, Ontario, proves that campers benefit physically, socially and emotionally from the camp experience as well as developing a heightened awareness and appreciation of nature." Send your pictures to handsupamazing - I'd love to make a collage of camp love!
I think the answer to this depends heavily on context and experience. Some things to consider:
Do some digging into your staff and organization’s opinions. Are there people on staff with you who already know you’re gay? Will it jeopardize your job? Are you prepared to handle that possibility? Ultimately, some camps have rules about relationships of all natures and that they are ALL supposed to be hidden from campers. If this is the case, it might not be that difficult for you because the topic isn’t discussed*.
What kind of camp you work at/for- some religious camps would not be ok with an out counselor, others might be fine with that honesty. If you work in an area of the country that is a little more open, you might be ok. If you work at a camp that has a history of gay staff you’re probably ok. Even the program can be a factor because some parents could get upset about sharing a cabin/tent/living space with their child.
How you tell people: It might not be the best to just blurt it out at drop off day right off the bat. On the other hand, if you are naturally very open about your sexuality or exhibit personality traits** that might raise questions, honesty might be comforting. If you decide to tell your campers, I would do so in a careful manner and be sure to consider their age.
Answer camper questions honestly to the best of your ability, in a manner that best fits the situation. I think this is always something to strive for as a counselor on ANY topic, not just sexuality. Some of my best conversations have occurred because a staff member or a camper was genuinely interested in my experience. If a camper asks about your sexuality or significant other, think and then speak.
I hope that this helps and I hope that there might be some other people with experience who might provide specifics.
*We all know that things that are considered “off limits” or inappropriate still get discussed and that when they do, it can be very meaningful. I think openness and a focus on what the camper is truly asking is the best method for these conversations.
**I do not condone judgements based on assumptions however, other people make them. Currently there is a lot of turmoil and people feel very strongly about issues of sexuality and as always, stereotypes might play against you.
This is something I’ve been thinking about over the last month or so, how can Camp Confessions be the very best resource possible? I’m honored that so many people have been asking questions lately. Truthfully, the majority have been answered by followers, not myself. I’ve simply been collecting submitted answers and publishing the information. It occurred to me that it might be simpler to cut out the middle man and make some kind of forum.
I have two weeks off in May and I am willing to investigate forum hosting to find the best set up for this community IF THERE IS ENOUGH INTEREST. I think it could be a faster way to share tips and job information instead of submitting through the general tumblr. There are forums out in the interwebz that already exist and function in a similar manner but I’m curious to see if there would be sufficient interest from this specific community to warrant such an expansion. We broke 2000 followers last week and we continue to gain members everyday, not including the non tumblr folks who participate on a regular basis. That’s a lot of experience and a lot of connections that are available.
Let us how you feel about a forum by a) answering this post, b) reblogging with an extended answer, or c) submitting an opinion via ask.
I know of a camp still hiring. YMCA Camp Kitaki in the Lincoln, Nebraska area is still hiring for Aquatics Staff, some Ropes Staff, and Male Counselors for sure. All applications/people are hired as "camp counselors", if anyone is interested in applying.
Job seekers, here’s something for you! Also a few add-ons:
Grace Adventures in Mears, MI is still looking for male counselors and anyone who can play the drums. However, you should know that it’s a christian camp.
Lindley G. Cook 4-H Camp in Branchville, NJ is definitely looking for a Nurse (live-in, EMT qualifications and such) and might have an Outdoor Education counselor position or two open.
We're not allowed to friend campers, and we pretty much try to avoid even telling them our last names. As far as photos, we're allowed to be in photos as long as our photographer/the parents/a camp director is taking the pictures. I think a lot of this has to do with the fact that my camp works with a younger age range (5-12).
At my camp, it’s absolutely forbidden to be friends with campers/CITs on Facebook, which is hard sometimes, because as a young, new staff member, some of my friends I’ve been going to camp with for years are still campers and there’s serious pressure from the admin staff to remove them and not have communication during the offseason. We have to use less public methods if we want to talk.- another anon.
In regards to media policy, my camp doesn’t really have one, but the camp i work at is only for high school students, so the age difference is usually going to be smaller. If a camper friends me, I accept, and I only friend campers if I was close to them or if i know they won’t be a camper the next summer. Many of us were also participants (what we call campers at my camp) with current participants, so its a little different.
We have a pretty strict media policy. Don’t upload photos of campers. Social Networking Sites are more difficult. For high school aged volunteers, we are not to really have “relationships” with them outside of camp. You may add them, but only on a limited status. For campers, discretion is best. Only add older campers. Only add on limited views. Best yet, don’t add them. But It’s up to each staff member. All posts MUST be considered camp appropriate, even if you don’t have friends as campers.
Our camp operates on an honor system — we are allowed to friend campers or let them friend us, but are expected to use extreme discretion and if something is brought to the camp as a concern we lose the privilege. Most of the staff take advantage of the limited profile settings — I personally do not friend campers, but if they find me I accept and put them on limited view. The same goes for pictures, although we are expected to keep those on private if campers are in them.
My camp does have a social media policy as well. The campers and staff both have to sign social media contracts. As a counsellor, we are not allowed to post anything offensive/inappropriate at ANY time of the year, and we can be asked to remove things from our personal sites. We are also not allowed to post any pictures of campers without their consent. We are allowed to add campers to Facebook, but there are warnings about stalking etc because it has happened before.
In response to the social networking question- At the camp I work at, I am not allowed to friend campers on any kind of social networking site, nor am I allowed to post pictures on social networking sites that have campers in them. I can keep in touch with campers through private e-mails, but in that case I just can’t let my bosses know (It’s basically like the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell of keeping in touch with campers)- person b
My old camp just asked we use judgment. If we were to list camp as our employer and have camper friends our profiles had to be 100% camp appropriate (church run camp) As far as being friends w/ campers they allowed it. Almost all of the staff were former campers, so most of us were already friends with campers prior to each summer/ friends outside of camp as well. My new camp has us set up profiles our name with the camps name just for camper friendships- person c
At my camp we are told that if we do accept the request, it is almost like becoming a counselor year round. You are trying to set a good example to these kids. So I personally watch what I post and make use the privacy settings to exclude them from seeing parts of my profile- person d
In reply to the social media question: At my camp, staff are not allowed to friend campers (even CITs), but the camp has it's own facebook page, on which it posts pictures from the week. Parents are encouraged to check it out and tag their kids, but we're not supposed to post pictures of the kids ourselves, since the parents didn't sign a waiver for us like they did the camp.
This goes out to all the counselors out there - Do you let campers friend you on facebook - does your camp have a policy about social media? Opinions
The camps I’ve worked at have all developed policies about these things recently. Last year I was told that putting new pictures up with campers was frowned upon but we didn’t have to take down old picture from past years. Our execs were ok with us putting up other pictures that only had staff so occasionally we would crop campers out of pictures or post things that we did on weekends sans kids.
As far as friending them, that was left up to us. I have my settings to super private and fairly clean photos(thanks to panhel rules) and if I did friend campers I set them on a restricted status. Personally, I only friended a few returners who were closer to CIT status or that I knew would be on staff soon. Some of our staff never friend campers, others are pretty choosy.
This is strangely specific, but I'm wondering if there are any camps that are co-ed with a large number of foreign people that have beachfront on an ocean that anyone knows of? It doesn't matter where, I'm just wondering! IN RESPONSE: Hidden Valley camp in maine. it's on the coast. there's ocean, coed, and there are many foreign people including some from france and new zealand. 15% are international camp goers
I was told at a conference for camping professionals that if you have any interest in pursuing camp as a full time career (yes you can do that!) That you should try to gain experience at a few different camps. It makes you a more flexible staff plus you network more and gain different types of skillsets.
This sounds fairly accurate. I would think that variety between the camps would help to round out an individual. Personally, I’m excited about working at a conference center with a day camp routine instead of the extremely remote sleep-away camp I grew up at. New experiences challenge us and hopefully a new person can bring insight to the table in a give and take relationship.
This is strangely specific, but I'm wondering if there are any camps that are co-ed with a large number of foreign people that have beachfront on an ocean that anyone knows of? It doesn't matter where, I'm just wondering!
Are there? I feel that after connecting with 2000+ campy people someone might know of such a place. Reblog and help out the anon.
what camp do/did you go to? also i noticed when you posted the thing about which camps were hiring URJ Camp George was up there. This will be my last summer there as a camper. i've grown up there and hope this summer will be the absolute best!
Thanks for sharing about Camp George, we love hearing about positive experiences. Your question also gives me an opportunity to brag about our new page: FAQ. Please explore!
I have worked at four different camps, my fifth will be this summer. I learned SO much from so many different people about different areas of my home state and country, different camp environments, and made so many new friends from all over the world. Having a "home" camp is great, but sometimes broadening your horizons is even better. Good luck, be open to change and new things, and "make new friends, but keep the old."
My best advice is to try to get contact info from your boss (or friend who got you the job) for someone who’s well respected at your camp that has a similar job (a counselor if that’s your new position). That way you can ask about special things to bring that are not on your old camp packing lists. Moving from a camp with tents to one with electricity meant that my new sauna-like sleeping arrangements could be combated with a fan. Another life saving tip was the importance of bringing more costumes than regular clothes.
to the follower afraid to switch camps! - Last year I worked at a completely different camp than the one I grew up going to and working at. I was terrified too, but it was the best change ever! Everyone was so amazing and welcoming. They're my second family. Don't be nervous! It will be amazing :)
To the anon that is switching camps, don't be afraid! Last year was my first year at a COMPLETELY new camp from the one I grew up in. Totally different people and totally different camp. I was scared to death when I showed up but everyone was so nice and made me feel like family. I consider this camp my home now because I loved it so much. The magic happens when you get out of your comfort zone. Totally rewarding. :)