Each summer, over two hundred men and women arrive at Camp Weequahic to prepare for an incredible experience. Hailing from literally around the world (17 countries and 22 US states at last count), these mostly college aged adults have chosen to spend their summer doing something different differently.
Let me explain….
What we do is pretty simple to explain: we run a residential summer camp for girls and boys ages 7 to 16.
How do we do it? That’s an easy but more involved conversation. The answer involves our structured-choice program for the kids, the way we interview, hire, and train our team, the great traditions and Evening Activities, the Dining Hall experience, what to do on trips off camp, and so much more.
We have a team of eight people who work for 10 months planning a 2 month party and then take another 10 days to get everyone else up to speed. It’s not rocket science but it’s pretty involved.
Why do we do it? Well… that’s the special answer. And, it’s the answer we delve into from the first moment of our 10-day staff orientation. It’s also the answer we finish with the night before the kids arrive. It’s the most important thing to clarify and embrace as it is at the core of everything we do.
What’s the answer, you ask? You’ll have to be a staff member to find out. But, I’ll give you a hint: it has a lot to do with creating an amazing experience for everyone we meet through gratitude, attitude and courage….
Getting Ready for Orientation
Team members should arrive with an ‘open for anything’ type attitude ready to be challenged and engaged. We put our newest team members into odd situations, fun situations, hard situations and everything in between.
We focus on the ‘why’, teach our expectations and policies, practice those in real world situations, and laugh a lot together. We help each staff member ‘sharpen their own saw’ and then work with everyone to create a community that is supportive, friendly, fun, safe, and adventurous.
What we are preparing for?
The kids! (And, frankly, each other!)
We have 450 campers from all over the US and larger world arriving at camp on June 24th. Two thirds will be heading home on July 15th and the next awesome batch of 250 kids arriving on July 17th.
We want our campers to be surrounded by people who will, first off, keep them safe both physically and emotionally and secondly, who are excited to show them how much fun can be enjoyed in our community.
The better a community we create with one another as a team, the better an experience we can provide to our campers, their families back home, and our team at camp.
Sure, it’s fun and it’s usually the most challenging job anyone has ever had. The more we work together and support one another, the easier and more fulfilling it becomes.
Remember when I said our staff arrive ready to do something different differently? Spending your summer caring for, teaching, and leading young people changes our team members. It requires selfless action and that’s not something that gets celebrated a lot any more. That’s why it’s different.
Camp impacts our staff just as much as our kids. It opens up their world, shows them the enormous influence they can provide, and reinforces the notion that happiness comes from serving others.
What does ‘differently’ mean? That’s the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ that we’ll teach you at Weequahic. We can’t wait to show you!
Let me be the first to welcome our Summer Staff of 2017. Travel safely to camp and get ready for AMAZING!