Many years ago I wrote something that I called the "Camp Counsellor's Manifesto". You can find it at my personal website - www.yoyojoe.com where you can download a poster version. Camp also has a different poster verison for sale in our office that has the Pearce Williams Covered Wagons in the picture as well.
It recently came to our attention that this made it to the popular board on Pinterest. It has been published in many newspapers across the country and around the world. It is on the wall in many summer camp staff lounges. It is very humbling to have it be so popular...
This really gets to why I do what I do. To what motivates me to be the best camp director and to pass on knowledge to other to understand the power of camp. Camp changed my life, camp is my life, this is my manifesto.
I am a summer camp counsellor.
I believe in camp.
I believe in shorts, t-shirts and sandals.
I believe in singing at the table.
I believe everyone should know five games to play on a bus.
I believe in early morning dip (even if I don't always go).
I believe that if you play with children you will stay childlike.
I believe that camp makes a difference in every camper's life, as well as my own.
Camp is a place that I can get away from the rush of everyday life and back to the basics.
I come to camp for the campers, but also for myself.
Every camper is an individual and I need to treat them as such.
One method does not work with all campers.
I will strive to find the balance that will help me to see each camper as an individual
And help me to give them each the summer of their lives.
I will remember my favorite counsellors and teachers.
By remembering I draw on the positives of these people to make myself into a better counsellor.
I am the most important person at camp to my campers.
My campers will watch everything that I do and say this summer
So I want to do what is right and say what is good.
Camper see, camper do.
I need help and I will not be afraid to ask for it.
The staff want to see me succeed and will help me to do so, but only if I ask.
Camp is camp because of the people that are there.
I believe that every child should have an opportunity to attend camp at some point in their lives.
Camp is good, no camp is great - in fact, I believe camp is the best place to be.
I believe this is going to be the best summer yet.
written by joe richards