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  • 5 Reasons Why Your Child Will Love Pearce Williams Overnight Summer Camp

    Summer is almost here! Looking for an awesome summer experience for your child? Pearce Williams overnight summer camp is the place to be! We have programs for all ages from 5 to 15 years old. Our Christian camp environment is a safe space for kids to learn and grow. Here are five reasons why your child will love Pearce Williams (PW) Summer Camp: 1. Make New Friends and Have Fun: At PW camp, kids make new friends and have tons of fun. They can go hiking, swimming, play sports, and more. Every day is a new adventure! 2. Learn Cool Skills: Kids get to learn new things like building a campfire or shooting arrows in archery. PW helps them discover new talents and feel more confident. 3. Grow More Independent: Being away from home helps kids become more independent. They learn to make decisions, solve problems, and take care of themselves in a safe and supportive environment. 4. Friendly and Caring Staff: PW counsellors are friendly and trained to take great care of every camper. With lots of staff around, your child gets the attention and help they need. 5. Lots of Excitement and Adventure: From campfire sing-alongs to exciting activities, there’s never a dull moment. Our camp is all about fun and adventure, making every day special. Give your child a summer they’ll never forget. Visit or contact us at 519-764-2317 or to learn more and sign up today! Tell them Joe sent you. Dreaming of camp, Joe Richards, Executive Director & Guitar Guy

  • Choosing a Summer Camp - Why Pearce Williams Summer Camp is the Perfect Choice for Your Child This Summer!

    As you explore summer camp options for your children, consider the unique experiences that Pearce Williams Summer Camp offers. Here’s why Pearce Williams stands out as an exceptional choice: 1. Diverse Activities Tailored for All Interests At Pearce Williams (visit our site at, your child will thrive in an environment that offers a wide range of activities. From swimming and hiking to creative arts and sports, Pearce Williams provides a well-rounded experience that caters to every child’s interests and passions. This diversity ensures that every day is full of new and exciting adventures that engage and inspire. Traditional Camp activities as well as amazing sessions that our counsellors create from their own hobbies and passions - different each week. 2. Programs for Every Age Group Understanding that children of different ages have varying needs and interests, Pearce Williams designs its programs to be age-appropriate and fulfilling. Whether your child is a first-time camper or a seasoned adventurer, they will find programs that are perfectly suited to their age and developmental stage, making their summer both fun and enriching. We have camps for children and youth aged 5 to 15 3. Committed to Safety Your child’s safety is the top priority at Pearce Williams. With experienced, caring staff and a strong commitment to best safety practices, you can rest assured that your child is in good hands. The camp’s robust safety protocols and professional staff ensure a secure environment where your child can freely enjoy their summer activities. Pearce Williams follows the standards of the Ontario Camps Association - we have been members since 1993! 4. Affordable and Worthwhile Investment Pearce Williams offers competitive pricing, a parents choice of what to pay, and flexible sessions to ensure that summer camp is accessible and affordable. Investing in this summer camp experience means investing in your child’s personal growth, happiness, and lifelong memories, making it a worthwhile expenditure. $565 per week is our affordable pricing for week long camps - can't afford that - reach out to see if there are scholarship funds still available. 5. Simple Registration Process Signing up for Pearce Williams is straightforward and hassle-free. Their user-friendly registration process ensures that securing a spot for your child is just a few clicks away. Sign up today to guarantee your child’s place in their summer adventure. Still space available for this summer. Join over 300 other families who trust Pearce Williams. Choosing Pearce Williams means giving your child a summer filled with growth, joy, and adventure. We are more than just a place to be during the summer—it's a community where your child will develop new skills, forge lasting friendships, and build confidence. Visit Pearce Williams Summer Camp today to learn more and secure a spot for a summer your child will never forget. Joe Richards, Executive Director & Guitar Guy.

  • Kickstart Your Summer: A Guide to Becoming a Camp Counselor at Traditional Overnight Camps in Ontario

    Are you a student between the ages of 16 and 21 looking to make your summers more impactful while developing valuable leadership skills? Becoming a camp counselor at a traditional overnight summer camp in Ontario, such as Pearce Williams Summer Camp, could be your perfect opportunity. Step 1: Understand the Role First, understand what being a camp counselor involves. Counselors are not just supervisors; they are role models, friends, and educators. At a camp like Pearce Williams, which typically runs one-week programs with weekends off, you'll engage children in activities, ensure their safety, and foster a fun and inclusive environment. Step 2: Check the Requirements Most camps, including Pearce Williams Summer Camp (learn more at, look for energetic, responsible, and caring individuals. While previous experience as a counselor isn't necessary, having a background in working with children, whether through babysitting, tutoring, or volunteering, is a plus. The camp website will often have the requirements and an online application. You can also look for camps and camp jobs at the Ontario Camps Association or by looking at the Ontario Job Bank or the Canada Job Bank Step 3: Gain Relevant Skills Enhance your resume by gaining skills relevant to camp counseling. First aid and CPR certifications are often required. Additionally, skills in sports, arts, and outdoor activities can boost your application. Leadership workshops and courses in child psychology or education can also give you an edge. Step 4: Apply to Camps Start your application process early, as positions fill up quickly. Tailor your resume and cover letter to highlight your experience with children and any special skills or certifications. Make sure to express why you’re passionate about working at an overnight summer camp. It is never too late to try and apply as many camps are looking for various positions right up to the beginning of the summer. Step 5: Prepare for the Interview If your application catches an eye, you’ll likely be called for an interview. Prepare by thinking of examples that demonstrate your leadership, problem-solving skills, and ability to handle responsibility. Be ready to discuss how you would manage various camp scenarios. Step 6: Continuous Learning Once hired, continue learning and adapting. Be ready to learn. Each camp season is different, and being open to feedback and new experiences will help you grow as a counselor. Becoming a camp counselor is not just a summer job; it’s an opportunity to create lasting memories and develop skills that will benefit you throughout your life. Whether at Pearce Williams or another wonderful camp in Ontario, your journey as a camp counselor is sure to be enriching and exciting. Joe Richards, Executive Director & Guitar Guy

  • Beyond the Campfire: How Summer Camps Shape the Futures of Young Adults or Why You Should Hire Previous Camp Counsellors to Have Your Business Thrive

    As the summer sun sets on another day filled with laughter, teamwork, and adventure, a group of young camp counsellors gathers around a dwindling campfire. These young people are not just teenagers; they are teachers, leaders, and role models, soaking in invaluable life lessons from their experience at summer camp. For 16 to 19-year-olds, working at a summer camp offers more than a fun seasonal job; it's a crucible that forges skills and experiences with lifelong benefits. Developing Leadership and Teamwork At the heart of the summer camp experience is the opportunity to lead. Teen counsellors are thrust into leadership roles, responsible for planning activities, resolving conflicts, and ensuring the safety of younger campers. This hands-on leadership experience is invaluable, instilling confidence and poise in high-pressure situations. Moreover, camps are collaborative environments. Counsellors must work together to execute plans and handle the unexpected, which fosters strong teamwork skills. Learning to rely on and support others builds a sense of community and interdependence, traits that are vital in both personal and professional contexts. Enhancing Communication Skills Effective communication is crucial at camp, where counsellors must convey instructions, provide feedback, and share important safety information with campers and staff. They learn to adapt their communication styles to diverse audiences, ensuring they are understood by campers of various ages and backgrounds. These skills translate directly into more effective communication in school, future workplaces, and within their personal lives, making them better listeners, speakers, and collaborators. Cultivating Responsibility and Problem-Solving Abilities Being a camp counsellor often means being on the front line of both routine and unexpected challenges. From addressing camper who miss home to responding to weather disruptions, counsellors learn to think quickly and act responsibly. This heightened sense of responsibility and enhanced problem-solving ability prepares them for handling complex issues, with the agility to pivot and adapt as situations change. Fostering Empathy and Inclusivity Working closely with campers from varied backgrounds promotes a deep sense of empathy and understanding. Counsellors learn to recognize and appreciate individual differences, fostering an inclusive environment where all campers feel valued and understood. These experiences in nurturing inclusivity are crucial in an increasingly interconnected world. Building Resilience and Personal Growth The daily life of a camp counsellor is not without its stresses and strains. However, through these challenges, young counsellors learn resilience. Overcoming the difficulties of homesick campers, interpersonal conflicts, and the physical demands of camp life teaches them perseverance and mental toughness. Additionally, the reflective nature of camp—often located in serene, natural settings—allows for personal growth. Counsellors develop a better understanding of themselves, their values, and their aspirations, which can guide their future educational and career choices. The experience of working at a summer camp, like Pearce Williams Summer Camp, is transformative for many young adults. It offers a foundation of transferable skills—from leadership and teamwork to communication and empathy—skills that are applicable in many future scenarios. For those aged 16 to 19, the journey of being a camp counsellor is not just a summer job; it is a stepping stone to a successful and rounded adult life. As these young adults return to their everyday lives, they carry with them not just memories of campfires and canoe rides, but skills and experiences that will shape their futures for years to come.

  • Why should parents send their kids to camp?

    Sending kids to summer camp, such as Pearce Williams Summer Camp and Retreat Centre, offers a multitude of benefits that contribute to their growth, happiness, and development. Here are several compelling reasons why parents should consider this enriching experience for their children: Builds Independence: Camp is a wonderful opportunity for kids to become more independent. Away from home, they make decisions for themselves, manage their daily needs, and navigate new situations, which boosts their confidence and self-reliance. Enhances Social Skills: Summer camp is a melting pot of diversity, where kids meet others from various backgrounds. They learn to communicate, collaborate, and live together in close quarters, fostering empathy, understanding, and lifelong friendships. Connects with Nature: In today’s digital age, camp provides a precious chance to unplug and immerse in nature. Activities like hiking, swimming, and camping under the stars help children develop a love and respect for the environment. Promotes Physical Activity: Camps offer an array of physical activities that encourage children to move, play, and explore. This active lifestyle is essential for healthy growth and development, combating the sedentary habits often formed during the school year. Develops New Skills: Whether it’s archery, canoeing, or arts and crafts, camp introduces children to new hobbies and skills. This exploration sparks creativity, builds talents, and can uncover passions they carry into adulthood. Fosters Resilience: Facing challenges, trying new things, and sometimes failing, camp teaches kids resilience. They learn to persevere, overcome obstacles Going to overnight summer camp changed my life - gave me direction and the desire to give back to children and youth the experience that I had. It was more about the powerful role models than the activities - "adults" who were probably 18 - who helped when I was made fun of for being fat, or eating more than the other kids. Camp can and does change lives for the better. Camp gives children a safe space to discover themselves away from their family. I love camp - I'm sure your child will to. Dreaming of camp, Joe Richards, Executive Director & Guitar Guy

  • Why teenagers benefit from having mentors who aren't their parents - and working at camp can help them find mentors.

    This article came into my email to day from my friends at GoCampPro. The article from Psychology Today explains why teenagers benefit from having mentors who aren't their parents. Mentors can be anyone from teachers to coaches who support and encourage teens. Research shows that mentorship helps teenagers develop socially, emotionally, and intellectually. It helps them manage challenges, learn new perspectives, and believe in themselves. Although some teens find mentors through programs, many do not. However, all teenagers can seek out mentors by identifying adults they admire and asking for guidance. The article offers steps for teens to find a mentor, emphasizing the importance of mutual respect and learning in the mentor-mentee relationship. For more details, you can read the full article here. I am struck by the idea that many teens are unable to find mentors. Summer Camp offers a great place to find mentors that will help you for the rest of your life. Many of our Pearce Williams alumni speak to this. My own camp directors, counsellors, and programmers from 30 to 40 years ago still live in my memories and help me - as a summer camp professional - make decisions and do my work still to this day. Teens and young adults who work at camp often find the experience is a positive one that impacts their life for a long time. The beauty of a close knit community where they try new things, learn new skills, have failures and learn how to grow from them - ALL away from the safety of their home and parents - this type of community does not exist in many places. Summer Camp, especially overnight summer camp, can help teens find mentors. If you know a teen or young adult who is a student in the London, Ontario area - including Sarnia, Chatham, Woodstock, St. Thomas, and Elgin County - Pearce Williams Summer Camp is one of the best jobs they can do to find mentors and to grow into the best possible version of themselves. Joe Richards, Executive Director & Guitar Guy

  • 5 Reasons Teens Should Work at Overnight Summer Camps

    Are you a teenager wondering how to make the most of your summer? (Or a parent looking for a summer job for your child?) Working at an overnight summer camp could be just the thing for you! If you are from London, Ontario or Elgin County or St. Thomas, Ontario - consider applying today to work at Pearce Williams Summer Camp. Here are five fantastic reasons why working at an overnight summer camp is a must: Make Lifelong Friends: Camp is a place where friendships bloom like wildflowers! By working at a summer camp, you get to meet people from all over, forming bonds that can last a lifetime. From campfire stories to teamwork challenges, you'll create memories and friendships that will stick with you forever. Learn Valuable Skills: Camp isn't just about fun and games (although there's plenty of that too!). It's also an amazing place to learn important skills like leadership, communication, and problem-solving. Whether you're leading a hike, teaching a craft, or organizing a game, you'll develop skills that will help you succeed in school, work, and life. Unplug and Connect with Nature: In today's digital world, it's easy to get glued to screens all day long. But at summer camp, you'll have the chance to unplug and reconnect with the great outdoors. From hiking through the forest to our canoe day trip, you'll get to experience the beauty of nature up close and personal. Build Confidence: Working at a summer camp can be a real confidence booster! As you take on new challenges and responsibilities, you'll discover just how capable you are. Whether it's leading a group of campers on a nature walk or performing in a talent show, you'll gain confidence in yourself and your abilities. Have Tons of Fun: Last but certainly not least, working at a summer camp is just plain fun! From epic water balloon fights to hilarious skits and songs, there's never a dull moment at camp. You'll laugh, you'll play, and you'll make memories that you'll cherish for years to come. So why wait? Take the plunge and apply to work at an overnight summer camp today! It's an experience you'll never forget. Pearce Williams has been around since 1960 and 1000's of young people have gotten a great start working as a summer camp staff here. If you have any questions - please email me directly - and I will get back to you or direct you to the best person to answer the question. Dreaming of camp, Joe Richards, Executive Director & Guitar Guy

  • Unlock Your Teen's Potential: Top 5 Benefits of Pearce Williams' 3-Week Overnight CIT Program

    Pearce Williams offers 3 weeks of Counsellor-In-Training Programming for young adults and teens that are finished grade 9 and are turning 15 by the end of this year. Our programs are designed not just for fun but also for fostering personal growth, skill development, and leadership abilities in adolescents. Here are five great reasons for your teen to join the Pearce Williams Counsellor-In-Training (CIT) Program: Become a Leader: Our CIT program is a fantastic way for teens to learn how to be leaders. They'll get to run activities, look after younger campers, and make important decisions. This hands-on way of learning leadership is super valuable and something they might not get in school. Make New Friends and Work Together: By joining the Pearce Williams CIT program, your teen will meet other kids from different places. This is a great chance for them to learn how to get along with others, communicate better, and work as a team. They'll learn to share ideas, solve problems together, and reach goals as a group. Grow Up a Bit: Spending time away from home helps teens become more independent and responsible. At Pearce Williams, they'll learn to take care of themselves, keep track of their things, and make good choices. This helps them feel more confident and ready for new challenges. Solve Problems: Our CIT program puts teens in situations where they have to think critically and solve problems. Whether it's figuring out how to stop a disagreement or changing plans because of the weather, they'll learn to think quickly and come up with solutions. This makes them stronger and more able to handle whatever comes their way. Find Out Who They Are: Being part of a three-weeks at camp is a special chance for teens to learn about themselves. They'll try new things, take on new roles, and see what they're really good at. This helps them understand themselves better and make decisions about their future. The Pearce Williams CIT program is more than just a fun time away from home. It's a chance for young people to learn, grow, and prepare for what's ahead, all while making lasting memories and friendships. This program is great for families and teens that are local to camp - from St. Thomas, Ontario area; the London, Ontario area; and all of southwestern Ontario. Let me know if you have any questions - Joe Richards, Executive Director

  • Trusting an Overnight Summer Camp: A Parent’s Guide

    Trusting an Overnight Summer Camp: A Parent’s Guide Sending your child to an overnight camp can feel like a big decision. Here’s what you need to know to feel confident and trust the camp: Camp Reputation: Research the camp thoroughly. Read reviews, talk to other parents - ask for references, and learn about the camp’s history. A camp that has been around and is trusted by other parents is most likely to provide a positive experience for your child. Staff Expertise: Trust that the camp knows its stuff! Experienced counsellors and staff play a crucial role. They’re like camp wizards who create a safe and fun environment. Ask about their qualifications and training. Safety Measures: Understand the safety protocols. Is the camp a member of the local camping association? Ask about emergency procedures, medical care, and supervision. How do they handle situations like allergies, accidents, or kids missing home? (Pearce Williams is a member of the Ontario Camps Association {OCA} and follows the standards of the OCA and the camping standards of the United Church of Canada. Activities and Facilities: Explore the camp’s activities. Are they age-appropriate? Do they allow the campers to pick the activities or travel by cabin group - both work for diffrent types of children. Check if they have proper facilities for swimming, hiking, and other adventures. What are the cabins like? Do they have proper ways to keep campers cool or warm depending on the need? Communication: Camps should keep you informed. Ask about communication channels—will they update you regularly? Knowing your child’s well-being is essential. Sleepovers and Independence: Has your child spent nights away from home? Successful sleepovers with friends or relatives indicate readiness. Also, consider shorter sessions for their first time at camp. Pearce Williams offers First Timers Camp for new campers aged 5 to 9. Responsibility: Can your child manage their belongings and basic needs? Does your child have the basic life skills to interact with other children and camp staff? Comfort with Authority Figures: Is your child okay seeking help from other adults? Camps have counsellors and staff who guide and support. Your child should be comfortable following direction and being part of a community like camp. Picky Eaters: If your child is particular about food, discuss dietary needs with the camp. Camps should be able to accommodate most dietary restrictions, allergies or religious preferences. Pre-Camp Talks: Address pre-camp jitters. Talk to your child about missing home—it’s normal! Assure them that you’ll be there in spirit and that camp is an exciting adventure that you are excited about to. Remember, summer camp isn’t just about fun; it’s about growth, friendships, and lasting memories. Learn to trust the camp community you choose, and watch your child thrive! Joe Richards, Executive Director, Pearce Williams (since 2005)

  • St. Thomas & London Summer Camp - Who comes to Pearce Williams?

    I have been the Executive Director at Pearce Williams since 2005. Over 20 years here at camp I have seen thousands of people come through our facility and our summer camp program. Pearce Williams serves the city of St. Thomas, the city of London, and all of southwestern Ontario. The majority of our campers come from southwestern Ontario - St. Thomas, London, Chatham, Windsor, Woodstock, Sarnia, Kitchener, Cambridge, Waterloo. We do have campers from Toronto and other areas of Ontario. We also have campers from the United States - including Alaska! At Pearce Williams, I have created a culture where campers don’t merely attend; they belong. Pearce Williams is a family-like community where kids can thrive. Your child will learn about independence, friendship, and responsibility while exploring the great outdoors. We are a place where healthy risks are encouraged, successes are celebrated, and self-esteem blossoms. Pearce Williams runs a Camper Choice program style - allowing campers to choose their own path. Whether it’s the Counsellor-In-Training Adventure Learning Week, the Jr. Sports & Arts Camp, or the Leadership Camp, each experience contributes to personal growth and resilience. Parents rave about Pearce Williams, we have been thanked for making first-time campers feel comfortable and safe. The memories created here are cherished, and every child deserves a week at Pearce Williams to help them discover a home away from home that they can return to year after year. I don't want you to forget that beyond summer, Pearce Williams serves as a rustic wedding venue and a year-round retreat center. So whether you’re a parent seeking a transformative experience for your child or an adult seeking solace in nature, Pearce Williams awaits with open arms. Come discover your second home. Joe Richards, Executive Director

  • Are summer camps good for kids? Summer Camps: Fun Adventures for Kids!

    Summer Camps: Fun Adventures for Kids! Summer camps offer many benefits for your children. Here are 9 ways summer camp is a great place for your child: Making Friends: At summer camp, your child will meet new friends in a safe place. They learn how to get along with others and build social skills. It’s like growing a friendship garden! Feeling Brave: Camp helps kids be brave. Away from home and school, your child will try new things and become more independent. Imagine climbing a tree or paddling a canoe—they’re like little superheroes! Unforgettable Moments: Camp memories stick with you forever. Whether it’s laughing around the campfire, facing fears, or trying cool activities, these moments will help shape your child's positive development. Nature Explorers: Overnight summer camp happens outdoors! Your child will hike through forests, play outside, and gaze at stars. It’s like having a wild adventure with Mother Nature. Kindness Zone: Pearce Williams Summer Camp is a place where everyone belongs. Your child will learn to accept others, appreciate differences, and be kind. It’s like a big friendship circle! Break from Routine: Sleepaway camp breaks the boredom cycle. It’s a refreshing change from everyday routines. Your children can recharge their energy and return to school with a smile. Awesome Role Models: Camp counsellors are like friendly guides. They cheer kids on, teach cool stuff, and inspire bravery. They’re like real-life superheroes! No Screens Allowed!: At camp, say goodbye to screens. Instead, your child will dive into outdoor adventures, play games, and chat face-to-face. It’s like a tech vacation! Skills for Life: Camp isn’t just about fun. It’s where you learn teamwork, solve puzzles, and talk with friends. These skills stick with you—even after the campfire fades. Imagine a place where learning meets laughter. That’s Pearce Williams Summer Camp! Summer Camp helps shape campers into curious, brave people who carry memories like treasures. Remember, summer camps are special places where friendships bloom, courage grows, and fun never ends! So pack your bags, send your young explorer because the adventure awaits! Joe Richards, Executive Director

  • How long is summer camp in Canada?

    In Canada, the duration of summer camps can vary based on the specific camp program and the age group of the participants. Many overnight summer camp's have been moving to shorter sessions to allow your children the opportunity to experience different settings during the summer and to help meet the needs of the modern parent. Here are some common scenarios: Overnight Summer Camps: Most traditional overnight or sleepaway camps offer 1 week or 2 week sessions for your child. The summer camp season in Canada typically is 8 to 10 weeks during July and August. During this time, camps will offere a variety of 5 day, 2 week or longer sessions where campers stay at the campsite, participate in various activities, build friendships, and enjoy the great outdoors. These camps offer a comprehensive experience, including outdoor adventures, arts and crafts, sports, and team-building activities. Campers often develop lifelong memories and skills during their extended stay. Specialty Camps: Some camps focus on specific interests or skills, such as sports, arts, or academics. These specialty camps may have shorter sessions. Pearce Williams Summer Camp in Southwestern Ontario offers programs for children ages 5 to 14. Our sessions are 5 days long, from Sunday to Friday. Pearce Williams also offers a shorter 3 day camp for First Time Campers that runs from a Tuesday to a Friday once a summer. Flexible Options: Some camps allow families to choose the duration that best suits their needs. Whether it’s a full summer or a shorter session, flexibility ensures that campers can participate without disrupting other commitments. Remember that the length of summer camp depends on the camp type, location, and individual preferences. Parents should explore various options and select a camp that aligns with their child’s interests and schedule. Trust is the most important feature of a camp to many families. It is important to understand the values of the overnight summer camp and where they fit in being partners in the parenting of your children. Dreaming of camp,

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