In today’s society we hear from many families who have concerns about letting their children spend time away from home. As a family-owned camp with a number of parents on our year-round team, we understand the anxiety that comes with making a decision about a sleep-away camp, especially a camp that is far from home.
At Camp Friendship we know how important it is that both parents and children feel ready for the overnight camp experience. We value your trust and work hard to earn it. We strongly believe in the benefits of the camp experience for all children, regardless of age or nationality, which is why we have provided a safe, fun and nurturing environment for our campers for more than 50 summers.
- Why should I send my child to camp?
Children who attend summer camps often show an increase in self-confidence and independence. They learn positive values from positive role models and gain leadership and communication skills outside of the school and home setting. Children have a chance to develop as individuals and are given the freedom to be themselves. 11 million children and parents can’t be wrong!
- Why Camp Friendship?
Established in 1966, Camp Friendship follows a child-centered philosophy that fosters independence and encourages growth in each of our campers. Campers are given the freedom to design their own weekly activity schedule, choosing from over 35 different activities including water sports, performing and creative arts, land sports, horseback riding, adventure activities and more.
Camp Friendship offers the unique opportunity to bring the world closer to our campers through our internationally diverse program. Over 100 different countries have been represented at Camp Friendship through campers and staff, and this has allowed campers to learn firsthand about foreign cultures and traditions. Let us be your child’s home away from home this summer!
- What is ACA Accreditation?
The American Camp Association (ACA) is an organization that sets the standards for over 2,000 camps across the United States. Being an ACA accredited camp means that Camp Friendship regularly undergoes a thorough review of our operation and voluntarily meets over 300 standards in areas such as staff screening, staff qualifications and training, staff to camper ratios and emergency management.
- Is my child going to be safe?
Camp Friendship carefully selects qualified staff members to provide proper supervision and well-organized, structured activities to ensure a safe and quality experience for each and every camper. Our staff-to-camper ratios are 1 to 4 in Junior Villages and the Equestrian Village, and 1 to 6 in Senior Villages.Our fully-equipped Health Center is staffed 24 hours a day with registered nurses and health care professionals whose top priority is the wellbeing of our campers.
- How does Camp Friendship select its camp counselors?
Our Camp Directors conduct thorough searches for the very best counselors, program staff and support staff to meet our needs each year. The vast majority of counselors are college students and graduates with previous experience working with children in camps, schools, or day care programs. All candidates undergo a detailed interview process and are required to submit references as well as undergo a Federal Background Check before being hired.
International Staff go through a rigorous selection process in their home countries where they are evaluated by established organizations like Camp Counselors USA, Camp Leaders, Camp America and others. At Camp Friendship we are proud of having a high percentage of returning staff year after year.
- What if my child gets homesick?
Homesickness is an entirely natural state for anyone experiencing separation from home, but at Camp Friendship 97% of campers overcome this feeling within the first day or two of being at camp. With more than 50 years’ experience, we have innumerable success stories of campers overcoming homesickness and going on to thrive in their new environment. Camp Friendship staff are trained to recognize and respond to homesickness and understand that some campers may require more attention than others. While we can’t guarantee that your child will not be a little homesick for part of their time at camp, we can promise to do our best in helping them adjust to camp life as quickly as possible. Camp Friendship is a family-run business with a focus on family values, where campers easily settle into a new routine and quickly become part of the Camp Friendship family.
- How do we keep in touch?
Parents are able to mail or email their campers and receive hand-written mailed or e-mailed responses. If parents have concerns that need to be addressed over the phone they may call their camper’s Village Supervisor and/or the Camp Nurse for medical concerns.
- What about technology? (cell phones, iPods, tablets, kindles)
Camp Friendship’s technology free environment offers our campers the chance to unplug and connect with others face-to-face. Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Camp Friendship is a place to come together under the stars and focus on what is really important – each other.
- What activities are available at Camp Friendship?
With over 35 different activities, Camp Friendship hopes to have something for everyone! Areas of interest include water sports, performing arts, creative arts, land sports, adventure activities, horseback riding and more.
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