In my travels this winter I have talked with numerous parents and grandparents who have told me stories of their children and grandchildren who came home from camp totally changed for the better. In fact, yesterday I had a grandmother tell me that her two grandkids, who are now married and grown, made their most significant life changes at Lake Ann Camp. One even met her spouse here when she worked as a counselor. CCCA, the camping organization that we are a member of, just did a survey of parents following the 2018 camping season and here is a summary of their findings:
- 51 percent of parents said their campers returned home “nicer or more pleasant to other family members”
- 44 percent of campers said they want to spend more time in nature since returning home
- 48 percent of campers strongly agreed they feel more confident since returning home
- 71 percent of campers strongly agreed their faith was strengthened
While it is great to hear of Christian camping as a whole, I believe you will find some very unique distinctive of Lake Ann Camp that may push those numbers even higher. Here are a few thoughts on what makes Lake Ann Camp such a life-changing experience:
- Our counselors receive 15 days of training before a single camper arrives for the summer. Those days begin at 8:00 in the morning and go until at least 9:30 p.m.
- Lake Ann Camp runs 5 age-specific programs each week of the summer meaning that our teaching is very specific to the needs of each age level and not a one size fits all.
- Each program in the summer has a specific male and female program director who is trained to understand the needs of their campers and to respond to those needs.
- Each day of the summer the seasonal staff have a staff meeting that seeks to keep them on track and growing in their own response to the challenges that they face and to help them be fully engaged in their camper’s lives.
- Each camper, in a public setting, will have a one on one discussion with their counselor about their spiritual life. The majority of the life-changing decisions that happen at Lake Ann happen in those settings even more than in the chapel sessions.
- After camp, a form called, My Next Move, is sent to the camper’s church to help churches follow-up on decisions made at camp. These are seen and signed by the camper.