Summer is nearly upon us, and if you have yet to consider which camp you’ll send your kids to this year you’re a little late to the game. If you never attended camp as a child, then you lack have the fond memories that endear many parents to a particular locale and prompt them to send their kids there. So you might be swimming through a sea of summer camp brochures that all look the same. How do you choose? One great way is to pick a feature that interests you as a way to narrow down the options. And by considering only eco-friendly summer camps you can seriously slash the length of your list and ensure that your child goes to a camp that offers more than just the opportunity to swim and pull pranks on other cabins. Here are a few great reasons to choose a green summer camp for your kids.
For starters, there are more of these camps out there than you might imagine, and there’s bound to be one relatively near your home, so it’s not like you have to ship the kids halfway across the country to give them the green camp experience. Even amongst eco-friendly establishments there is a lot of variation, with some offering lessons in sustainability while others tout the humane treatment of animals. So if there are certain lessons you want your kids to learn along the lines of environmental friendliness, you won’t have to settle for something that they are already learning adequately at home.
But what are the real benefits of choosing an eco-friendly camp over other types? For one thing, it could give your kids an experience that they won’t find anywhere else. Sure, your school district has a recycling program in place, and they may even source local farms for fresh food in the cafeteria, but are they teaching your children about the value of organic goods? Do they realize what happens to a can or bottle if they throw it in the trash instead of the recycling bin? Without the education to accompany these initiatives there’s really no call for kids to develop an awareness of their own role in a society that creates rampant pollution and waste. These are things they can learn at a camp run on eco-friendly principles.
Of course, in addition to real-world instruction that they can bring home and use throughout the rest of the year (and their lives), you’ll almost certainly be sending them to a healthy environment, in every sense of the word. And they’ll obtain the knowledge and skills to make eco-friendly changes in their lives and their communities when they return. Bike Camp in Oregon, for example, gets kids out in the world and exercising by teaching them to safely ride and repair their bicycles. Camp Ecology in Colorado uses the abundant natural environment of Aspen to teach kids why and how to protect natural resources. And the Longacre Leadership Program in Pennsylvania helps kids to develop a community spirit and environmentally sound sensibilities as they spend the summer working together on a 200-acre organic farm (it’s almost as good as a masters in strategic leadership with an emphasis on sustainability).
Those are just a few of the possibilities when you seek an eco-friendly summer camp for your kids. The point is that there are many options to explore when it comes to giving your kids the opportunity to expand their horizons at a summer camp. And if they learn to appreciate the environment in the process, so much the better for the future of our planet.