Each summer at camp, we consistently push our campers with Asperger’s Syndrome and High Function Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) to try new things and to be open to learn something new. It’s such an important part of camp for them to step out of their comfort zone and take a leap of faith with the support of their counselors. This is what camp is all about, and why we see so much growth in our campers each summer.
It’s only fair then, that we challenge ourselves to try new things, and continue growing as camp professionals, too! As with every year, for three days in March, we took some time to do just that at the Tri-State Camp Conference in New Jersey. Camps from around the country (and world!) assembled together for the largest camp conference in the world all with one common goal, challenging ourselves to keep learning and making camp better for today’s youth. Every year, we walk away from the conference with new found motivation to bring new ideas to camp, and to do everything we can to make camp better. It’s amazing to be surrounded by so many professionals with the same passion for growing their programs.
A few highlights from this year:
- Susan Cain, author of Quiet, gave the opening keynote address about how to harness the power of introverted people at camp. It was very thought provoking and challenged us to think about how we encourage and support our introverted campers and staff members.
- We got some great new ideas on how to continually support our amazing staff, and give them even more tools to help our campers with Asperger’s Syndrome and High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) make meaningful peer connections.
- Our very own assistant director Kevin was a member of Program Committee for the conference, and helped bring in many of the awesome speakers who provoked our minds! He also took an American Camp Association (ACA) Standards course, to continue our accreditation with the ACA. Did you know Camp Akeela is ACA accredited and what that means? Check out what accreditation means for your family here http://www.acacamps.org/staff-professionals/accreditation-standards/accreditation/about-aca-accreditation.
We’re proud to be part of an industry that is always learning and growing, and love sharing that passion with our amazing campers!