The term camp professional doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue of many kids when asked, “what you would like to be when you grow up.” Many people aren’t aware that working in and for camps is a career. The question we are often asked is, “what is your real job or when will you get a real job.” It is OK, people just don’t understand especially if they haven’t had a camp experience that has changed their life. Camp is pretty real to me and all of my colleagues. Some aspects of working at a camp full time are very businesslike. We have budgets, we hire staff and we market our product which is a camp experience. It is not always easy as we have ups and downs, good years and bad years.
I am pretty confident though that many of us do not get into the camping business for the business parts, maybe some do but more often I think we are in it for the people and for the opportunity to change lives. Often, we work in the spirit of giving back because our lives were changed at camp. We know camps help people to grow and unfold into who they are meant to be. We know a camp experience can bring out the best in people.
I find this also true for our summer camp staff and our school year program staff. These young staff members come back year after year, sometimes stealing one last summer or semester before moving on to what most of the world calls a real job to have just one more opportunity to change a kids life.
Check out this post from just last week by one of our Program Staff--
“I spent today with a group of inner-city high school Freshmen. They were at camp for a day retreat. Usually I expect freshmen to be “too cool” to answer questions, but instead I got that and so much more. For only 5 hours together they asked me deep questions, I shared prayer experiences, we played team building activities “games.”
At one point I asked “questions? Comments? Concerns? Fun facts?”
A girl shot her hand up in the air: “I have a fun fact...well it’s more of a statement...I really thought today was going to be lame, but It’s actually pretty fun.”
Another girl: “your jokes aren’t funny”
Groups like this, honest and open to grow, are my favorite. This stuff never gets old.”
---Kristy Hamilton, Program Staff
It is true that camp offers one of a kind experiences that change lives and those of us whom are lucky enough to work at a camp have are truly blessed to help make that happen. And that is about as real as it gets to me.
Angi K Sullivan
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Camp is such an unique experience! Our staff take turns sharing their perspectives of the experience that is CYO Camp Rancho Framasa!
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