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Take The Next Step With An Adventure Camp

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Tips on selecting an adventure camp
There are several key things parents should consider when choosing an adventure camp.
1. Talk with the camp director. Explore the philosophy and mission of the camp and the director to ascertain that it is a good fit with your child and your family.

2. Ask about the camper to staff ratio. This ratio should usually be no greater than five or six campers per counselor. This is especially true for those camps that are actually adventure trips.

3. Ask about the instructors or counselors. How are they selected and trained? What experience do they have with the outdoors and the adventures involved? Are they certified with CPR and first aid? Have they been trained as Wilderness First Responders or have they received some other specialized training for handling outdoors emergencies?

4. Ask about the campís safety rating. Have any youngsters sustained serious injury in recent years and how did the injury occur?

5. Beware of large programs. It is much easier to build safety in a small program with a well-trained staff.

6. Ask about the camper return rate. If the camp is a good experience, the youngsters will want to return year after year.

7. Ask about the counselor return rate. Many of these counselors are college students or recent college graduates with an interest in the camping. If these counselors return year after year, they are dedicated to the program and the youngsters with whom they are dealing.

8. Ask for references. Parents and youngsters that have already attended will be able to give you good information about the camp, the counselors and whether or not it will be a good fit for your or your youngster.

9. Ask for a brochure. It is often easier to compare the offerings of adventure camps by comparing the brochures and literature the camp sends. You can also get a sense of how well the camp is operated by the responsiveness of the staff in sending out literature and brochures. The design and information included in the brochure may also give you some hints on how well the camp is managed.

10. Visit the camp website. Valuable information that you can use as selection criteria is often posted online. It is easy to compare a number of camps by comparing the information on their websites.

11. Ask about the history of the camp and the background of the camp director. Is the director the owner of the camp? How did he or she come to be involved in this business? Did he or she start the camp? What is the directorís training? Is the director hands on, meaning is he or she on site and involved in the camp activities.

12. Finally, talk about the various adventure camps with your child. One of the most important keys to success is the childís attitude and willingness to participate in the experience. There is no point in trying to send your child to an adventure camp if he or she simply does not want to go. With most of these camps the selection process is a two-way process. While you are evaluating the camp, the camp is evaluating your child to make sure he or she will fit with the campís environment. Some of these camps even require the child to write an essay as a requirement for acceptance as a tool to measure his or her ability to adapt.

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