Greening at Camp Is One Very Significant Way Camps Give the World a World of Good!

We're totally celebrating the beginning of Spring in New England's summer camp world! Today, the Vernal Equinox 2014, seems a great time to share this great story about how many camps today teach children invaluable lessons about respecting and caring for the Earth. Day and overnight summer camps are designed to optimize children's growth and development. At camp, children play, learn, and connect--with other people and with the Earth. Experiencing the out-of-doors has always been a part of camp life; even specialty camps that require indoor studios or high-tech equipment are intentional about the time their campers spend outside. For some urban children, summer camp experiences offer the only sustained time they have to spend exploring and embracing the natural world.

How camps help their campers gain environmental literacy and develop lifelong skills for caring for the environment certainly varies from camp to camp. What they are doing is as fascinating as it is powerful; it's clear that camps are playing a primary role in fostering this important type of learning. The author of the recent article, "Where Simplicity Matters Most: The Greening of Summer Camp," which appeared on page 112 of the Spring edition of WellesleyWeston Magazine is Jenna Ringelheim, who grew up attending summer camp in New England. Jenna, an environmentalist with an MBA in Business Sustainability from Bainbridge University and an MA in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University, writes about and consults on environmental matters and transformational leadership, coaching and personal development from her home in the Pacific Northwest. She's also a member of the New England-based Wildflower Foundation, which has a mission to send grieving children to summer camp.

Whether campers are harvesting organic greens from the camp garden, minimizing food waste, eating from dishes that have been cleaned by a solar-powered dishwasher, clearing trails or waterways, getting around using muscle power instead of gas power, or finding unique and authentic ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle, they are learning ways of being green that will benefit their families, schools, communities, and the world. We say that camp gives kids a world of good. Camps give the world a world of good, too. Greening at camp is one very significant way."  - Bette Bussel, Executive Director, ACA New England

We're thrilled to read about the following ACA Accredited camps which are featured in the article: Concord Academy Summer Camp, the Farm & Wilderness Camps, Meadowbrook Day Camp, Nobles Day Camp. Summer Fenn Day Camp, and YMCA Camp Huckins. And, we're equally thrilled to see the wise words of ACA New England's Executive Director, Bette Bussel.

Happy Spring! On this day when the entire northern hemisphere is focusing on the Earth, isn't it great to know that camps are doing such a great job of preparing children to take care of it?