Although it is cold and blustery out, parents and children all over New Jersey are already exploring summer camp options. In a time where costs are skyrocketing and everything is becoming more and more expensive, it is comforting to know that girls can still have an affordable and amazing experience this summer at camp offered by the Girl Scouts.
If you have ever gone to summer camp you probably have fond memories of sitting around the camp fire roasting marshmallows, singing everywhere you went, making new best friends and spending sunny days underneath the trees. Some things change, but these traditions remain the same. Today’s campers learn how to shoot a bow and arrow, cook over a camp fire, swim in a lake or pool, climb a rock wall, get messy with a science experiment, discover their inner artist and find their voice as they gain the confidence to speak in front of a group.
Opportunities to try new things
“Girl Scouts has helped to give me confidence and a willingness to try new things,” said Cathie Koenig, 13. “I had never picked up a bow before Oak Spring Day Camp, but now I really enjoy archery. Just as I was willing to pick up that bow for the first time, I’m also willing to try other new things because I’m confident in the skills I’ve learned and what I’ve been taught.”
Meeting new people and making lasting friendships is another part of camp that girls look forward to every year. “My favorite part of camp is making new friends, said Jessica Sapia, 14.” You spend a lot of time with the girls in your program and it's great how close you can become after only one week. l talk to a lot of my camp friends outside of camp too!”
The Girl Scouts of Central & Southern NJ offers camp options focused on activities and experiences that will help them build courage, confidence and character. Girls are given opportunities to try new things that are on the edge of their comfort zone while in a supportive environment.
“One of my favorite memories was when I first went to Inawendiwin Day Camp,” said Rachel Minz, 11. “The girls in my program and I did competed in a camp wide contest where we had to make an entire outfit out of newspaper. I was chosen to model this outfit on stage in front of the whole camp! I was nervous at first and then I just owned it, even in front of everyone. Once I was done I was so happy I went on stage and went through with it.”
'I realized that camp wasn't a scary place'
Girls can also challenge themselves with a week away from home at the Sacajawea resident camp. “The first time I went away to camp, I was scared,” said Ingrid Alva, 14. “I didn’t know how it was going to be because I was far away from my parents, but in the end I loved it. I realized that camp wasn’t a scary place, it was a place where fun lives. I got so used to being away from home because everyone in camp is so nice that they tend to become like a family.”
All interested girls in grades K–9 can go to Girl Scout summer camp and have amazing adventures, make lasting friendships and try new things. Campers don’t have to be a current Girl Scout member to register for Girl Scout summer camp. Girls can choose from a variety of different program and camp options; GSCSNJ offers Sacajawea resident camp in Newfield, NJ and two day camps options; Camp Inawendiwin in Medford, NJ or Oak Spring Camp in Somerset, NJ. No matter what program a girl might choose to participate in at summer camp, the core values that girls learn are the same. Girls participate in activities that are designed to push their boundaries and grow as leaders.
“It’s unconsciously ingrained in you to be a better person at Girl Scout Camp,” Elizabeth Ruffe, 15. “For me at least, I personally feel that going to camp has helped me develop into the confident leader I am today. I’ve gained social and leadership skills, as well as some practical things, too.”
For more information about Girl Scout summer camp or to register today please visit www.campforgirls.org or look for our camps on Facebook. For more information about the Girl Scouts of Central & Southern NJ, visitwww.gscsnj.org.