Summer is a great time to relax, tan, and enjoy the sun. But for kids, the break between school should be filled with fun, games, and new friends.
A popular way for kids to do this is by attending a summer day camp.
London’s YMCA centre offers many day camp programs for kids as young as 4 years old, to as old as 16 years old.
General Manager for the YMCA summer day camps, Chris Wick, says in addition to having fun, it’s important to teach kids some core values while away at camp.
“Respect, responsibility, caring, and honesty. We interweave these qualities throughout our programs. We want our children to be responsible for their wellbeing and their own stuff, we want them to care for the other campers, and we want them to be honest about their experience”.
Wick also says there are lots of different camp options, appealing to the interests of almost any child. They have camps within their branches where kids have the opportunity to do different activities like swimming, gym games, and outdoor activities.
There are also camps located at the Fanshawe Conservation Area, where kids spend most of their time outdoors playing forest games, field sports, nature hikes, and boating.
Another popular camp Wick mentioned is their sports camps. At Fanshawe College, they are doing weeks of multi-sport camps, where kids can learn about different sports every day. He says it’s important for kids to remain active and healthy while learning in a wholesome environment.
With all the options for summer day camps, it can be difficult to decide which one to attend. It becomes even more difficult when the prices for camp are out of your budget.
Chris Wick says the YMCA offers various financial assistance opportunities for families who are unable to pay the full fee.
“We work with every family to make sure anybody who wants a camp experience is able to access a camp experience”.
He adds that his favourite part about summer camp is watching the friendships that come out of it.
“We have campers that will only have camp friends. So they go to a different school or live in a different part of London, and they never see their friends until camp!”
He also says sometimes the first day of camp can feel like the first day of school. So they start off by playing icebreaker games to get the kids who are feeling hesitant to feel like part of their own little family.