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Camp: Bring the Whole Family!
The kids are back from camp bouncing with stories of new friends, fun activities, and favorite memories. Wouldn’t it be great if your entire family could have the bonding, fun, rejuvenating experience of camp? That’s what many other families are thinking this fall, too. The idea of family camp is not only compelling, it’s more popular than ever!
What Is Family Camp?
Over the past fifteen years, the number of camp programs designed for families has doubled. Family camps are typically residential multi-day camp experiences for children and family members, and they can play a role in enhancing family functioning. Families can find a program length that suits their needs — from one-day sessions to week-long experiences. There are also many different activities offered at family camp, often including hiking, arts/crafts, swimming, biking, canoeing, challenge/ropes courses, and more!
Benefits of Family Camp
Families enjoy the same benefits that kids experience at camp — unplugging from technology, enjoying healthy activities, and working on relational skills! But there are also additional benefits to the family camp experience. In a recent study, families reported benefits including positive impacts of the camp staff, reinforcement of good parenting, and reinforcement of good family relationships.
Many families choose family camp as a fun and relaxing outdoor vacation experience. At camp, the meals, activities, and schedules are usually all taken care of, so families can focus on the fun stuff! And, since there are so many activities offered at camp, each family member has a safe environment to do what he or she wants. That means that if Dad is the only one excited about a sunrise hike, the rest of the family can sleep in a little and hear all about his morning adventure at the pool later.
Family camps are also an opportunity for first-time campers and camp families — who might not otherwise be familiar with the camp experience due to young age of the child, cultural traditions, or time spent in other enrichment programs outside of the family — to explore and acclimate to the camp experience together.
Choosing the Right Family Camp
Finding the right family camp is a lot like finding the right summer camp for your child: You have to do your homework. There are many different options for location, price, activities offered, and more. Selecting a camp that aligns with a particular family’s values can also be a search factor. Find the perfect family camp experience with ACA’s Find a Camp database, which includes 220+ adult and family camp programs — of which 180+ are ACA-accredited.
Learn more about ACA accreditation.