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Photocredit: Jacqueline Biollo

The Curious Case of Summer Camp | By Jacqueline Biollo

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When school lets out in June, and parents seek options for their school-aged children to remain safe, engaged, and perhaps supervised over the summer months, many seek to sign their children up for some form of summer camp. Oh, Summer Camp. The place where children go either close to home or away for a while, where recreational and sporting activities provide memorable experiences for children during the summer holiday period.

Statistics Canada reports that over 5.7 million elementary and secondary school-aged children take a break from the classroom and head off to camp yearly.
Aside from the apparent benefits of summer camp, such as building friendships and enhancing social skills, summer camp can help children develop resiliency and confidence, help them stay or become more physically active, and encourage them to bond with nature.

But what about the Camp Counselors? The individuals are empowered to plan activities, interact with children, and maintain open communication with parents, including providing feedback on the programs and services a camp environment provides and so much more.

On average, Camp Counselors require a broad range of skills to complement the day-to-day activities, such as interpersonal skills, especially with school-aged children, conflict management skills, or the ability to de-escalate situations. Activity-based skills such as musical, theatrical, physical, or other would enhance their ability to be a good Camp Counselor and an asset to any camp environment.

The salary comparison is based on job title, skills, experience, and education and is reported to range from $17 – $20 per hour in Canada. The cost of a summer camp depends on the overall experience offered and the amenities provided. On average, the cost of an overnight camp can range from $300 – $1,000 per week. Day camps cost between $35 – $500 a week.

Although summer camp experiences are personal and unique, unfortunate situations occur (such as swimming tragedies, food allergies, and general negligence by counsellors and supervisors). Research tells us that with due diligence in choosing a summer camp, the benefits of summer camp will be immeasurable. Benefits include personal growth, socialization, moral and ethical awareness, physical fitness, and creativity.

Jacqueline Biollo founded an inner-city arts program called ArtStart. More than 150 children from the program experienced the spirit of community as guests at the Tim Hortons® Foundation Camps. Jacqueline saw firsthand the lasting impact a camp environment had on these children – allowing them through challenges, perseverance, fun, and respect to help them see their best selves. Consider helping change a child’s life by supporting Tim Hortons Camp Day on July 19, 2023. For more information, visit
Photo by Cheree Steegstra




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