The Senior Camper Challenge Program is a complementary program that continues the progress made in our in-camp program. Senior Campers is for individuals who have previously participated in the Camp Buckskin program for one or more sessions. These campers have demonstrated the necessary swimming, and canoeing skills but also the group participation abilities to meet the challenges of this program.
These prerequisites help ensure not only the child’s physical safety, but also their social and emotional well being. Camp does not want to place a child in a situation that they could not successfully complete, as this would directly oppose the program’s goal of strengthening one’s self-concept. The individual needs to stretch his or her perceived limits, but to the degree to which they feel relatively comfortable. Consequently only individuals who are recommended by staff can be accepted into this program.
Senior Campers help plan and then participate in canoe trips into the scenic north woods. The group size is limited to a maximum of 9 people (7 campers and 2 staff members). Each group is accompanied by staff that has current certifications in CPR, Life guarding, and Wilderness First Aid.
There are generally three trips taken each session, with the number of days and distances adjusted according to the group’s overall level of ability. Because of the challenges of ‘living on the trail,’ the Senior Camper program strongly emphasizes social skill development, teamwork, leadership, cooperation, and acceptance of personal responsibility. Reading and writing are also important parts of this program as time is dedicated to these activities each day — both when in camp and on the trail.