How To Be a Great Camp Counselor
Whether you’ve been a camp counselor for years or this is your first time around, you need a game plan for success. You’re there to work and serve the kids entrusted into your care. If you want to make a meaningful impact on kids’ lives, learn how to be a great camp counselor.
Be Emotionally Available
Every camp counselor must make themselves emotionally available to their students. The kids will come with all their excitement, joy, pain, and troubles, and these emotions may spill out at some point. While you can’t fix their broken home or school problems, you can create a safe space for them at camp. Listen well and hear them out, offering a comforting shoulder in case they need it.
Prepare for Emergencies
Emergencies can happen at any time, and you’re responsible for the safety of the kids in your care. You may not have medical training, but you can get CPR certified before working your summer camp. If you’re a first-time camp counselor, you must understand emergency procedures. Ask questions about first aid care, fire escape routes, and more so you can confidently lead your kids out of trouble.
Make Space for Self-Care
You won’t get enough sleep. You’ll spend hours with energetic young kids. You’ll be physically exhausted from running around with them all day. Let’s face it; you need self-care to be a great camp counselor.
If you want to provide for the students in your care, you need to have something to provide to them. Otherwise, you’ll just use up every last drop of your energy until you’re burnt out and frustrated. Spend time alone, journal about your experience, run away for a power nap—find activities you like to do and take advantage of them.
Knowing how to be a great camp counselor and actually being one are two very different things. Take the time to prepare yourself before the big adventure and always work your hardest to put the kids first.