Vision Statement: Shaping the lives of young people by instilling respect for self, others and our natural world.
Mission Statement: Our mission is to deliver a unique camp experience to young people concentrated in the greater Philadelphia area, without regard to economic circumstances. Our programs foster personal growth and provide a safe, affordable, and nurturing place for young people to enjoy the outdoors while learning about themselves, others and the environment.
We are proud of the diversity embodied within our camp community. With campers and staff from every walk of life, and staff from over 20 countries, our camp community is vibrant and embraces the richness of our differences.
OUR STAFF: Our camp hires an amazing team of staff members from around the corner and around the globe. This professional, diverse group of folks bring an array of talents to our camp. Our staff members cultivate relationships and friendships with people whose path they would otherwise never have crossed. They leave camp having bonded with new friends just as the camp kids do. Summer experiences keep these bonds strong long after the last camp bus has left at the end of the summer. Staff and campers may come to camp without knowing a soul but leave with great memories and some new lifelong friends. Spring and Fall Outdoor School staff are able to lead students through hands-on, small group lessons and activities while using their own creativity to enhance the curriculum.
Counselors – directly working with their own group of 6-8 campers
Pool Directors – Lifeguard certified staff who also coordinate swim lessons
Nurses (RN) and Nurse Assistants (LPN, Nursing undergrad, EMT) – Providing medical services and TLC
Teen Adventure and Outpost Leaders – work with 13 and 14 year old campers in a hiking, climbing, rafting, camping program
High Ropes Course Instructors – Experienced climbers who run both our high and low ropes courses plus climbing tower
Mountain Biking Instructors – Experiences bikers who run our mountain bike program, maintain bikes and also teach kids who to ride
Environmental Educators – Staff who lead cool creek crawls, teach about our organic farm, take care of camp animals (donkeys, chickens, goats)
Camper Advocates (Behavioral Support) – Specialized behavioral support staff with experience in sociable work, counseling, special education or psychology
Village Leaders – or “Head Counselor” – coordinates and mentors all counselors within their village
Craft Instructors – Leads fantastic, awesome crafts program on a shoestring budget 🙂
SUMMER STAFF: Camp counselors are at the heart and soul of our program, however all staff participate in all areas of our camp program. With days spent guiding campers through a wide range of activities such as sports, games, crafts, campfire programs, high ropes, biking, boating, fishing, swimming and any other events that camp life presents, our summer staff truly are the ones who make the camp magic happen. The summer job requires stamina, patience, a great sense of humor. The rewards camp staff can gain are immeasurable – raising self esteem , diversifying your range of skills, working with great folks from all over the world and gaining great job (and life) experience.
As a part of College Settlement’s summer staff, you will learn to nurture an environment that encourages cooperation, personal growth, and positive participation. You’ll be that mentor and guide for the campers, requiring you to use your skills to manage group dynamics, to motivate individuals, to set common goals and keep group on track to accomplish them.
Counselors work with their own group of 5-7 campers and can choose which age group they prefer to work with. Counselors live in cabins with their campers and 1-2 other staff members. The cabins are basic but comfortable with showers, electricity and wifi.
Other program staff (pool, ropes, bikes, etc.) lead their programs during their scheduled activity times then assist with all other aspects of our programs including taking on the counselor role. We are a vey collaborative wor environment where everyone pitches in.
ACTIVITIES: The basic camp day involves mornings spent working with “specialized” activities such as visiting the organic farm, high ropes or mountain biking. The afternoons are spent as “choice time” where the counselors offer activities that they would like offer. These activities vary depending upon the skills and interests of our counselor crew! We love the ever changing list of activities brought by the counselors – hurling, rugby, drama, weird and cool crafts, bug hunts, instrument making, cricket – who knows what each summer’s crew of counselors will bring.
Evenings are typically large group activities such as Capture the Flag, campfires, tent camp-outs, camp quizzes, before everyone heads back to cabins for showers and snacks. All staff help settle the kids down for the evening by reading or playing music, then some staff have a few hours off to go catch a movie or grab some food at a local eatery while their colleagues stay on bunk duty until curfew. Then the next day – we do it all again!
JOB REQUIREMENTS: The most important facet of being a great staff member is to be a positive and responsible team player. Our most successful staff members are hard working, self motivated people that are flexible, enthusiastic and prepared to dive in with any activities that we run through. Camp staff members must be positive role models who are patient, compassionate and genuinely committed with the welfare and development of young people. Also – folks that really like to have fun! Counselors must be at least 18 years old. Some jobs require applicants to be at least 21 years old (TAP, Pool, Nurse, Camper Advocate)
TRAINING: June 14th -20th Our Staff orientation is 7-10 days depending on which extra training sessions staff choose to attend. Orientation is a comprehensive training that includes behavior management, tips and tricks for working with kids, emergency trainings, protocols and procedures for the summer. It also is intended to be fun and rewarding for the staff, and created bonds that builds a strong team. SESSION DATES: June 21st – August 13th The camp sessions are 5 or 12 days, and we run 5 sessions per summer. Staff have weekends off between each session so there is ample opportunity to visit Philadelphia, New York, Washington D.C., the Pocono Mountains or the Jersey Shore for some rest and relaxation before the next session of campers arrive the following Monday.
SPRING and FALL Teacher Naturalists
Our spring and fall teacher naturalist (TN) staff work with mostly 4th-8th grade students who attend our 1-3 day programs. Leading small groups through team building and environmental education activities, our TNs Activities work with classroom teachers to make the field trip incredibly engaging, fun and full of activities the kids and teachers love, Each participating group plans their unique schedule, choosing from a handbook filled with over one hundred different lessons and activities. The TN crew of 6 run mst of the daily activities while school teachers provide overnight cabin supervision and additional teaching support.