Camp counselors USA INTERNATIONAL WORKING ADVENTURES BE MORE THAN JUST A TOURIST
An American Camping Tradition As children, many of us have enjoyed some form of camping experience, from sleeping in a tent in the yard to camping with our family on holidays. However, the American summer camp experience takes camping to an entirely new level. The American Summer Camp tradition started in 1861, and today over 12,000 summer camps cater to more than 10 million children. CCUSA works with nearly 1000 different camps that generally exist in beautiful, rural areas all over the USA. At camps you will find cabins, a dining hall, sports fields, tennis and basketball courts, crafts and performing arts areas, a lake or pool, climbing walls or ropes courses, and camp fire areas. Many even have horse facilities, go-carts and a whole lot more! These camps serve children of all economic backgrounds, religious faiths and abilities. All camps have one goal in common: to provide a safe, rewarding and positive experience for their campers.
For more info and to apply visit www.ccusa.com
CCUSA Offers Tremendous Value: ✔✔ A confirmed placement prior to heading to the USA! ✔✔ A one-on-one placement service. We make every effort to place you at a CCUSA-approved camp that fits your personality, interests and skills. You have CCUSA’s reputation, support and seal of approval behind you! ✔✔ A straightforward and affordable program. ✔✔ An easy application process and informal one-on-one question and answer interview. ✔✔ An extensive range of jobs and camps; we work with nearly 1000 top-rated camps. ✔✔ Access to great flight prices through our preferred travel agent. ✔✔ Accommodation, all meals and laundry service included at camp for no additional cost. ✔✔ CCUSA office and local area representatives across the country, giving you the local service you need. ✔✔ Completion Certificate to add to your resume once you finish your camp assignment. ✔✔ Excellent wages – earn up to US$2,240 for 9 weeks at camp. ✔✔ Experience with an excellent reputation among many of the best US summer camps. We have been trusted to assist them with their staffing needs for over 24 years. ✔✔ Free Information Meetings held in cities and universities near you. Through videos and discussions with our staff and past participants, you will discover what working, playing and travelling around the USA is really like and have all your questions answered about camp life and our program. ✔✔ Gain lifelong skills, independence, confidence and maturity that will broaden your horizons and enhance your future career choices. ✔✔ Highly informative Pre-Departure Orientation with CCUSA staff and former participants to help you prepare for your camp adventure, including how to complete required Social Security Paperwork and information about taxes. ✔✔ Optional Meet & Greet service in New York, offering accommodation, advice and information. ✔✔ Online CCUSA International Staff Handbook (full of practical information, games and tips to ease you into camp life) and the online Travel-Wise Guide (offering great advice on travel tips, places to see, where to stay and how to explore the USA after camp). ✔✔ Paid SEVIS fee. Your camp covers the mandatory US$35 fee for the SEVIS visa system. ✔✔ Support and advice every step of the way from CCUSA staff who have experienced working and travelling overseas. You also gain access to your online Personal Support Website, "Footprints". ✔✔ Tax Service to assist you with applying for tax refunds. ✔✔ The rare opportunity to meet people from different countries and make friends to last a lifetime. Do it now, while you still can! ✔✔ Time to travel in the USA after camp. Your visa includes a thirty day grace period after completing the camp season that allows you to see all the US has to offer! ✔✔ Travel insurance that exceeds US government regulations (includes 3 months accident, sickness, baggage and medical evacuation coverage at no additional cost). You can extend your insurance through your local CCUSA office. ✔✔ Twenty-four hour emergency assistance hotline once in the USA. ✔✔ US mobile phones and SIM cards at exclusive CCUSA discounted prices. ✔✔ Visa Sponsorship and DS2019 Certificate of Eligibility required to apply for the J-1 Camp Counselor or Work and Travel Exchange Visitor Visa, plus assistance with visa processing and interviewing in your home country. CCUSA has an excellent reputation with the US Consulate to help in processing your visa.
What will I earn? As a first time participant, you have the opportunity to earn up to US$2,240 for a nine week period. Check below for what pocket money you can expect to earn over the summer. Category
Increase Your Salary (add to the categories to the left)
Counselors at Special Needs camps
Age 19 and 20
Age 21 and older
If you have a American Camp Association approved Lifeguard certification**
If you have a American Camp Association approved Swim Instructor certification**
Returnee* Support Staff (any age)
minimum of US$2,000 US$1,880
If you have a combination of approved Lifeguard and Swim Instructor certifications** US$200
If you work more than nine weeks, your camp will pay you US$30 for each additional day as a Camp Counselor and US$40 for each additional day as Support Staff. * See “Return to Summer Camp” section. ** Visit http://www.acacamps.org/accreditation/aquaticcert.php to see if your certifications are approved.
Your Role as Support Staff A popular and affordable choice for you as a full-time student, Support Staff members enjoy all the wonderful benefits of working at a summer camp (such as free meals and accommodation) without living or working directly with the campers. The backbone of camp, Support Staff help to keep camp operations running smoothly and efficiently. Your job at camp can range from preparing meals and cleaning the kitchen, to doing office work, maintenance and grounds work. To qualify, U.S. regulations require that you are currently a full-time student. During the day The hours you work as Support Staff are not as long as that of a Camp Counselor. Depending on the job for which you are hired, you might have free time in the morning, in the afternoon, and in the evening after you finish work. As Support Staff, many camps do encourage you to get involved with all the camp activities and campers. This will not only give you a better overall camp experience, but will also help you improve your English. Accommodation Support Staff generally have their own housing (cabins, dormitories or platform tents) with co-workers and do not share a cabin with children. Food Support staff will either sit at their own table or eat before or after the campers. Staff and campers eat in what is normally called the Dining Hall. Depending on your camp, you get your food from a “buffet” or it is served “family style” (in which platters of food are bought to your table). As support staff we strongly urge you to get involved with the chants and singing in the dinning hall, as this will only add to your camp experience.
We all worked in the kitchen – washing dishes, preparing food and serving – a total 10 hours per day including two half hour breaks. We had one free day so we can do whatever we want." Justa, Rasa and Olga
A Typical Day During the summer, you are entitled to a minimum of 24 hours off per week, of which 12 hours must be continuous during daylight hours. Support Staff are not allowed to work more than 10 hours in any one full day and/or 60 hours in one full week. You will be expected to follow strict camp rules for campers and staff, such as no smoking, no drinking of alcoholic beverages on camp, a nightly curfew, etc. All in all, the joy of summer camp more than offsets the hard work. A cheerful, hardworking attitude is a must!
Support Staff Skills
Example of Support Staff Schedule 6:15 Breakfast preparation 8:00 Breakfast 8:30 Clean up and preliminary lunch preparation 10:00 Free time 11:15 Lunch preparation 12:00 Lunch 12:30 Clean up and preliminary dinner preparation 14:00 Free time 17:00 Dinner preparation 18:15 Dinner 18:45 Clean up 19:30 Off for the day 23:00 Lights out (Kitchen staff example)
CLEANING General Cleaner Housekeeper Janitor Sanitation Laundry Rubbish Removal
KITCHEN Chef Assistant Chef Dishwashing Food Server Waiter/Waitress Kitchen Assistant Food Prep
OFFICE SKILLS Accounting Camp Store/Canteen Filing Secretary Telephone Word Processing/Data Entry/Computers
MAINTENANCE Building Repairs Driver Grounds Work Handyman Mowing Lawns Night Watchman Painting Stable Work
Your Role as a Camp Counselor As a leader, role model, friend, instructor, big brother or sister, cheerleader and hero to campers ages 7 - 16, your primary responsibility is overall supervision. You are there to ensure a child’s well-being and safety, and to make their camp experience more fun and rewarding. As a Counselor, you will be with campers 24 hours a day. Counselors make sure the campers attend and participate in day and evening activities, clean cabins, eat meals, and even get to sleep at night. During the Day Different camps have different staff requirements, and you will be hired either as an Activity Counselor or an All-round/General Counselor. In either role, you will lead or assist campers of all ages in one or more activities. Your willingness to try everything and anything will be a great asset. Activity Counselor You will teach a specific skill or work in a specific Activity Area (such as Land Sports, Waterfront, Outdoor Adventure, Performing Arts or Arts & Crafts). This will be based on your application’s description of your skill level, ability, experience and certifications. All-round/General Counselor If you have good general knowledge and experience in a variety of skills or activities, a camp may hire you as an All-round/General Counselor. You will need to list as many skills and activities as you can on your application form.
Camp Counselors Skills
You do not need to be an Olympic athlete! The good news is that in most cases, the skills and knowledge you have obtained through a hobby, by playing on local teams, in a club with friends, or at university will be enough experience to teach or assist in an activity at camp. All of your skills should be included in your application. Remember – this is a job you are applying for, so you need to fully describe your skills and experiences, and you need to be flexible and willing to help out wherever you are needed.
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A Typical Day
Additional Training - Improve your chances of getting that camp job! By gaining more skills and experience in any of the Activity Counselor Skills listed below, or by enrolling in a refresher course in your home country, you increase your chances of being hired as an Activity Counselor. Also make sure that any certification, qualification or degree you currently hold in any of the below activities will still be current during your time at camp. Accommodation Most counselors will be living in a cabin or platform tent with a co-counselor and 8 to 10 campers of similar age. Sometimes cabins have their own bathroom, but it is also common for several cabins to share a large centralized bath and shower facility. Food Staff and campers eat in what is normally called the Dining Hall. Depending on your camp, you get your food from a “buffet” or it is served “family style” (in which platters of food are brought to your table). In most cases you will eat with your campers and co-counselors. The dining hall is a fun and lively part of camp, often with lots of talking, chants and singing.
"My Summer was amazing!!!! I had the best experience of my life and I have signed my contract to return next year and I'll probably be taking my brother with me too." Vlad
Outdoor Activities ffing Abseiling/Rappelling Terrain Vehicles rovides All Backpacking Cycling personal BMXCamping also Go-carts Hiking Horseback Riding English st care Horseback Riding Western Low/High Ropes ncerned Mountain Biking Orienteering Outdoor Cooking experience Rock Climbing Scouting ." Trekking Trip Leader mp Agawak
Performing Arts Choreography Circus Costume/Set Design Culinary Arts Dance Drama Fashion/Clothing Design Guitar Magic Music Piano Radio Amateurs Singing Stage Direction Theater/Stage Manager Video Production
Though camp is definitely a lot of fun, it's not a holiday for staff. Except for your time off, you'll spend 24 hours a day with an active group of children. Total working hours may be more than a typical day’s work at most other jobs. You must adapt to the lack of privacy and to the basic level of accommodation. You will be expected to follow strict camp rules for campers and staff; these generally include no smoking, no drinking of alcoholic beverages on camp and a nightly curfew. All in all, the joy of summer camp more than offsets the hard work. A cheerful, hardworking attitude is a must! Example of Camp Counselor Schedule 7:00 Reveille (wake up, get dressed, maybe a swim) 7:30 Flag raising (the camp assembles to begin the day) 7:45 Breakfast 8:45 Cabin inspection 9:00 Activity period (Land Sports or Outdoor Adventure) 10:30 Activity period (Waterfront or Performing Arts) 12:30 Lunch 13:30 Rest hour (write letters, quiet activities in the cabins) 14:30 Activity period (Arts and Crafts or Land Sports) 16:00 Activity period (Outdoor Adventure or Waterfront) 17:30 Free time (Counselors supervise) 18:15 Dinner 19:15 Flag lowering 19:30 Evening activity (All-camp Games, Campfire, Show night) 21:30 Lights out (younger campers) 22:30 Lights out (older campers) Examples of Evening Program Activities Capture the Flag Talent Show International Night Campfires Dance/Disco Bingo/Casino Night Movie Night Gold Rush Night Hikes Skits Concerts Cookouts Cabin Nights
Waterfront Boat Driving Canoeing Crew Rowing Diving Fishing Jet Ski/Sea Doo/ Personal Watercraft Kayaking Kneeboarding Lifeguard Surf/Pool Rowing Sailing Scuba Diving Surfing Swimming Wakeboarding Waterskiing Whitewater Kayaking Whitewater Rafting Windsurfing
Degree/Certification* American Red Cross (ARC) Boat License Child Care Community Services Counseling CPR/First Aid Disability Studies Lifeguard Nursing Occupational Therapy Outdoor Education Personal Training Physical Education Religious Studies Social Work Special Education Sport Coach Sports Science Swim Instructor Teaching Water Safety Instructor (WSI) Welfare Studies
Specialty Skills Disability Practical Experience Farm Animal Care Farming
* Must be currently studying or have a degree/certificate.
Camp Types Every camp in America is unique; they vary depending on location, environment, activities, facilities and campers. All camps with which CCUSA works are carefully reviewed and match our high standards and the standards of the American Camp Association (ACA). You will be required to choose at least four of these camp types. Check out “Types of Camps” under the Camp Counselors USA program at www.ccusa.com for full camp descriptions.
1. TRADITIONAL PROGRAM CAMPS
• Independent/Privately owed camps and Agency (such as YMCA) camps. • Co-ed or single-gender camps (often with a brother/sister camp nearby). • Serve campers from middle to high-income families, with many campers returning year after year. • Hire a mix of Activity and All-round Counselors and Support Staff.
2. SPECIALTY PROGRAM CAMPS • Mainly Traditional Camps, these aim to help teach, develop and expand any specific skill that campers may already have or wish to learn. • Some include both children and their parents. • Co-ed or single-gender camps (often with a brother/sister camp nearby). • Hire a large percentage of mix of Activity Counselors and Support Staff and some Activity All-round Counselors.
3. CAMPS SERVING UNDERPRIVILEGED AND INNER-CITY CHILDREN
• Social, government and charitable agencies such as the Salvation Army, Youth and Family Services and Fresh Air Fund oversee and help to fund these camps. • Welcome Campers of many different ethnic, social and racial backgrounds attend these. • Co-ed camps that service low- to middleincome families. • Offer a wide variety of traditional activities, such as Outdoor Adventure, Waterfront, Land Sports, Arts & Crafts, and Performing Arts. • Hire a mix of Activity and All-round Counselors and Support Staff.
4. SPECIAL NEEDS CAMPS
• Prior experience working with children and adults with Special Needs is not necessary. • Operated and funded by non-profit agencies or private organizations that serve children and/or adult campers who need extra attention because of physical and/or developmental challenges/disabilities. • Special Needs camps focus on either one or a range of disabilities. • Counselors help campers participate in a wide range of traditional camp activities, while helping them with social/interpersonal skills and their daily living tasks (eating, dressing, showering, etc.). • Hire a large percentage of mix of All-round Counselors and Support Staff and some Activity Counselors.
5. GIRL SCOUT CAMPS
• Scouting experience is not necessary. • Girls-only camps that generally serve middle income families. • Offer a wide variety of traditional activities, such as Outdoor Adventure, Waterfront, Land Sports, Arts & Crafts, and Performing Arts. • Hire a mix of Activity and All-round Counselors and Support Staff.
6. CAMPS FOR CAMPERS WITH SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS
• Prior experience working with children and adults with Special Requirements is not necessary. • Serve campers with specific medical conditions or impairments, such as emotional disorders, learning disabilities (including ADD and ADHD), diabetes, terminal illnesses, hearing/ sight impairment and weight control. • Activities are similar to those at traditional camps but are adapted to the ability of the campers. • Many campers will take medication and the camps usually have full-time nursing support. • Hire a mix of Activity and All-round Counselors and Support Staff.
7. RELIGIOUS CAMPS
• Christian (Catholic, Anglican, etc.) or Jewish faith camps ranging from conservative to liberal philosophies. • Co-ed camps that service low, middle and high-income families of different faiths. • Offer a wide variety of traditional activities, such as Outdoor Adventure, Waterfront, Land Sports, Arts & Crafts, and Performing Arts. • Counselors with a strong religious belief system will have the opportunity to lead devotionals and Bible or Torah studies. • Hire a mix of Activity and All-round Counselors and Support Staff.
8. DAY CAMPS
• Can be part of a Traditional camp or operate at a city park, beach, church hall or community centre. • Co-ed camp mainly operating Monday to Friday, 8 am to 6 pm with some overnight trips and weekend activities. • Camps arrange housing and meals for international staff at the Traditional camp or with host families. • Offer a wide variety of traditional activities, such as Outdoor Adventure, Waterfront, Land Sports, Arts & Crafts, and Performing Arts. • Hire a mix of Activity and All-round Counselors and Support Staff.
Apply Today if You: 4 4 4 4
Enjoy working with or being around children; Are outgoing, cheerful, adaptable, flexible, and reliable; Are prepared to work for at least nine weeks from May/June to August; Will be at least 18 years old by June 1st 2010.
If you meet the above requirements and are ready for a once in a lifetime experience, then CCUSA’s Camp Counselors USA program is for you! Visit www.ccusa.com to apply. After we receive your application, we will contact you to schedule an interview.
Returning to Summer Camp Let CCUSA help you get there! We can accommodate anyone and everyone’s return to their previous summer camp, even if you have not used CCUSA before! Even though you have been to camp before, there are still a few things you need from your visa sponsor, and CCUSA offers the best overall “Returnee”* package and process: 1. Contact your camp and let them know you want to return; 2. Negotiate your own position, contract and salary; 3. Complete the easy CCUSA Returnee application, pay your discounted Returnee fee, and send us your invitation to return to camp and signed Program Agreement. Own Arranger Returnee: You arrange all your own transport to and from camp. Earn a minimum of US$2,000. Returning on the program but you want to attend a different camp? This is certainly possible. You will need additional documentation and letters of recommendation from your previous camp director. Please contact your CCUSA country office for details and instructions on how to apply. * Returnee is someone returning to the same camp.
Time to Travel After Camp The last day of camp is also the start of a new adventure, as you are able to travel around the USA! You have 30 days of travel time to explore the U.S. after your camp assignment successfully finishes. The friends you have made at camp will become your travel companions and the CCUSA Travel Handbook your guide! Past participants recommend these “don't miss” destinations: • Boston – the home of the American Revolution has lots to offer with great food, shopping and clubs • New York City – the Big Apple has it all – the Empire State Building, Broadway, Central Park, Statue of Liberty and much, much more! • Miami Beach – the beaches, the clubs, the Latin music • Las Vegas – Need we say more? • Grand Canyon National Park – AMAZING!! Not to be missed • San Francisco – leave your heart behind in the City by the Bay as you walk across the Golden Gate Bridge, or hang out in Chinatown • Los Angeles – Hollywood, Universal Studios, Venice Beach, Santa Monica – this says it all • PLUS everything in between.
"Thanks CCUSA. Pete has had a fantastic experience at camp. Thank you for the efficient structure that has made it easier for such experiences to be part of many young lives." Participant's Parent 10
To find a CCUSA office near you visit: