The vision for Refreshed Family Camp is clear: Give every foster and adoptive family a “win” together.
Refreshed Family Camp is an experience where the love of Jesus is clear. Connect with God around the campfire or through a conversation with a friend. See God’s care in the epic sunsets overlooking Port Susan Bay. Learn about God’s heart through experiential-based teaching.
Play hard at camp. Swim, zip line, canoe, shoot arrows, compete in field games, or just take a hike on the miles of trails. There’s no shortage of activities to do. Bring your bike and ride to your heart’s content on the 278 acres of God’s creation at Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center.
Rest among friends. Every family at Refreshed Family Camp understands the uniqueness of foster and adoptive family dynamics. Find time to just kick back in a community of people who “get it.” We are all in this together! There is something incredibly encouraging by being with people who understand.
This summer’s theme is “Unshakeable Kingdom.” Allen Denver, Carrie Blaske, and I will be sharing from our own journey about the amazing things God is teaching us. We are all foster and adoptive parents who understand renewed hope under God, who is unshakable. We are excited to share with you!
If you are a foster or adoptive family, join us for Refreshed Family Camp, July 28-31, 2019.
As we pray and prepare, we are making the following promises to you:
- Jesus is being lifted up as Lord and Savior.
- Families will have opportunities to experience a “win” together.
- Recreation, rest, and renewal will be available to everyone.
We can’t wait to see you this year!
Ed McDowell, Executive Director
Warm Beach Camp & Conference Center
Research shows kids are healthier, learn better, and form lasting friendships when they spend an extended amount of time outside away from technology.
Study after study has shown when children are out in nature regularly they are more mentally and physically healthy1. The combination of physical activity and being outdoors is proven to be important to mental, physical, and environmental health. Nature is viewed by scientists and researchers as a fundamental health resource.
Being out in nature helps people recover from stress and anxiety much faster than suburban and urban settings2. Children are more stressed and anxious now than ever before. According to the CDC, the number of children diagnosed with anxiety, ages six to 17, has increased over the last decade3. Anxiety also increases with age4. The pre-teen years are especially vulnerable to this, as they are the years anxiety grows the most according to the CDC’s study.
There are many actions parents can take to counteract the massive influx of mental health issues which stem from a technology centered world. Perhaps the easiest and cheapest is simply allowing children to get out and into nature. Studies have indicated that a walk in the park can ease the mind and boost the concentration of a child with ADHD5.
Allowing children to go to summer camp is also a viable option to increase their mental health and unplug them from their electronic devices. Not only does summer camp provide physical exercise in a natural environment, but research has shown that summer camp can improve kids’ social and relational skills6. Summer camp connects children in person, not online, which helps them feel more comfortable with their identity.
The benefits of summer camp are supported by research and are applicable remedies to many of the mental and physical health issues of children today. Immersion in nature must continue after their week at camp. Children need continued exposure to the social, natural, and physical elements that the camp environment provides.
Kids thrive outside. The change to increased exposure to outdoor life can start safely at summer camp.
Carl Kulper, Communications Specialist
Warm Beach Camp and Conference Center
1Pretty, J. (2004). How nature contributes to mental and physical health. Spirituality and Health International, 5(2), 68-78.
2Ulrich, R. S., Simons, R. F., Losito, B. D., Fiorito, E., Miles, M. A., & Zelson, M. (1991). Stress recovery during exposure to natural and urban environments. Journal of environmental psychology, 11(3), 201-230.
3Data and Statistics on Children's Mental Health. (2019, April 19). Retrieved May 22, 2019, from https://www.cdc.gov/childrensmentalhealth/data.html
5Faber Taylor, A., & Kuo, F. E. (2009). Children with attention deficits concentrate better after walk in the park. Journal of attention disorders, 12(5), 402-409.
6Hanna, N. A., & Berndt, T. J. (1995). Relations between friendship, group acceptance, and evaluations of summer camp. The Journal of Early Adolescence, 15(4), 456-475.
Some of the most important things in life cannot be bought, like time and love. If you want to measure the quality of life, measure the quality and depth of relationships. One of the most treasured relationships are between parents and kids. Both parents and kids desire transparent, loving relationships. In a world saturated with distractions, we are faced with bigger challenges than ever to maintain flourishing relationships. Somebody once said, “Love is spelled, time.”
Consider the following acronym for your parent kid relationships.
T–IME together on purpose!
If we truly desire healthy, loving relationships with our kids then we must have some quality time together.
This time can have many forms but the function is to share experiences and create lasting memories!
It should be flexible and fun. Simply be together and listen to each other. The Bible tells us “to make the most of our time” and when we invest our time in our kids we can experience some of the greatest joy in life!
I-NVEST in the desires of their heart. To do this we must know our kids’ hearts. Drop by drop, let your child know you believe in them. This is one of the most powerful things a parent can do especially if it is genuine and consistent. When a kid is supported with genuine belief from the parent, deeper relationships and character development can grow. Jesus describes love in 1st Corinthians 13 first with the adjective patient! Good relationships take time and lots of love, so be patient!
M-AKE sure you enjoy the simplest things together like: laughing, playing, singing, watching the beauty of creation, being grateful, sitting down for iced tea, going on spontaneous trips, writing silly cards and notes to each other, etc.
E-NTER each other’s world with Grace because healthy relationships are not all about us. When your kid says, “come here and try this” go and try it.
Entering into each other’s worlds can help our relationships grow. It says, “I heard you, I respect you, I love you enough to do this even though it may not be my favorite thing.”
The Lord has brilliantly put different personalities (our kids) in our lives to help us grow and be more understanding and forgiving.
“Therefore, be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.”
Speaker for 2019 Dad & Me Weekend
In order to talk about the benefits of working at a summer camp, we must start by debunking some myths people believe about the job.
Myth #1: It’s not a “real” job.
Truth: Working at a summer camp is mentally and physically demanding. Camp counselors are no longer only responsible for the well-being of themselves, but the well-being of students ranging from 6 years old - 18 years old. Many summer staff work 16 hour days, six days a week, not to mention the middle of the night responsibilities. If this isn’t a real job, I am not sure what is.
Myth #2: It doesn’t add anything valuable to my resume.
Truth: Working at camp is a resume builder. The following, can often be added to a resume after working at summer camp:
- Works well with a diverse group of people
- Able to lead and follow and know when each are appropriate
- Positive in the face of difficulty
- Holds the attention of an antsy audience
- Ability to think and problem solve “outside-the-box”
- Guide other people through tough situations
- Able to manage personal needs and the needs of others simultaneously
This is just a start, there are so many more things that could be added. Any employer who looks at these kills will be impressed. More than ever before, employers are valuing “camp counselor” on resumes.
Myth #3: I have to do an internship for school and camp won’t fulfill that requirement.
Truth: There are a wide range of opportunities available at camp. Many internships requiring management of staff, interpersonal relationships, supervision of groups, and curriculum/program planning, can be accommodated at camp. All you have to do is ask for what you need, and many camps and educational institution will support and help you fulfill your requirements.
Myth #4: I won’t make enough money.
Truth: You’re right. You could be making more money, but because of the skills and certifications you can receive working at camp, this job is worthwhile. Many camps provide housing and meals so all the money you make in the summer can be saved.
Myth #5: I could be doing something worthwhile.
Truth: Being a positive influence in the lives of hundreds of kids for a summer is an incredibly purposeful and worthwhile job.
Camp is a beneficial place to grow personally and professionally as a future employee in the workplace whether you are going into the non-profit sector, education, or the corporate world. Take the risk! It is worth it and will continue to benefit you for the rest of your life.
Youth Program Manager
Warm Beach Camp