Being a small camp, Camp Chikopi is a unique setting created by a group of boys living closely together. The counselors live in the cabins alongside the campers, and the boys learn by their example and achieve success because of the presence of these excellent role models. Camp Chikopi staff also demonstrate positive values by making healthy choices. Summer camp is where we learn to lead and follow, look for risks, keep ourselves safe, and challenge our comfort zone. It is where we learn how to be positive role models. This is why boys need summer camp more than ever.
Talk to any boy, young or old, about his summer camp, and instantly you will hear a camp-related story. Remember the boy who said, 'I love it at Camp Chikopi!' When asked why, he replied: 'I live in a huge city, at home I don't do much outside, but at camp, I am outdoors playing with so many friends, we play in the lake every day. I have learned sports I never heard of before.' So many stories are recalled because camp is about experiences with other people, "remember when we ......." Camp is where you can figure out who you are and what you want to become.
Every camper can recount the counselor or staff member he looked up to and remembers long after his camp days are over. The memory is usually full of the counselor's positive influence on his future and the decisions he made to get there. For example, the counselor who swam alongside him on the Chikopi mile when he wanted to give up, or the leader who never let the team quit on Rambo.
Bob often said, 'we become like the things we admire,' a guideline we have never forgotten. We continue to use it with camp staff every year. The boys take this perspective home and implement it in their daily lives.
Since 1920 the Camp Chikopi philosophy has been to give boys opportunities to build their self-confidence, grow their team leadership skills, and develop successful inter-dependence in a safe, fun, and nurturing environment. Camp Chikopi is an excellent experience for young boys and an investment their parents never regret. After all, today's campers are tomorrow's role models.
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