For over 80 years,
the Bell family has operated camps for young people. We believe that a big
part of a child's education occurs outside the classroom. We also believe
that young people need roots as well as wings, and that neither is much good
without the other. Self-esteem, independent thinking, initiative, the ability
to function in a group other than one's own family, life time skills, lifelong
friends... all are very important factors in the educational, maturing process.
These are the very things a good camp should help foster. Being a citizen
in a camp community instead of a child in a home can be a valuable and gratifying
goal is to encourage growth and foster education through adventure…
We think that
adventure is a powerful medium for growth. But we know that children are ready
for varying degrees of exposure at different ages and maturity levels. Adventure
to an eight year old might be a first, carefully supervised riding lesson
at a walk... or to a 15 year old, a five day canoeing trip down a fastwater
river. Camp is a place for learning things, making friends, and expanding
horizons. Because most things are more fun, more rewarding and safer if we
do them well, the emphasis is on learning skills and enjoying being able to
do things well.
a program that is structured, but not regimented…
The program is
non-regimented. We try to allow as much freedom as a child can wisely use.
She will have the opportunity for choice, along with guidance in making those
choices. She will set goals... but the goals can be changed. The camp atmosphere
is a safe place to take some risks, fail, and try again. It is a place to
practice making decisions, where the consequences of a bad decision are temporary
and not calamitous.
that is non-competitive.
people, and especially kids, are more likely to try new things if they are
not worried about comparisons to others, the program is noncompetitive. We
don't know or care who the best rider, or the fastest swimmer, is. We work
on accomplishing things (like a difficult climb or a challenging river) together,
rather than competitively.
parents are able to find the right camp, they will find a strong partner in
the educational process. A good camp experience is much more than a "vacation"...
it is an investment in your child's future. Because a good camp is devoted
full-time to children, and because it offers a very low staff-to-camper ratio
(3 1/2 to 1 at Green Cove) it can provide role models, time and opportunities
that are difficult, if not impossible, to duplicate elsewhere.
We are not the
right spot for everyone -- no one place is. But if you are with us this far,
we invite you to look closer. Check out these pages, send for a video and
brochure, give us a call, talk to others who have been here. We welcome contact
with interested parents and campers, and look forward to sharing our experiences