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Ccusa

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Hey peoples,

Similar thing to Camp America - this one is Camp Counsellors USA and basically sent to a kiddies camp for 9 weeks to work and then choose to travel afterwards, over the summer months. Basically, anyone been on these sorts of things? I'm really excited and up for it and yet dreadfully nervous and scared at the same time. I can imagine it being an immense experience and funds will need to be gained before I go of course but...any feedback would be ace. Typing in camp america throws up loads 'America' related topics and a few vague threads on the the camps from a few years back. Anyway input great - thanks :D

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  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hey peoples,

    Similar thing to Camp America - this one is Camp Counsellors USA and basically sent to a kiddies camp for 9 weeks to work and then choose to travel afterwards, over the summer months. Basically, anyone been on these sorts of things? I'm really excited and up for it and yet dreadfully nervous and scared at the same time. I can imagine it being an immense experience and funds will need to be gained before I go of course but...any feedback would be ace. Typing in camp america throws up loads 'America' related topics and a few vague threads on the the camps from a few years back. Anyway input great - thanks :D

    Yeah I did CCUSA in 2003, it was brilliant. Worked in a camp in Southern California. Have you got any specific questions as I could go on for hours...
    :blush:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    PussyKatty wrote:
    Yeah I did CCUSA in 2003, it was brilliant. Worked in a camp in Southern California. Have you got any specific questions as I could go on for hours...
    :blush:

    Ooo god go on for hours!!

    It's all sorta new to me. What's it like living for 9 weeks with a bunch of kids, how did you find working and getting to know the other counsellors. What was the food like? How much luggage did you take with you?! Did you travel with the other counsellors afterwards? What new things did you learn? ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING! :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I loved it...it was exhausting though! Made a lot of friends, the American counsellors were so welcoming. Only got one night off a week but did lots like go to house parties, went out in LA, went to Mexico.

    It was a bit of a culture shock at first, I didn't understand what they were on about half the time and it can be quite cheesy but you embrace it after a while. Like we had this thing where you had to keep telling people "you are amazing" and they would reply "yes I am"
    :o:p

    I hardly took any luggage, just one holdall. Bought another bag while I was out there though. If you're gonna travel around after, just take a big rucksack. Take your skaggiest clothes! We had uniforms anyway..Western style! cowboy hat, western shirt, jeans and boots! Couldn't wear sleeveless tops.

    There's loads of different kinds of camps, mine was a working ranch so as well as children aged 7 to 17, I had to look after animals, ride horses, teach country dancing, drama, newspaper, all sorts. I helped goats give birth! and milked goats, and showed chickens :lol:

    I miss it so much, it was honestly the best summer ever and I wish I could do it again.

    The food....well I'm quite fussy, camp food wasn't that great, often I bought my own! They have some sick stuff like corn dogs :eek2: but you get used to it and there was always plenty!

    As for travel after, I went to LA, Vegas and New York. I was exhausted and wanted to get back home, would really have liked to do more travelling while I was there.
  • **helen****helen** Mod malarkist Posts: 9,235 Listening Ear
    PussyKatty wrote:
    Yeah I did CCUSA in 2003, it was brilliant. Worked in a camp in Southern California. Have you got any specific questions as I could go on for hours...
    :blush:

    Yeah me too (southern cali) - but in 2001. It was both a shocking and amazing experience. There were days I wanted to leave, but also days I couldn't believe my luck and like PussyKatty can bend peoples ears about it for hours! The type of camp you go to will probably really make a difference. Mine was for disadvantaged kids from Compton and Englewood LA (think Crash, boys in the hood and the Big Lebowski) and some of the situations I found myself in, and some of the kids experiences, feel completely dream like when I think of them now. I didn't do much travelling as I had friends on the east coast I wanted to visit, but it's definitely advisable to take extra doh if you would like to as the pay is pretty pants.

    Two of my fellow camp counsellors actually got married this year (to each other) which was fab. Friends at uni also went the same year as me, to New York, and they loved it too. Go for it - even the parts I didn't enjoy, I don't regret.

    ETA: luggage: I took a backpack - but you could get really filthy at my camp as it was pretty desert like and since there were few breaks, showers were a luxury. Therefore I pretty much wore the same few pairs of shorts and tees the whole summer and probably could have got a way with a smally rucksack! I was the fittest (in an exercies sense!) I've ever been by the end of it and needed to buy lots of belts to keep my baggy jeans up (this was the same for others too). ALso as PK says, take less and you can bring more back :thumb:
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Ooo god go on for hours!!

    It's all sorta new to me. What's it like living for 9 weeks with a bunch of kids, how did you find working and getting to know the other counsellors. What was the food like? How much luggage did you take with you?! Did you travel with the other counsellors afterwards? What new things did you learn? ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING! :D

    I'm jumpin in on your questions :D

    I didn't do CCUSA but me and Violette did Camp America this year which is pretty much the same thing!

    I think I can say its one of the hardest things I've ever done but also one of the most amazing. All the experiences you get out of it will definitely make up for any crap days you might have. We had a lot of gorgeous sunny weather and would spend part of every day swimming in the lake (which was gorgeous) or go kayaking, or canoeing. Things I've never ever done before!

    We basically spent 24/7 with the kids. We'd get like two hours off a day and one day a week we'd get a 6 hour break, which everyone loved. At our camp we also got every other weekend off between sessions.

    Everybodys camp is really different though. We met loads of people when we were travelling who got different time off to us. Camp is dirty. Personal hygiene goes out the window haha. We were on an all girls camp, and we didnt realise before we went but nearly all the American counsellors that were there were lesbians. haha!

    Me and Steph met lots of amazing people and went travelling with 4 of them afterwards so there were six of us altogether! As for luggage i definitely agree take less so you can bring more back. I'd take crappy cheap Primarky clothes for camp cos everything will get ruined then you can just throw them away and buy lots more after, cos the shopping is amaze and its basically half price :D

    like katy i could go on about this all day so i'll shut up now. hehe!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    This sounds really interesting!!

    What is it about in general? How did you get involved? What made you do it?
    Did you have to pay for expenses? What did you do with the children while you were there?
  • **helen****helen** Mod malarkist Posts: 9,235 Listening Ear
    ashlee wrote:
    This sounds really interesting!!

    What is it about in general? How did you get involved? What made you do it?
    Did you have to pay for expenses? What did you do with the children while you were there?

    Here you go ash:

    Camp America

    CCUSA

    I applied to both, but found it easier to get a placement with CCUSA based on availability in the end. The costs involved should all be explained - it's probably changed since I did it. You get food, accomodation (in my case a mattress outside a cabin in the weeks when we were at capacity!) and pay (pocket money pretty much) provided.

    ETA: One person's not so happy experience. I have to say, quite a lot of this rings true for me :p . However, I don't tend to regret things, and it was definitely more of a life/skills building experience rather than a damaging experience and there was a Lot of laughing. I also lived with some fellow counsellors when I first moved back to London (2 and a half years after meeting them) which is a sign of how well you bond with the people you meet.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    **Helen** wrote:
    ETA: One person's not so happy experience. I have to say, quite a lot of this rings true for me :p .

    haha iv just read that, it does ring true for me too :D but it definitely wasnt that bad. but the bug spray bit and the fact that the nearest supermarket was like an hour away :D
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    They always asked me if I knew Prince William (I told them I went clubbing with him every week) and presume that London is the UK and also kept thinking I was Australian. I found it quite amusing! They also thought my Brummy accent was 'cute'. ha ha.

    It wasn't all great: you have no personal space and get sand/dirt everywhere but I still think it was a great experience. Not for everyone, a couple of counsellors left (and you get charged fees for leaving before the end of season) but most people enjoyed it. I love kids though and enjoyed spending time with them talking to them and playing with them, you have to really embrace the whole camp thing and really let loose on your nights off.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    right, i really wanna either do work america or camp america this summer. in summer 2006 i worked in florida.

    i have a few reservations too... i keep thinking i will be stuck in the middle of no where with people i dont like with inbred hill billies in the woods waiting to eat me and the kids.

    i also hate snakes and spiders and am so scared id wake up with them all in my bed and all over my face!!

    So... should i apply for it?!!?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    what are the names of the summer camps that you worked at??

    thnaks
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    me and violette worked at camp chenoa in new hampshire. although as thats a an all girl camp, im guessing thats not really relevant to you :p
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