Maine has many forests, lakes and streams, and many Summer Camps. Camp Forest is a unique camp. Not only is our programming a full immersion experience in the forest, but also integrates wilderness education, interpersonal relationships and psycho-emotional healing in all the activities. Camp Forest also has the mission to offer this camp experience to low income children. Through the assistance of donors, finances have not been a barrier to camp attendance.
Children of parents limited by physical ailments, opiate addictions, or family tragedy are not uncommon. These children are not often given an opportunity to heal, or experience how the natural world can help them. Holding a frog in her hand and seeing its life, learning to hike and be strong to overcome physical restrictions, spending time playing and being happy brings the opportunities to confidently face life.
Camp Forest has provided a bit of stability for children who are forced to sleep in the vehicle with their single mother, or those with unstable home lives. Occasionally these children would run off and cry to a tree for a while, then return ready to face the world.
We have watched children who have problems with school, gain interest and a passion for learning at Camp Forest. We have watched children who would not listen, grow into amazing, attentive students.
Our low camper to staff ratio, un -walled free learning style, coyote teaching techniques, respect for all life, and peer mentoring is designed to find a child’s own inner passion for learning. We have successfully blended these children with high functioning children from healthy and skilled families.
If you want to help us make a difference in a child’s life, Step up and Do it.
Adam Stone, Senior Counselor
The 2014 summer at Camp Forest will start with the quintessential Maine Family Canoe Trip! Arrive at Camp Forest on Monday morning June 23and travel by car to the "put in" at Lobster Lake. Follow a piece of the Wabanaki Trail that Henry David Thoreau and his Penobscot guides traveled in 1853. Of Lobster Stream, Thoreau wrote, "We saw a pair of moose horns on the shore and I asked Joe if a moose had shed them; but he said there was a head attached to them and I knew that they did not shed their heads more than once in their lives."
Canoe slowly and camp along the banks. Join the West Branch and on to Chesuncook Lake while fishing, swimming and seeking the elusive Maine moose. Learn and practice primitive and canoe skills, study the Ecology of the river or work on the components of the Beaver or Eagle Badge. The journey will end at Chesuncook where Thoreau wrote, 'For my dessert, I helped myself to a large slice of the Chesuncook woods and took a hearty draught of its waters will all my senses. The woods were as fresh and full of vegetable life as a lichen in wet weather...."
Return to Camp Forest full of photos, stories and memories that will last a lifetime!
Your donations assist children in poverty who would otherwise be unable to experience the peace, unity and serenity of the Maine woods.
CAMP FOREST is preparing for the 2014 camping season. While snow blankets the Camp, the office is warm and busy. 2014 will feature a wonderful expedition from Lobster Lake to Chesuncook Lake along Wabanaki Trail in the Maine wilderness. This is a journey that Henry David Thoreau took in 1853. The Camp Forest expeditions are open to anyone from around the world! 2014 will also continue the special Day Camp EAGLE week and introduce BEAVER week for more advanced skills.
"Teach Less, Share More...The outdoors brings out a spontaneous enthusiasm in the child that you can skillfully direct toward learning." - Joseph Bherat Carrell, Sharing Nature with Children. Camp Forest provides this unplugged experience for children.
But one in every 8 Maine people lives below the Federal Poverty line. This means that no matter how important a camping experience is for children, no matter how much they will gain from it, the family cannot meet their basic needs never mind even a modest amount for camp.
The campership program for Camp Forest assists with partial and full camperships for children in poverty.
Thank you for your contribution making it possible for a child to attend Camp Forest.
Camp Forest builds character, resilience, and provides a safe place for children to learn, grow, experiment and find release.
Let me share a few quotations from parents in our annual evaluation.
“Camp Forest offers a camp experience unlike any other locally”
“I think Camp Forest is one of the very few really valuable experiences for children. I still consider it a miracle that I found you guys.”
“Camp Forest gives children the opportunities to fully experience a connection with nature. Children learn important skills for existing in the forest.”
From a camper: “When I whittled a spear so sharp that the kid who was helping me with my nebulizer wanted it (the spear)”
“Camp Forest brings a three continent exposure to rural Maine”
PLEASE consider gifting a CAMPERSHIP to Camp Forest for all your 7-17 year olds this holiday season.
Today was the last day for CAMP FOREST 2013. It is bittersweet. The campers worked hard to build shelters, make baskets, try their hand at a bow drill fire, swim, fish, track animals, carve, make coal burned spoon and so much more. The summer was full but now is time to return to school. To know that Camp Forest is the subject of many of those “what did you do this summer?” essays is venerating.
Your contributions made it possible for a low income child to experience the freedom and peace of the forest. The skills they learn assists them with their confidence and non-violent resolution skills ,both in the forest and in other social settings. Research has repeated the power of nature to reduce stress and ADHD symptoms.
As we wrap up the 2013 Summer, we begin plans for 2014. One of those plans can include you as we replenish and rebuild our campership fund.
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