First Time Camper

Partnering with Parents

Camp gives kids the activities and the environment they need to be the best people they can be. Camp Kanata helps children, teens and young people become the best version of themselves.

Everyone who comes through our gates has unique needs. We are a better Camp when we take time to find out what those needs are, build empathy and understanding, and respond to individuals appropriately. We are an inclusive and welcoming place dedicated to serving families and campers from diverse cultures, backgrounds, faiths, journeys and perspectives. We are also experts with a 69-year history of balancing the needs of individual campers and the needs of our overall and collective Camp community during the summer. When required, we take time to understand the unique needs of families and campers attending and those considering coming to Camp to build empathy and work with them appropriately.  

Your child’s success at Camp is our number one priority; therefore, if you have a request or there are specific things about your child that we need to be aware of - anxiety, depression, mood disorders, past trauma, family dynamic circumstances, ADHD, sense of self journeys, etc., please contact us so we can ensure the best possible experience for your child and our entire Camp community. 

First Time Camper Pro Tips

If your child is attending Camp Kanata overnight camp for the first time, we can help. We want campers to be safe and happy and for them to be part of Camp Kanata.

The best way to have a successful first session of overnight or weekend camp is to plan and set expectations with your child before and during camp.

Leading up to camp:

  • Set goals with your camper.  Whether it is canoeing for the first time or making a new friend, setting goals with your camper will have something to look forward to and aim for at camp.
  • Get to know our staff. We are proud to have well-trained counselors and leadership at Camp Kanata to ensure your child is safe and well cared for. We encourage you to read our bios and talk to your camper’s counselor at drop-off.

During camp:

  • Send letters or emails. Communicate with your first-time camper by sending a letter or a Kanatagram. Kanatagrams are delivered every day. You can drop a letter in the mail a few days before camp starts, so your camper receives it on the first or second day.
  • Trust Kanata staff. Our staff is well-trained in nurturing and caring for first-time campers and those who may be homesick. Your camper is in good hands. When campers are homesick, Camp Kanata staff help them work through it. We make this a positive experience and it leads to greater self-confidence. However, if your child is really struggling after a few days, we will call you. 

A Day in the Life at Camp Kanata