Our Philosophy

Camp Riverlea provides a structured program where children can continue to develop as fully self-actualizing people while learning and perfecting new skills, broadening their range of personal experiences and learning how to live more effectively in their world. We emphasize interpersonal relationships, greater knowledge and appreciation of the world of nature, and skill achievement judged by individual progress.

Camp Riverlea’s goals are for each camper to:

1. Participate in a planned program of various activities suitable to his/her own age group and planned with an objective of skill improvement and an increase in knowledge.


2. Participate in camp activities with all age groups to learn camp songs, share experiences, get to know as many other campers as possible and feel himself/herself to be an important part of the total camp “family”.


3. Be taught by skilled teachers who understand the needs and interests of the age group and the particular requirements of the area being taught.


4. Feel safe at camp.  To accomplish this objective, each child should understand the safety rules and know that everyone at camp enforces these rules. They are always under the direct supervision of staff personnel who know, understand, and enforce all safety regulations.


5. Enjoy camp. Camp should be a happy place where individuals feel important. Campers are treated as individuals and all camp staff should carefully attend to their special needs. A hug, a band-aid, help in finding a lost sock, explaining a puzzlement…all these are small ways that a staff member can help many times a day to help a camper feel important.


6. Have an opportunity, under skilled leadership, to increase his/her skill in archery, arts and crafts, movement skills and athletics, nature, swimming, tennis, music, drama, gardening, golf and small craft (kayak/canoeing).


7. Participate in an overnight camping experience or an extended-day experience, for example, eating outside, sleeping outside, participating in a campfire program, singing around the campfire, and a sense of independence from home, and a sharing experience of camp as an   adventure in the out-of-doors.


8. Practice good manners and acceptable behaviors, obey rules and live at camp in an atmosphere of concern and consideration for others.  Staff should emphasize positive values, cooperation, helpfulness, sharing, love and kindness.  These can be especially emphasized at meal times, in dressing rooms, and in large group activities.


9. Experience formal and informal group activities such as free play in and out-of-doors, and “all camp” activities such as relays, all-camp games, adventure activities, holiday celebrations, etc.

A camp tradition for Durham area children

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