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Camp Squeah FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

You’ll likely have many questions about our location, policies, facilities, activities, camps, payments, food and health and safety. Check out our Frequently Asked Questions below for answers to your questions.

General Questions

Where is Squeah located?

Address:
#4-27915 Trans-Canada Hwy
Hope, BC V0X 1L3

Approximate Distances:
16 km north of Hope, BC
70 km east of Chilliwack, BC
170 km east of Vancouver, BC

Directions:
When traveling from the Lower Mainland:
Travel east towards Hope on the Trans-Canada Highway (Hwy 1).
Exit #170 at Hope to remain on Hwy 1.
Continue 16 kms past Hope. Watch for our sign 1 km beyond the Dogwood Truck Stop.

Anticipate:
2 hour drive from Vancouver
1 hour drive from Abbotsford
15 minute drive from Hope

When traveling south-west on the Trans-Canada Highway:
Camp Squeah is located 8 km beyond Yale.

Visit our Location page to view map.

Why should I send my child to camp?

A summer camp experience is an excellent choice for children, teenagers and adults for a number of reasons.

  1. We believe exposure to the natural environment helps children become comfortable in a natural setting, helps them find joy and excitement in exploring the diversity of the environment around them, assists in a child’s development, reduces stress and boredom and increases a child’s love of the outdoors, physical fitness and creativity.
  2. We believe participating in the community of the summer camp week amongst a caring summer staff and other campers helps to produce in children a respect for others, a healthy sense of belonging within a loving group, an understanding of the uniqueness of themselves as individuals always within the context of a greater community and a willingness to contribute positively to the well-being of the community.
  3. We believe spending time in a safe and caring camp location gives children, particularly those who live in highly urbanized environments, freedom to run and play without the concern of the unknown or the fear of people they don’t know.
  4. We believe that participating in camp programs away from the home can help children develop a healthy sense of independence and interdependence.
  5. We believe that exposure to young adults who genuinely love and care for children for extended periods of time fosters a sense of what a positive role model is, an example of quality character they want to emulate and have themselves and inspires them to connect with others who have these qualities.
  6. We believe that God wants and hopes that we will love others in every way possible and with every bit of available energy we’ve been given. This joy and peace and love flow from our relationship/s with Jesus and therefore everything we do is in loving interest of the camper – everything from our safety standards, our customer service, our cleanliness, our diligence in ensuring adherence to policy, our choice of activities, how we train our staff, how we care for the environment, our use and service of food, our consumption footprint, how we play with children, the list goes on ….

In a paragraph, “We believe every young person should have the opportunity to experience camping in God’s awe-inspiring wilderness. We share with campers, through a Christian perspective, how camp can provide a space for children to discover themselves in a safe and loving environment and that this helps them become confident, mature and fun loving people.”

Obviously, we are biased. WE LOVE CAMP! But don’t just take our word for it. Talk to another child or family who has attended or had children attend Camp Squeah. Let them share with you the value we so strongly believe in. For more professional research on the affects of summer camp upon Canadian children, consider reading the published study carried out by the University of Waterloo called the Canadian Summer Camp Research Project.

How do I apply to work at Squeah?

Summer and Seasonal Positions
Visit the Leadership page for more info on summer and seasonal positions, or contact:

Tim Larson, Program Director
ph: 1-800-380-2267, ext. 105
or 604-869-5353
email: tim@squeah.com

Full-Time Staff Positions
Rob Tiessen, Executive Director
ph: 1-800-380-2267, ext. 102
or 604-869-5353
email: rob@squeah.com

What does Squeah mean and how do you pronounce it?

Camp Squeah, in the local Salish dialect, alludes to ‘Place of Refuge’. We recognize that life is busy, full of significant activities and events. We also realize that there are appropriate times to withdraw from the pace of life.

Squeah is pronounced like ‘Skwee-ah’!

Where can I buy Squeah apparel?

You can purchase Squeah Shirts, Hoodies, Hats, Water Bottles, coffee mugs, coffee and tea at our camp. Our store and canteen are open on the last day of each camp. We accept cash, cheque, Master Card, Visa or Money Order. Note that $3 from every purchase of our coffee goes towards our campership initiative to assist families with the cost of camp for children.

What is Squeah’s cancellation policy?

In the event of a cancellation, the registration amount, less a $50 administration fee will be refunded. Cancellations within two weeks of the camp session start date are not eligible for a refund, except in situations of accident or illness.

Is there financial aid available?

Yes! Our Campership Fund is available to families requiring financial assistance. Families may apply for a campership visiting our Online Registration and Info page, printing an application and sending it to us.

What kind of activities does Camp Squeah offer?

Visit our Activities page to view our list of activities offered for summer camps! Summer crafts are different every year. Singing, exploration of the Christian faith and values, field/wide games and drama are activities we offer exclusive to summer camp. We hope soon to offer beginner guitar lessons for children at summer camp as well.

Does Squeah provide any form of transportation to camp?

No, unfortunately we are not set up to provide rides from the valley to the camp, all campers must find their own way. We recommend that you contact any local churches and they can potentially post the need for a ride to their congregation.

Please Note: Because of privacy reasons, we cannot give names of other families in your area who may also be coming to the same camp.

What do I do if we leave important items behind after the program has ended?

After a camp has closed we collect any lost and found we find and put it in a safe location. Items Squeah considers valuable that we have contact information for will be returned via a phone call shortly after the closing program or the next day (items like medications or valuables). Clothing, shoes, books, flashlights and other things or items not labelled or identifiable are held at Squeah, some of it is laundered and organized, until, usually, the end of October. If these items are not retrieved, those that can are given away to good will organizations for the benefit of others.

How is the Christian faith integrated into the camper’s daily experience?

Camp Squeah’s staff are people who love Jesus and live to share this love with others. Camp Squeah staff do not manipulate or coerce in any way, shape or form, any child or person who participates in summer programs. We share the Christian faith, from the Mennonite perspective, through short discussions daily on the biblical story of God’s love, through some of our music, our short skits which share the story of Jesus in the bible through themed vignettes and, most importantly, through our love and care of campers in every moment of every day that campers are in our care.

Who owns/operates Camp Squeah?

Camp Squeah is owned and operated by a Christian Church denomination called the Mennonite Church British Columbia. We are the only camp currently owned and operated in BC by this denomination. Camp Squeah’s full time staff (9 of us) work as a well knit team lead by an Executive Director who is answerable to a board of directors who in turn are accountable to the constituents that make up the Mennonite Church BC.

Is Camp Squeah affiliated with any organization?

Yes! Camp Squeah is an accredited member of the British Columbia Camping Association. The BCCA sets common safety practice standards that are adhered to by many camps to improve and value the safety of children in all camp programming. Because we are BCCA members we are de facto members of the Canadian Camping Association.

Due to our governing church’s denomination, we have association with the Mennonite Camping Association as well.

Camp Squeah is also a member of the Fellowship of Christian Camps or FCC. This organization exists to support and encourage Christian camping through the province of British Columbia.

These organizations have websites you can visit to learn more about them: BCCA   FCC  CCA  MCA

Program Related Questions

What activities are offered in Squeah's summer program?

Camp Squeah offers a wide range of activities to give campers a breadth of experience, the chance to learn new skills, try something that would be a positive challenge for them, and create an environment that is fun and provides the relational space for them to grow in positive relationship with their cabin mates, their counselor, other staff members and campers and God.

Campers participate in activities primarily in a cabin group and occasionally with more than one cabin. Most other activities are done as a whole camp community and just a few activities the campers get to choose themselves. Campers may work together in a cabin  group to decide collectively the order of the activities offered.

Set activities offered throughout the day include: Archery, Artificial Rock Climbing and bouldering, the Low Ropes Course, Hiking, Nature Lore (Botanical Adventures), exploration of the Christian faith, Orienteering,Canoeing, Crafts (vary from year to year and from camp to camp), Swimming (outdoor/heated pool), field games, Bushcrafts (wilderness survival as preparation for their overnighter experience), Drama, anOvernighter and Guitar (Guitar is intended to be implemented in the summer 2014 program).

Squeah’s activity rotation and policy insists that all campers and cabins receive the opportunity to experience all activities in a week. Camp Squeah staff operate with a ‘challenge by choice’ attitude that encourages campers to take healthy and positive risks with the goal of growing mature and more developed in their confidence, physical skills, social skills and trust. No activities are ever forced upon a child and yet it is expected that campers will attend all activities to be properly supervised and have the greatest opportunity of a positive experience, particularly with their cabin mates.

The whole camp will experience a variety of activities together including most meals (except those on their overnighter they have with their cabin), morning singing and story time, skits the staff share as part of our summer curriculum, the receiving of mail for the day, Rec (wide games with the whole camp on the field or property), Chapel (held at Chapel in the Sky in the evening if weather is permitting) and a Night Game if the campers are old enough to do this safely.

Campers get to choose individual activities once a day after dinner in an activity called Campers Choice. These activities may be similar to the other daily ones but often are different and are put on by staff that are free then to supervise and teach them. Activity options that are popular are: board games, chess, field games (soccer or volleyball usually), hockey in the gym, swimming, utilizing the games room in the lodge, etc.

MUD and other LT programs are here for longer periods of time and run on different schedules and programming. To get an accurate and detailed idea of those activities, please contact the LT or MUD Directors. During the summer e-mail: LT@squeah.com.

How many staff are in a cabin with campers per night?

There are always 2 staff per cabin per night. In most cases, when our camps are quite full, there is the primary counselor and a designated support staff person with that cabin all week. The support staff person will have had adequate training for this role as well. This support staff person also hikes and participates in the overnighter experience with that cabin in the week. For weeks that are less full, counselors are doubled up and two will be with the cabins for the duration of the camp.

Which camps include an overnight campout experience?

All 5 day on site camps include an overnighter experience. Discoverers and Explorers and Daytrippers camps do not include an overnighter. LT and MUD programs include overnighter experiences and JLT and SLT include extended 2 or 3 day overnighters off site quite often. Family Camp program offers overnighter experiences for children with our staff or the opportunity for families to have an overnighter together on their own. This happens only on one night in the Family Camp week.

Can I communicate with my child while the camp program is running?

For much the same reasons that parents do not visit campers in the week, communication is also quite limited. It’s expected that the parents will not contact their children directly through the week and campers do not have the option of phoning e-mailing, texting or any other form of communication to home. The exceptions to this include emergencies or pre-arranged conversations for extenuating circumstances (e.g.: a close family member is ill at home and the parent feels it important the child is kept in close communication because of it).

Parents may e-mail or snail mail their campers when they wish. The e-mail address to use is:campermail@squeah.com. Please put your child’s name (first and last) and their cabin name (if you can remember it) in the subject line. Our designated staff prints and confidentially hands these letters out to the campers once a day just after lunch around 1:15pm.

Can I visit my child during the camp program?

The camping tradition, Christian summer camp tradition and Squeah’s programs all originate from an understanding that concentrated time away from our home comforts, within a caring community, can be a rich and important part of a child’s life. Stepping away from home and parents for a short time can help a child to be comfortable meeting new friends, understand how a larger community of trusting people is important in life and learn to naturally gain a sense of healthy independence.

Because of this value it is understood that parents do not visit their children while the camp program is operating. If a parent is feeling anxious about the separation or seeks a means to know more of how their child is doing, contact the Program Director directly to discuss ways to relieve this concern. Parents who show up to see their children will sometimes cause that child to desire to leave their program prematurely or may even cause other campers to feel homesick. Feel free to contact the Program Director about this concern – we often talk to parents about the uniqueness of the camper’s experience in this way.

Can my child request a cabinmate?

Camp is an exciting place for children to experience independence safely. In some cases though, a child may want to be with one other person whom they know. If this is the case, please indicate the request on the registration form. We will try to accommodate the request where space is available, honouring one MUTUAL cabin mate request per camper. Both campers must have made the request prior to registration day and requests are NOT guaranteed.

How many campers are in a cabin?

Normally, we have four to six campers in a cabin with two staff members in the cabins.

What qualifications do your counsellors have?

Our summer staff go through a thorough application process which includes an application, references, criminal record check and interview. They also go through 7 days of training which includes some basic first aid, wilderness outtripping experience, activity instruction, child care skills, and spiritual discipleship.
Please contact us if you have more questions regarding our Summer Staff team:

Tim Larson, Program Director
ph: 1-800-380-2267, ext. 105
or 604-869-5353
email: tim@squeah.com

What should I pack to camp?

Visit our Packing List page.

Can I pick up my child early from the camp program?

Those people who have been authorized by Camp Squeah to pick up campers may do so whenever they require it. Camp Squeah would prefer to have campers remain for the duration of the program but we understand this is not always possible. Families may have other trips planned and need to remove a child earlier than preferred.

If you wish to do this please confirm with the office as many days prior as possible your intention to pick the camper up and the details of the time so we can adequately prepare the camper for leaving their cabin and program.

People who wish to pick up campers who have not been authorized to do so will not be able to and will be denied that ability until the Legal Guardian has given permission. This may include other close family members. We appreciate your understanding regarding this policy. Camp Squeah staff are well trained to protect and take care of the children who attend summer camps and this policy is a means to ensure the safety and care of campers while on site.

When can I arrive for the closing program at the end of camp?

The final day of camp, for all our week long camps and Explorers, ends with supper and after that campers head to their cabins to spend some final time with their counselors, cabin mates and pack their gear. Parents are encouraged to come anytime after supper (supper is from 5:15pm – 6:00pm). Parents do not need to receive their children right away; they may prefer to arrive, walk the grounds or talk to some of the staff. Summer staff will be preparing for the closing program at this time which begins at 7:30pm at the sound of the bell. When the bell goes all parents and family members are encouraged to enter the lodge for the 20 minute closing program.

Anytime between 6 and 7:30pm is typical for parents to arrive.

An exception to this pick up time is for Discoverers Camp. Discoverers ends on a Saturday and closing program for this camp is at 11:00am.

Also, our MUD, LT and Go Beyond programs pick up and closing program times will be communicated specifically to all the parents prior to the ending of those programs. Often these closing programs are at a similar time to our week long camps but sometimes there are exceptions, depending on the program.

For what reasons would a camper be asked to leave camp?

Camp Squeah’s mission is to be a place of refuge for campers of all ages to grow, build relationships and be nurtured. It’s incredibly rare that a camper would be asked to leave the camp as we desire all campers to have an excellent and life giving time. On very rare occasions, circumstances suggest otherwise for a camper’s experience. Reasons for dismissal are stated on the medical form footer that are signed by legal guardians who commit their children to our care. This item states: “Camp Squeah reserves the right to dismiss any camper who constitutes a hazard to the safety and rights of others (or themselves), or demonstrates that s/he has rejected the reasonable controls and supervision of the camp staff.”

Can I leave money with my child for the week to purchase items from the camp store?

Squeah’s sellable items are not open for sale during the camper week, nor are items from our canteen (Tuck Shop or Pop & Candy store). These items are open for purchase only when parents have arrived at the closing program with their children. We would also like to avoid the possibility of lost or stolen monies while a child is on site.

Exceptions to this may be our Leadership Training Programs and Go Beyond Senior Teen Adventure camps that are longer in duration and would allow times and places where campers may need or want to have some money for snacks or other items.

No money is required to be sent along with any camper for any summer camp program.

Food Related Questions

What kind of food is served during the summer program?

At Camp Squeah we try to serve healthy, camper-friendly food. All of our meals have a vegetable and/or fruit option. And we try to use fresh ingredients as much as possible, minimizing processed foods. The more we do from scratch, the more control we have over what goes into our meals. Some examples of what we serve are homemade pizza, Mexican meals (nachos and build-your-own burritos and tacos), roast chicken with mashed potatoes & steamed vegetables, and pasta with a choice of cream, meat, and/or tomato sauces. If you would like a full menu for the camp your child is attending, please contact the Food Services Manager (604-869-5353, x.103 or foodservices@squeah.com.

Does Squeah provide food for people with dietary constraints or allergies?

The Camp Squeah kitchen has years of experience with catering to people with food allergies. Typically we have a designated staff prepare the food allergy-related foods on separate cooking utensils to avoid cross-contamination. Each year we get more experience under our belt as people come to camp with multiple allergies. We can easily deal with lactose/dairy-free, gluten-free (and Celiac), peanut allergies (our kitchen and dining hall are as peanut-free as we can make them), egg-free, etc. If you have multiple food allergies, please contact the Food Services Manager (604-869-5353, x.103 or foodservices@squeah.com) so we can create a meal plan for your stay with us. In some cases we may ask you to bring you’re own specialty products to bring some gaps in our menu plan.

What if my child is a picky eater?

We offer a good selection at all our meals. Rarely if ever will a child not have options to choose from at each meal. If you are concerned about a particularly picky eater in your house that is coming to Camp Squeah, please contact the Food Services Manager (604-869-5353, x.103 or foodservices@squeah.com). We would be happy to discuss your child’s situation and work with you to come up with a game plan for their stay with us.

My child has severe (anaphylactic) reactions to peanuts (or anything else). What does Camp Squeah have in place to keep my child safe?

Our kitchen and dining hall is as peanut-free as we can make it. We do not use peanuts or peanut-related products, neither do we use nuts in our food preparation. The “nuttiest” we get is sunflower seeds. In the case of a camper being anaphylactic with other foods, we have a designated staff prepare the food allergy-related foods on separate cooking utensils to avoid cross-contamination. Our Food Services Manager would be happy to talk to you about any concerns you may have (604-869-5353, x.103 or foodservices@squeah.com.

What does Camp Squeah have in place to ensure food safety in their kitchen?

The full-time Food ServicesManager and the Head Chef both have Level 2 FoodSafe. They directly supervise our kitchen crews. Our seasonal Sous Chefs are required to have Level 1 FoodSafe certification. Our Summer Kitchen Staff are all required to have FoodSafe Level 1 certification in order to work in our kitchen. In addition, we have a very good proactive relationship with our Fraser Health EHO (food inspector). Our inspection results can be found online at http://www.healthspace.ca/fha/food. In the upper left side of the page, type in “Camp Squeah” in the search box, then click on Camp Squeah Kitchen.

Who can attend Squeah's summer camp programs?

Any person:

 who is of the required age (as of Dec. 31st of the calendar year the program is running).

whose behaviour, medical, physical or other needs do not compromise: the safety of the camper, the ability of our summer staff team to care for the camper, the enjoyment, safety and experience of other campers or the overall experience of the camper registered.

who (in the case of our SLT, JLT and MUD programs) have completed the application and reference forms in time to be considered a participant, have undergone an interview with the director of the program applied for and have been approved by that director as suitable for the program and that the program is suitable for the camper.

Safety/Management Related Questions

In the event of an emergency, what will happen to ensure my child's safety?

Camp Squeah has in place a detailed set of emergency procedures that our full time and summer staff are drilled and prepared to implement to carry out. While we create programs in such a way as to mitigate as much risk as possible, we understand that ‘accidents happen’ and we take the health and care of each child of the utmost importance.

Basic procedure for emergencies are to remove the children/child from danger quickly and manage the camp as a whole through the process, contact emergency agencies immediately, administer first aid if required (we always have trained staff with Occupational First Aid level 2 on site during the summer), contact the emergency contacts for the child(ren) involved to inform them of the situation and if necessary, transport the child(ren) to a medical facility for further treatment. The Legal Guardian for a child involved in an emergency will always be contacted.

How does Camp Squeah mitigate the possibility of bullying at summer camp?

Camp Squeah takes the welfare, experience and safety of each camper very seriously. Our summer staff team are instructed in how to prevent bullying in the summer time during their week long staff training in June. Naturally, we have set in place some policy and procedure to prevent this:

the cabin counselor should always be with their campers which lessens the potentially of bullying. The exception to this is their one hour off in the day and at this time bunch of staff are monitoring groups of campers during organized activities.

Counselors (cabin leaders) are trained to build cabin unity and to break down cliques and groups of kids who are exclusive to others. This role of the cabin leader is also made much easier when campers follow the cabin mate request guideline of only one mutual request per camper. This limits the number of children who coming knowing others so campers who come without a cabin mate requested are not singled out by default.

The entire summer camp staff team is dedicated to fostering a community of care and respect for the entire week. Our staff commit themselves for the summer to this way of life and model it for the campers. At the beginning of every week we share with the campers 5 golden guidelines. They are: Have fun, wash your hands, wear a hat, sunscreen and drink water, stick with your counselor and respect one another, Camp Squeah property, the property of others and themselves. This last guideline helps us communicate to campers the environment of care we foster to create a safe environment.

My child has significant behavioural/medical needs. Will Camp Squeah be able to accommodate him/her?

At Camp Squeah we believe every child is unique and worth loving and caring for. While we desire to accept any camper who would wish to experience camp at Squeah, sometimes this process needs to be more thoughtful for the well being of child and their experience as well as the program and the staff charged to implement it. Our number 1 priority is being certain we can properly and appropriately care for the camper. If this is compromised in any way do to the unique needs of the child, a conversation with the directors of Squeah is required to see if adjustments can be made to allow the child a wholesome camping experience.

If your child has significant needs that require extra attention (even if they are relatively commonplace in society) please  contact our office and Program Director prior to registration. We want each child to be given the support needed for a safe and caring and positive camp experience.

Please keep in mind that the majority of our staff are excellent young adults who find joy and fulfillment in serving others and loving children but are not professional medical staff or counselors. They are good hearted people who are well trained to take care of children with average needs for their age.

 

Some examples of needs to communicate to the camp about include: moderate to severe asthma, ADD or ADHD, FASD, OCD, Autism, Augsbergers, life threatening or alterning dietary constraints or allergies, emotional trauma or fear, epilepsy (whether recently diagnosed or not), bed wetting, any anaphylactic reactions, inability to understand or speak English, developmental delay, chronic diseases, tourettes, acute homesickness, visual or auditory impairment, Down’s syndrome, unusually aggressive or angry behaviour, etc.

Some of these needs we are well equipped and trained to assist with. For instance, we have clear policy and good responses to bed wetting that assist the child to feel accepted, keep their sleeping bag cleaned and not ashamed at all. For other needs we require the parents to clearly disclose the level of need required, such as with Autism. some autistic children are very high functioning and need only a few helpful tips to assist them with their experience. Others are so very highly needy that it is unfair to ask a young adult with 5 other children to manage them. It’s just not viable or safe to do so. Some needs necessitate a discussion to determine if Squeah’s programming is a safe and proper fit for the child. Down’s syndrome children will most likely require a Personal Support Worker (PSW) to accompany the child to allow them the freedom to be here through the week and in a cabin. This has been the case here in the past.

For your help and convenience we have forms you are free to download and use to help us understand the unique needs of your child and whether or not Squeah would be a good safe camp experience for them. Feel free to download the Camp Support Plan Document  and the Camper Support Plan Strategy. Alternatively you may simply fill out, on a sheet of paper, any extra information that would be helpful for the counselor to know when working with your child.

What is Squeah's policy in regards to releasing the campers to parents/guardians at the end of camp?

Camp Squeah puts the safety of each camper at the top of its priority list. One of the ways to do so is to have clear and working policy and procedure regarding picking up campers at the end of the week. Please have patience with our office and staff in clearing the release of your child if the person picking up a child is not to the legal guardian. Permission MUST be obtained from the legal guardian to release the child to anyone other than themselves. This permission is obtained when the child is dropped off to the counselor at the beginning of the week. If the parent/guardian leaves quickly without confirming who will pick up the child, Squeah will phone the legal guarding to confirm.

We cannot release a child without the legal guardian’s permission. We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause but hope you understand the intent to keep your children safe at all times, particularly when there are many other adults arriving and leaving on closing day.

Is Camp Squeah accredited with any organization?

Yes! Camp Squeah is an accredited member of the British Columbia Camping Association. The BCCA sets common safety practice standards that are adhered to by many camps to improve and value the safety of children in all camp programming. Because we are BCCA members we are de facto members of the Canadian Camping Association.

BCCA standards include best practices around facilities, first aid and medical care/response, any and all camp related activities (i.e.: Archery, Belaying/rock climbing, swimming, boating, out-tripping, horseback riding, challenge courses, etc.), transportation, administration and staffing.

BCCA standards are available through the association. Feel free to view their website here: BCCA

Registration & Payment Related Questions

How do I register?

Visit the Registration and Info page for details on how to register. You can register online, over the phone or ask for and receive our brochure in the mail or e-mail.

When is payment due?

Payment is due one month before the camp starts. If payment cannot be made by then, please contact us and we will work with you to make other arrangements.

Why can I only ask for one cabin-mate for my child?

Policy: Camp Squeah created the cabin-mate request policy in answer to the growing demand of parents’ desire to partner their child with another camper attending the same camp they are familiar with. As summer camping has continued, we find more parents prefer to have their child attend camp with a friend or relative.

Cabin-mate benefits: There are obvious benefits to a child coming with a familiar person:  a social security to help overcome fears of attending a camp they’ve never been to before, someone they can confide in and communicate with easily at the beginning of camp.

Benefits to signing up individually: We believe that a caring camp community for a week in the summer can greatly help a child become confident socially and to grow to develop a healthy independence and interdependence. Children who are placed in cabins with children they don’t know are taught lovingly to be inclusive, open-minded, respectful, encouraging, friendly, to engage in activity together, work through differences positively, work together as a team and to see themselves as an invaluable person within the framework of caring community.

Cabin-mate drawbacks: The potential drawback to having known cabin-mates can be unhealthy attachment to the cabin-mate that excludes other children, particularly the other campers and their counselor. The more campers who are assigned to the same cabin who know each other, the more difficult Camp Squeah summer staff find it to create cabin unity and inclusion among all campers in that cabin. A very negative socially exclusive experience for a camper(s) who comes on their own and are in a cabin with many campers who already know each other has been known to happen. This causes extra work and stress on the counselor and staff and has the potential to compromise the experience of other campers.

Reasons for mutual requesting: For these reasons Camp Squeah strongly holds to a position of allowing only one MUTUAL cabin-mate request per camper. If a camper requests another, but the other does not wish to be partnered with the request, we will honour the camper who wishes not to be with the other camper. If parents do not confirm the cabin-mate requests mutually, we will not assume that they should be placed in the same cabin, as it is not always the desire of the parents and camper to reciprocate the request.

Registration day:We appreciate your understanding and patience, particularly on registration day, if your camper has not been assigned to a camper they desired to be with. We may be able to move campers on opening day but this is difficult and affects the experience of other campers who may then be displaced.

Opportunities for campers to interact in the program: If a camper is in a cabin separate from another camper they know, they will still have many opportunities to be together. At all meals the children are mixed up and do not sit in cabin groups (except for mini camps) and we have a variety of all camp activities that the whole camp does together: morning singing/story time, Rec on the field, Afternoon skit and mail give out, Chapel in the evening, Thursday night skit night, Friday afternoon wide game, etc. In addition, some activities allow for two cabins to attend together: swimming, canoeing, low ropes course, bushcrafts, crafts, drama, nature lore. In the evening for an hour all campers have the opportunity to pick an activity of their choice individually and any campers could, at this time choose to spend that hour together apart from their cabin.

How early/late can I arrive to register my child?

Opening day/registration day is a busy one as we prepare the camp and our staff for your arrival. Parents are welcome to arrive earlier than the designated registration time (5:00pm for most camps). During the extra time you might wish to have dinner in Hope (Joe’s restaurant is a favourite for fine dining and is owned/operated by Squeah’s former Head Chef, Hiro Takeda), have take out dinner and eat at our picnic tables, take a tour of the camp grounds with your child(ren) and just enjoy the scenery before camp begins. Registration does not open and Camp Squeah will not register/assume supervision of campers before 5:00pm (3:00pm for Discoverers). Our counselors are preparing their cabins and our Registrar is preparing her administrative details prior to the start time. Feel free to ask questions of our staff prior to registration opening time.

Parents may arrive any time in the designated registration time – typically from 5:00 – 6:30pm. If you arrive later than that, go straight to the office to find the registrar or program staff to register your child for the camp. If an emergency or other circumstance hinders your arrival, simply phone the camp line to let us know when you might be able to arrive.

How late can I register my child?

Provided there is still room/space in the camp requested, you can attempt to register your child up until around the Thursday before the camp begins (most camps begin on a Sunday). If you arrive to camp hoping to register your child in person without having checked to see if there’s room, there is a risk that we will not have space for your child. Trailblazers & Trekkers seem to be the camps that fill consistently. But if in doubt, always just give us a call or e-mail our registrar at registrar@squeah.com, as we will always do what we can to allow a child the opportunity to come to camp.

How can I receive financial aid to help get my child to camp?

Camp Squeah strongly believes that every child deserves the opportunity to have a summer camp experience. With this in mind, we have put in place a means by which parents, who have not the financial means to afford the camp costs, can pay for their camp fees. Our Campership Fund is designated for this very purpose. If camp fee costs are prohibitive for your family, simply download our Campership Application form, fill it out and return it to us by e-mail, fax or mail. We will respond with our decision regarding your application promptly.

Our Campership Fund is made possible by people like you! If you have funds you’d love to donate to such a wonderful cause, please get in touch with our office to determine the different ways you can donate to this great initiative.

There are other organizations that also seek to support families in sending children to Camp Squeah. UGM (Union Gospel Mission) which have offices in Vancouver and Mission, holds Squeah applications and you can work through them to come to family camp or sending your child to camp. The Burnaby Camping Bureau also has Squeah brochures available and funds to support families. Angel Tree is an organization that works to support families who have a loved one incarcerated and therefore circumstantially are limited in getting children to camp. Camp Squeah has a partnership with Angel Tree as well, to support such families in sending children to camp

I find the online application process too difficult. What should I do?

If you have attempted to register your child through our online system but have had some difficulties, there are a few things you can try. If are having specific interface issues (buttons won’t work or something to do with the site itself) there is a toll free number on each page to get in touch with our online system provider to solve such issues. If you are struggling with any other issues to do with the process, give our Registrar, Cyndi Nickerson, a call or e-mail: 604 869 5353 ext. 203 or registrar@squeah.com. She will be more than happy to try and mitigate your frustration.

Alternatively, you can always register over the phone through our office or by picking up our registration form that comes with our brochures. You can download this small registration form for either family camp or onsite kids camps from our registration page as well.

Please note that you will not see programs or camps for children who do not fit the age category the camp is created for. If you would like to put a camper who is older or younger than suggested for your camp, you will need to discuss this with our Program Director. Space may be limited for certain camps so availability for such requests is dependent on how much room there is for campers of the suggested age limit.

Can I register the same child for more than one camp in a summer?

Squeah’s summer camps are developed in such a way as to assume that each child will receive one opportunity to come to summer camp. The curriculum and program in our onsite camps change very little except in regards to our approach in connecting with different age groups.

We encourage parents to send their child to just one on site camp that is of very similar program. We will not receive a second registration for the same camper if the camp is quite full as we want registration spots available for other children to have an opportunity to attend camp as well.

Camps wherein different experiences and programs can be had without much compromise would be our Go Beyond Teen Adventure Camps, Family Camp and our Onsite Camps. For instance, if you were a family of 4 and had a 16 year old and 14 year old in your family, you could attend family camp together, send the 14 year old  teenager to our onsite Voyageurs camp and perhaps the 16 year old would prefer to take in one of our Go Beyond Adventure Teen camps themselves for a different experience. This is quite acceptable as the programs are quite different.

Why is there an interview and application for the leadership training programs?

Our JLT, SLT and MUD programs are specifically designed to develop a teenager’s leadership qualities and overall maturity in understanding Children’s Camp ministry, Camp Squeah’s unique program and responsibilities and the Christian faith. Because of the greater expectation and responsibility associated with the programs, the Director for SLT and JLT (called our LT Director) and our MUD Director will receive applications and references to be considered for the program. Once the applicants have submitted references and have had an interview, at some point after the interview, the applicant will be notified if they will be accepted to the program. It’s our desire to be sure that applicants are a good fit for the program and that the program is a good fit for the applicant. This is not always the case.

Some expectations for these programs include an understanding of greater responsibility (direct work with children/campers with supervision, activity facilitation, maintenance and chore duty), physical endurance (JLT and SLT programs include some extended overnighter experience) and spiritual maturity (JLT and MUD programs will explore the Christian faith and it is expected that the applicant will be at least open to these discussions and understand that Camp Squeah’s programs and staff operate drawing on our faith in Jesus. SLT applicants are expected to have an active and living relationship with Jesus).

Why can I not pay for leadership training programs before the interview process?

As noted in the above question, JLT, SLT and MUD applicants are only accepted to their program following an interview and the consideration of the Director for that program. Once the applicant has been accepted to the program by that director, the parent or paying individual for that camper will be notified that they may send payment for the program.

I don't want my child to be in a cabin with another camper. Can I request this?

If you know that there may be a camper registered to the same session/camp as your child whom you believe poses a significant risk to your child’s emotional well-being at camp, we welcome this information and, after consideration are assured the risk is high, can ensure that they will not be assigned to the same cabin.

Camp Squeah does not honour such requests based on race, ethnicity, family spiritual values or any other criteria that would be contrary to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms or Camp Squeah’s policy.

Can I request a particular counselor for my child?

Yes, you can, though Camp Squeah will reserve the right to assign the child to a counselor whom we feel will best care for the child. Considerations including the child’s specific behavioural or medical needs, cabin-mate requests,
the counselor’s physical and emotional well-being, other campers assigned to that same cabin, etc., are all considered when assigning campers.

Please note that at Camp Squeah we have a pretty good summer staff return rate but that most staff will not return after, on average 2 years, so we may not be able to assign your camper to the counselor requested. We put much time and effort into screening and training all our staff and trust them all as dedicated and loving young people who will all provide a most excellent experience for your child.

How can I make payments for summer programs?

Payments can be made by cash, cheque, MasterCard, Visa or Money Order.

Online and Phone Payments can be made by Visa or MasterCard. Contact our Summer Registrar with any questions:

Cyndi Nickerson, Summer Registrar
or 1-800-380-2267, ext. 203
email: registrar@squeah.com

Contact Staff Questions

How do I get a hold of the Leadership Training Director?

The LT and MUD Director’s are hired sometime in the early spring of each year but often do not arrive on site at Camp Squeah until either April, May or June of the year. Until such time, the LT Director’s may be contacted through our office who can pass on specific questions or contact information as needed. Once the directors have arrived on site (usually later in the spring – June) they can be reached then by e-mail at: LT@squeah.com. This is also true through the summer until our summer programs end.

How do I get a hold of the Go Beyond Adventure Teen Camp Director?

The Go Beyond Director is hired sometime in the early spring of each year but often does not arrive on site at Camp Squeah until either April, May or June of the year. Until such time, the Go Beyond Director may be contacted through our office who can pass on specific questions or contact information as needed. Once the director has arrived on site (usually later in the spring – June) they can be reached then by e-mail at:gobeyond@squeah.com. This is also true through the summer until our summer programs end.


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