Assistant Counselor applications (ages 16-18) – Howard County Conservancy Camps

Program Description:  The mission of The Howard County Conservancy’s Summer Nature Camp is to nurture appreciation and respect for the natural world, to increase awareness of environmental issues and to instill a sense of stewardship.  Junior Staff members assist campers and Senior Staff members in recreational activities, daily programs, and open play times.  Junior Staff members gain leadership skills, practice effective communication, and learn about team building, behavior management, health and safety, and more.  Throughout the summer, Junior Staff members utilize their talents and abilities to make a positive and unforgettable contribution to the campers.

Positions Available:

Assistant Counselors ages 16-18.  Registration fees are waived.  Session Availability is flexible.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Stay with assigned unit to assist the campers and Senior Staff as needed.
  • Encourage campers to participate meaningfully in activities.
  • Lead campers in games, songs, and free play activities daily.
  • Lead elective activities based on interests, skills and hobbies.  Examples include Engineering Design Challenges, Silly Sports, Nature Art, Stories in a Round, Water or Field Games, Orienteering, Juggling and more.

Expectations:  Camp is outdoors unless there is severe weather.  Campers and staff hike and explore the landscape on a daily basis.  Junior Staff members assist campers with meaningful participation during nature games, activities and study.  Junior Staff serve as role models to campers.

Time Commitment:

  • Training:  Sunday, June 2 2019, 9:30 am – 12:00 pm. Training will be held concurrently at Belmont in Elkridge and Mt. Pleasant in Woodstock.
  • Dates:  Monday-Friday in one-week sessions between June 24 – August 23, 2019
  • Junior Staff hours: 8:30-4:00 for Junior Counselors ages 13-15; 9:30-5:30 for Assistant Counselors ages 16-18.
    Junior Staff is invited to arrive during Before Care (beginning at 8am) or stay through After Care (until 5:30 pm) depending on the availability of their transportation.

Application Process:  Complete the Junior Counselor Application online.  Spaces are limited and competitive. Payment is due at the time of registration.  Registration (health and emergency forms) is available online for Campers and Staff members.

Professional Staff:  The Howard County Conservancy Nature Camp’s staffers are college students or professionals currently working with children.  All staff are required to attend an extensive pre-camp training, become First-Aid/CPR certified and undergo a criminal background fingerprint check.

Camp License:  We comply with the regulations and are certified by the State of Maryland Department of Health.  We are inspected annually; our Youth Camp Certificate in on display.

Fees & Payment:  There is a $50.00 fee for all Junior Counselors to be paid at the time of online registration.  You will have the option to pay by check or credit card.  Fees are waived for Assistant Counselors ages 16-18.  Junior Staff are unpaid volunteers.

Refunds:  Once payment is made, it is non-refundable unless the Junior Staff member suffers a medical emergency, attested to by a physician, which keeps the child from attending.  In this circumstance, a refund will be given after documentation is received.  Refunds will not be given for failure to attend, absence or sick days or if a Junior Staff member is dismissed due to behavioral problems.  All authorized refunds will be processed online using the Conservancy’s vendor, Blue Snap.  Refunds will be sent to the payment method on file.  Check and cash refunds or refunds made after 60 days may require online transfer directly to your bank account.

Health Forms and Medication:  Junior Staff members cannot attend camp unless the Health Form is completed in full prior to June 1st.  These forms are a part of the online registration process.  Due to the nature of activities please contact the Camp Director to make arrangements for and discuss any special needs.  The Howard County Conservancy does not provide medication.  If your child requires medication during the day, Junior Staff members can self-administer required non-prescription and prescription medicine.  A Medication Form and all documentation must be completed for each medication.  All medicine must be sent in the original container; a refrigerator is available if needed. For out-of-country and homeschooled staff, please also submit a completed immunization record.

Schedules and availabilities:  There are limited spaces available for Junior Staff members.  We can normally accommodate one to two weeks of volunteering per Junior Counselor, and three to five sessions for Assistant Counselors.  Staff members with Camper siblings will be preferentially scheduled to sessions with their family members attending.  We will try to schedule all Junior Staff by May 1.  After that date, we may not be able to accommodate a request for date changes.

Late season openings:  Due to the nature of camper registrations, we may have additional spaces available for Junior Counselors once the summer begins.  We will offer additional sessions to those who indicated a preference for the opened weeks, and then email all registered Junior Staff members with announcements regarding additional session availabilities.