Connecting with Your Camp Community: As a Camp Parent

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If there’s anything we’ve seen this year through our Camp Community series, it’s that no matter where you fall in the Greystone family, there are countless ways to find connection all year long. At it’s heart, this is what camp is all about! Whether camper or staff (or even alumnae for a weekend!), when we come through the gates, we set aside the hustle and distractions of the world to focus on what matters: glorifying God, growing, and cultivating friendships. But when you go back out in the world, you can carry the camp community and spirit with you. The Greystone team doesn’t stop this focus when the summer is over, and you don’t have to either!

This month we’re narrowing in on one of the most important pieces of the camp puzzle: our parents! What we want to say to you could fill a novel (We love you! We’re thankful for you! We admire you endlessly!), but today we’re delving in to what the camp community can look like as a parent.

Sending your daughter away to camp is a BIG decision. It requires sacrifice of all kinds, and an enormous amount of trust. How do you know she’s ready or that it’s the right fit? We know all about the rollercoaster of emotions you go through - many of us are camp parents ourselves, so we’ve felt it too! At Greystone, we want to do everything we can to help you feel comfortable and confident no matter where you are in the process. We want to connect you to a community of likeminded parents feeling the same things! As a parent, you are a part of our community, connected with the same goal of loving and supporting each Greystone girl.

Read on for our top tips and resources for connecting with that community all year long.

  1. Reach out to other parents. There are many avenues to find others in your area - you can join our Parent Facebook page or post in your City Connection group. Get your daughter involved! Ask her to connect you to her friends’ parents, or reach out to her Penpal’s family when she gets hers later this month. Keep an eye on our Facebook and Instagram profiles for other parents who are commenting and engaging. Look out for Greystone bumper stickers or t-shirts in your home town. Most of all? Be the one to reach out first! If you’re craving that connection, don’t wait on others to start it. Just like we tell our campers in the summer, all it takes is a smile and a hello. Other parents are a great resource for questions, concerns, and just plain friendship - you already have a huge thing in common!
  2. Think outside of the box. Maybe you know of other camp families in your area, but want to take it one step further. This is where you can get creative! Organize a trip to the Y for your girls to show off their Synchro skills. Start a group text with packing tips and suggestions as you think of them. Have a daughter that has aged out of camp, or outgrown her Chacos? Offer your hand-me-downs or set up a camp necessities swap. Check out our recommended books for parents and start a book club with other parents in your area. Offer to carpool with another family to camp, or decide to all stay in the same hotel the night before. Think about what you want from this community (friendship for you or your daughter? Christian community? Someone to ask your questions to?) and plan accordingly.
  3. Keep the lines of communication open. We are easy to get in touch with, we value your input, and we want to hear from you! Do you have concerns about your daughter’s summer? Questions about the logistics? Just not sure what to pack? Contact us! We are your teammates here, so keep us in the loop. We love getting to connect with our parents and figuring out solutions to any problem you have. Help us help you make this the best experience ever for your family.
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Resources we love:

  • Wondering if your daughter is ready for camp? We get this question a lot, so we’ve made a resource to help you think through all the factors. Still unsure? Reach out to us!
  • Helpful Hints. We’re continually compiling all the best hints and hacks from the people that know best - other parents! Bookmark this page for quick answers to the top questions we get before the summer. But sometimes you just want to know “what do MOST people do?” Enter our Packing Norms page, your go-to for deciphering the packing list and figuring out what to pack in her trunk.
  • Waldo. We take SO many photos during the summer; it can feel like a part-time job to look through them all to find your daughter! Which is why we partner with Waldo facial recognition software. With a small additional fee (that doesn’t come to us), Waldo will text you photos of your daughter. No more scanning through thousands of images. Most parents say this service is worth its weight in gold!
  • The daily blog. The best way to know what is going on at camp day to day? Subscribing to our blog! During the summer Jimboy (and Katie at Junior Camp) posts daily updates including the weather, what we’re eating, and any other significant information you’d want to know. It’ll help you write detailed letters to your daughter, and feel more connected to what she’s doing while she’s gone.
  • The Parents Section. Our website is packed full of useful information for preparing for your daughter’s summer. Just visit the Parents tab for all the relevant information, including links to digital copies of our Parent Handbook, The Greystone Store, and class descriptions for all sessions. Need it fast? Use Google! Googling your question + “Camp Greystone” will 9 times out of 10 lead you straight to the page you need. Still can’t find it? Just give us a call!
  • Our Devotions Site. Here you can find Daily Devotions that come to your inbox all year long (many families like to read these together), as well as audio recordings of our Morning Assembly talks during the summer so you can keep up with all your daughter is hearing.

Most of all?

Know that we will take care of you! We give lots of information in an effort to be helpful, to answer your questions, and enable you to feel totally confident about your camp experience. But at the end of the day, you are busy! You have so much on your plate already, and we don’t want camp to feel like an extra burden. Just focus on helping your daughter get excited for her summer (and filling out your forms!) and we’ll take care of the rest.

We are grateful for you and we are cheering you on. It is such a privilege to come alongside you as you parent your daughter, and be trusted to give her a great experience this summer. Thank you for being a part of our community!