We are committed to your child having a successful and positive experience at W*K. The staff, leadership, Sandy & Will are prepared to deal with homesickness at Camp.
Here are a few suggestions of things that you can do with your child before Camp starts to help reduce the possibility of homesickness:
- Have a conversation with your child about being homesick. Talking about it won’t cause it or make it worse but instead can prepare them for how to handle these feelings. Talk about going away as an exciting challenge and a growing experience.
- Tell your child what Camp will be like. Watch the Camp videos together and talk about what you see.
- Talk with other parents and friends to learn from their experiences. Connect with your W*K Big Brother or Big Sister. Introduce your child to others in the community who will be attending W*K.
- Become familiar with the Camp environment, the daily routine/schedule of activities. Family Camp Weekend is a great time to get acclimated to W*K. Campers and their families are invited to spend the weekend at Camp as our guests. Sandy & Will live at Camp year-round and love to visit with campers and give tours.
- Before arriving at Camp, we recommend that your child spend the night or weekend at a friend’s or relative’s house a few times to get the feel of being in a new place. That can ease them into spending time away from home and lessen the shock of sleeping in a strange bed or being around different people.
- Prepare your child to care for her/himself — with packing, learning to make a bed., etc.
- Problem solve with your child. Anticipate problems: “What if you…lose your baseball glove?; “Don’t feel well?”…etc. Help them figure out, “Who to go to for….?”
- Write your child a letter so it’s waiting for them in their mailbox when they arrive at Camp.
- Encourage your child to do something that they enjoy. When they’re having fun, they are less likely to spend time thinking about people and things that they miss.
- Suggest talking to a friend, or their Big Sibling. Most veteran campers have dealt with homesickness in one way or another. Knowing they’re not the only one dealing with this can take the sting out of feeling a little lonely, and they might feel better when they cheer up someone else.
We try hard to help your child make it through Camp because children who leave Camp may feel they’ve failed and, children who stay almost always adjust; they become our most enthusiastic campers! We are always available if you should have any concerns or questions.