Overnight Camp Counselor, Camp Independence
A special place for children and young adults with spina bifida and other neurological disabilities. The camp program is designed to teach life skills, foster independence, build confidence, teach leadership and increase self-esteem.
Located near Fox Lake in northern Illinois, Camp Independence offers one-week residential camp sessions in the summer and weekend retreats from September through April.
The camp is situated on 300 acres, and a 90-acre, semi-private lake called Fish Lake. The Camp Independence building is a state-of-the-art facility with two dormitory-style sleeping rooms, several fully-accessible bathrooms, and a full basement for activities and storm shelter. Meals are served in the beautiful Great Room or in the main lodge. Campers will enjoy three nutritionally balanced, “camper friendly” meals daily and an evening snack. A five-station high ropes course, indoor Olympic size swimming pool, large sport fields, kayaks, basketball courts, campfire ring, and a 48-ft climbing tower are a part of the exciting program and facilities.
The Overnight Camp Counselor serves as a professional role model for our campers by leading through example and guiding campers through recreational activities that teach life skills, encourage healthy and safe behaviors and create a positive camper experience. The Overnight Camp Counselor ensures that each youth has adequate supervision including ensuring that no youth is unsupervised at any time.
Scope of Responsibilities
- Promotes the YMCA and provides outstanding customer service by creating an outstanding camper experience for children, parents and families.
- Leads recreational activities with campers, including but not limited to, arts and crafts, sports, social recreation, songfests, nature hikes, archery, and other games and hobbies. Instructs campers using various teaching methods and modifies activities as needed to ensure that campers of all ages and experience levels are engaged.
- Teaches socially acceptable behaviors to campers by serving as a role model and by using age-appropriate positive reinforcement and behavior management strategies.
- Communicates consistently with supervisor, team leader, unit leader and other team members to ensure everyone is kept abreast of camp activities and schedule.
- Supports camp activities as assigned by supervisor, including any specialty camp activities.
- Ensures the physical and emotional health and safety of campers by being safety conscious, following all established YMCA standards and critically evaluating situations for potential risks.
- Ensures compliance with established rules and regulations to ensure safety. Monitors campers and counselors and provides corrective coaching and intervention as necessary.
- Sets up facilities and/or equipment for activities and stores equipment appropriately after use. Immediately notifies Program Director of any broken or unsafe equipment or if more resources/equipment are needed.
- Works to keep camp facilities clean at all times
Child Abuse Prevention
Supports the commitment of the YMCA to child abuse prevention by:
- Reporting any items that may provide a health or safety hazard to staff, members or guests to your supervisor.
- Following all policies and procedures related to keeping children safe in our facilities and programs, including those related to the monitoring and supervision of children.
- Reporting any suspicious behavior and violation of policy and procedures to your supervisor.
- Completing all child abuse prevention training as required.
Requirements and Qualifications:
- Must be at least 18 years of age by the first day of camp
- Must have prior experience working with youth; previous experience in a camp setting strongly preferred
- Relevant specialty experience for positions supporting specialty camps
- Commitment to, and passion for, the YMCA of Metro Chicago’s mission
- Excellent verbal communication skills, including the ability to clearly and concisely present ideas and concepts and tailor communication to multiple audiences
- Passion for working with diverse youth and ability to provide a high-quality of instruction using age-appropriate practices. Ability to observe camper behavior and apply appropriate behavior management techniques.
- Proven ability to establish constructive relationships and interact as a positive role model
- Continuous learner who leverages opportunities for learning and applies new knowledge and skills
- Demonstrates evidence of YMCA Y Team competencies in previous experience or practice
- Meets physical qualifications required as outlined in job description. The YMCA will provide reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities.