Dear Friends,

Over the last week, nearly 200 of our incredible summer team from around the country and a few other countries have arrived at Farm & Wilderness to get ready for camp. It’s not just the thundershowers that are making the air feel electric as we prepare to welcome our Barn Day Camp youth next Monday and our residential campers and Questers on July 3rd.

We’ve had to adapt a lot of the ways we have traditionally welcomed staff and conducted staff training. While the structure might be different, the spirit of folks–new and returning–coming together to learn, share, and support each other is very much the same.  Training for summer staff will include the standard topics such as Wilderness First Aid (WFA), lifeguard training, ages and stages, inclusion and equity, work projects, emergency response, and specific training on our COVID-related protocols.

In addition to training, our summer team is getting to know each other, building relationships, and a sense of being a team. Within their camp pods, they are circling up and taking overnight backpacking trips.

The other day, I spoke with a returning summer staff member and camp alum. He talked about what he learned about himself while he was a camper and now, as a counselor,  what more he learned about himself as he worked with campers.  This year he’s taking on a new role and is excited for that challenge.

I want to thank all of our staff for their incredible dedication this summer, and the care, fun, and commitment I’ve already seen them bring to our shared work.  And thanks, too, to the entire Farm & Wilderness community–you all have been so supportive in so many ways!

In peace,

Frances McLaughlin
Executive Director

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