BV hosted it’s 5th annual Chapter Mini-Camp (CMC) the weekend of January 25th. This time we invited some new friends from the Philly Chapter. More than 35 of our JBers and 5 JBers from the Philly Chapter attended “Camp Brandywine” for a weekend of fun, friends, team building and learning about immigration and how to resolve our conflicts.
Here are some highlights according to a few of our JBers:
Mini camp was a great experience for many reasons. The activities were challenging and there was a lot of team work involved. The last activity on Saturday was my favorite. We were paired up and my partner and I had very different views on things. And we had to agree with each other and pick a position. The hardest question was whether there is a God or not. We could not agree and stayed in the middle. The debriefs were great because we talked about our feelings and drew comparisons to the real world.
The campsite itself was immaculate and one of the best I’ve ever been too. The food was fantastic. I particularly liked taco night; I had three plates worth! It was a beautiful setting. I wish I had spent more time outside, but it was too cold.
Seeing all my Interchange friends from last year was awesome! We got a chance to catch up. I also made some new friends. I had a lot of fun in the bunks, when we played Exploding Kittens.
This camp was better than the other camps (that weren’t CISV) that I’ve been to because there was more communication. This helps keep the level of disagreements between the kids down and we also learn to work together. Even when we had free time it wasn’t chaotic. CISV camps are a great experience and I love going to them.
When Camp Brandywine Valley began on Friday night, we were introduced to our lovely camp counselors, each of which had a specialty to line up with the summer camp theme of our minicamp. For example, Hughie was the Art Counselor, Baily was the Camp Cook, and Isabel was the Camp Nurse.
We all made name tags for ourselves out of cardboard and string and then started out the weekend with a fun fort-building activity which allowed us to get to know each other.
In the second activity, we worked together as a whole camp to get balls into boxes only using cardboard. After another activity, we headed to lunch and then enjoyed some free time. Then we had a the challenge of scavenger hunt to uncover a secret code written in Polish to exemplify what it must be like to be an immigrant, not knowing the language or culture.
After that activity the next involved creating our own vision of a national park. We had to face the decision of whether to preserve the park or sell it for oil. This debrief and all the others had a rich conversation and many contributors.
Then it was a race to see who would be first in line for dinner. After dinner we were paired up within our age groups and were asked to answer a series of controversial questions such as, “do you believe that human beings are born, innately good?” and “do you believe that certain social media services, such as Twitter, have the right to control the content that is viewed on their platform?” We had to discuss several statements with our partner and come to consensus about whether we both agreed or disagreed with the statement. The activity was followed by an introspective debrief in which we discussed the annual CISV theme of conflict and resolution and how we could apply it to our daily lives.
That is a taste of some of the fun activities and gives you a feel for both the fun and also the thoughtful participation of everyone.
As always, CMC was awesome. Kids learned but much more importantly had so much fun doing it!!
Check out some more images: