APPLY TO SERVE ON STAFF AT CAMP QUEST OHIO
Staff Application will open in January 2019.
Volunteering for a week of Camp Quest will fill you with joy, likely lead to you having some of the most meaningful friendships of your life, help you get to know yourself better, and (probably) leave you pretty darn tired.
Many of our volunteers say that their week of volunteering at camp is the favorite week of the year. We have people who have been coming back every year since 1997. Many of our past campers go on to become volunteers.
We’ve laid out the overview of how it works below. Please let us know if you have any questions. And if you’re ready, please apply! :-)
Volunteers fill all of our core roles at Camp Quest. We contract out for our facilities manager, kitchen staff, and lifeguards via our host camp. Everyone else is a volunteer.
We will house you and feed you while you’re at camp. We have some money set aside to help volunteers in need with travel to and from camp. Please discuss this with the camp director. We don’t want lack of travel funds to get in the way of an amazing volunteer being at camp.
Most first time volunteers start as cabin leaders. Most cabins have two adult cabin leaders, and many will have a Leadership Track student who is 16 or 17 and is assigned to help manage the cabin. Most cabins have between 5 and 10 campers. We try to pair new cabin leaders with experienced ones.
Cabin Leaders must work together to make sure that one of them is aware of where their campers are while they are at Camp Quest Ohio. The campers will often be in the custody of staff leading other activities, but the Cabin Leaders must know specifically whose custody their campers are in.
While it is unrealistic to be with your campers every single minute, we do ask you to be as present as possible. An incredibly valuable role of the Cabin Leader is to discuss the happenings of the day with campers to help them process what they have experienced and leadered. The more present you are with your campers, the better you can do this.
While not expected, Cabin Leaders are welcome to work with the Camp Director and Assistant Camp Director of Programming to come up with programming that they might like to lead. We invite you to share your expertise with the campers.
If you have extensive experience in a specific area, we will consider assigning you to a support role rather than a cabin role in your first year. This will require a detailed conversation with the camp director.
We require all of our staff to be 18 years or older on the first day of camp. If you’re 16 or 17 and interested in getting involved in camp, we encourage you to check out our Leadership Track program.
All volunteers must undergo a criminal background check. A criminal record will not automatically prevent you from being on staff, but we do want you to discuss it with the camp director.
We don’t require summer camp experience, but you should have some prior experience as a caretaker of children or teens. This can be informal experience.
Volunteers arrive in the early afternoon on the Saturday before campers arrive (Sunday afternoon). Volunteers depart the following Saturday after lunch and our debrief. There is often an informal staff thank you party after that.
While at camp for the week, you’re basically on. We encourage everyone to get enough sleep and support staff will work with you to schedule breaks throughout the day. We work hard to ensure the health and safety of all of our participants, including you!
Camp days normally start with morning circle at 8 am and lights out for campers is typically 10:30 pm (we let the campers stay up a little later on the last night). There is often an evening debrief meeting at 11 pm or so. We aren’t kidding about the long days.
Camp is a very engrossing activity. You should not plan to have more than one hour a day for time to attend to outside demands. Please let the camp director know beforehand if you’re taking an online course or have other demands that will demand your attention while at camp.
We ask that you plan not to leave the campground during the week. If you have an emergency, you need to get the permission the camp director to leave. We’re counting on you to help ensure the health and safety of our campers for the week of camp you’ve volunteered. If you have an exam or some other reason you must leave camp for a brief period, please discuss it with the Camp Director before you commit to being on staff.
Although most of the buildings at camp are ADA compliant, moving around camp involves some elevation change (some via trails and some via stairs). We are eager to make reasonable accommodations for volunteers who may require it. We are open to more extraordinary accomodations if we have lots of time to prepare. Of course, our mission is to serve the campers, but part of that is modeling an inclusive staff. Please discuss any accomodations you may need with the Camp Director early in your application process.
Our kitchen staff is very eager to accommodate dietary needs, but again prior knowledge greatly eases this process. Please discuss any dietary needs you may have with the camp director early, and include this information in your application.
Drugs and Alcohol
Alcohol and recreational drugs are prohibited at Camp Quest Ohio.
You must not use tobacco or e-cigarettes where any camper can observe you doing so.
We ask that you keep all medications either locked in your car or give them to the camp medical officer when you arrive.
Our host camp has acceptable wireless coverage. There is also wifi emanating from a centrally located building. It’s pretty slow and certainly doesn’t cover all of camp.
In an effort to encourage our campers to slow down and connect with nature and each other, we ask our staff to try to do the same as much as possible.
You’re very welcome to bring your phone and other devices. We ask that you limit their use in from of campers to official camp business. There is a staff workroom where you can use your devices out of sight of the campers.
References and Connections
Camp Directors are normally delighted to give glowing references to volunteers.
Camp Quest volunteers are at many different places in their careers. Volunteering at camp is an excellent way to connect with people who have had experiences that will be novel to you.
Camp Quest Ohio requires all of our volunteers to complete about five hours of online training in youth development before the start of camp.
We’ll also have an orientation phone call for all volunteers before camp and you’ll be expected to read and digest the staff manual.
The day before campers arrive, staff need to show up to get to know each other and to go through some on-site training.
We may be able to provide volunteers funding to complete Red Cross and American Camp Association trainings before camp. Discuss this with the Camp Director.
Camp Quest has lots to offer its volunteers. Summer camps that run so heavily on volunteers are rare. You’ll be spending time with some truly remarkable people who are willing to put their time into nurturing our world and its future. At Camp Quest we invite campers, and staff, to be authentic. We also take pride in our roles as authority figures who teach campers to question authority.
Also, our campers are amazing. You might not guess it from their age (then again, maybe you would), but they are not just students, but also teachers. And funny, and playful, and full of curiosity, and giggles.
June Key Staff Members:
Camp Director: Heather Robinson
Assistant Camp Director - Leadership Development: Caleb Williams
Assistant Camp Director - Programming: Shawn Jeffers
July Key Staff Members:
Camp Director: Nicole Ward
Assistant Camp Director - Leadership Development: Shawn Jeffers
Assistant Camp Director - Programming: August Brunsman