Summer camp is not the favorite pastime of many people simply because they do not like the outdoors, living without television and eating in some form of canteen. But, summer camp teaches children and young adults valuable skills and tools that can help them to survive in the event that they are faced with a sudden and unexpected crisis. While many people never imagine having to flee to the forest or the mountains to escape disaster, the things that people learn in camp prepare them mentally for the challenges of being out of their element and having to find creative ways to get by.
From learning how to interpret nature and hike to understanding how to pitch a tent, sail a boat or fish, people learn self-reliance as well as how we are connected to nature in a special way. Nature is full of abundant resources that until recently many of us had to gather or collect ourselves. Berries, plants, vegetables, fruits and meat all come from nature. Wood for fire, fuel and shelter come from nature. Medicine used to come from nature as well. Everything that we possibly need to survive can be obtained with minimal equipment and resources right in our very back yard- the forest or woods.
Summer camp teaches us how to do things differently- to view the world and our surroundings in a new way while learning how to adapt and develop new skills. All of these are perfect foundational learning experiences that can help anyone to survive through a crisis even if they never have to light a fire or collect wood for a stove. Survival is part creativity, part planning and part common sense. All of these aspects are taught in wilderness camp, and anyone who missed it when they were growing up missed out on a great opportunity.
However, it is never too late to learn new habits and embrace new ideas that can help you to prepare for and manage a crisis situation. You can do many little things now to help you to become familiar with how to think in different ways about your surroundings, your resources and your options if you are faced with a situation that requires swift attention and choices in order to save your life. One of the biggest things that is taught in summer camp is that it is important to have necessary supplies and tools on hand to make do with what you have. A knife, some matches, perhaps a rope and a flashlight or lantern are basic tools that campers are familiar with.
And, they know how to use them to do amazing things. So, think about what kinds of things you want to have on hand in your car, in your home or at your office that will help you to make do and get by if the lights go out or some other calamity invades your peaceful existence. Maybe you will want to stock up on some food or other items at the store. Perhaps you may want to get your hands on a survival kit just in case it will come in handy. You might want to take a self-defense or first aid course to learn basic skills that can save you or someone else in the future.
These are just a few suggestions that are designed to help you to get your mind going as you come up with your own ideas. Survival doesn’t mean being an expert with respect to the outdoors or developing elaborate and complicated plans and procedures. It means making good choices and making good use of the resources that are available to you at the time. You should also plan, prepare, practice and think about a lot of different options as you learn more about how to survive through a range of different potential problems.
Being forced in to a life and death struggle is something that does not always come with a lot of warning, and many people are completely unprepared with what they encounter. How they respond will have a direct influence on the overall outcome, and you can help yourself and someone you love tremendously simply by making good decisions that stem from being prepared and capable of thinking clearly and smart during a difficult situation.
Summer camp is a great place to learn, grow, work with little and accomplish great things in a different environment. Don’t think twice about sending your kids there so they can learn skills that will follow them through out their lives, and don’t think twice about applying some of these principles to your own life as well. Learn how to think, act and make do with little in order to give yourself the best chance of surviving almost anything. You can do great things as long as you are prepared.