Types of Summer Camps

The majority of CIEE Camp Exchange USA participants are placed in traditional camps, which can be co-ed or serve only female or male campers. Such camps offer a wide variety of activities that ranges from arts and crafts to horseback riding and archery.

However, there are several other types of camps in the U.S. where you could spend your summer. These camps include:

Agency/nonprofit camps are affiliated with a social or advocacy agency that assists with funding. Many serve co-ed campers from all walks of life – in the same facility, on separate campuses, or through different sessions for boys and girls. These camps range from very rustic to traditional in their cabins and buildings. Many agency camps appear to be similar to private camps, but often follow a mission aligned with the affiliated agency.

Girl Scout
Girl Scout camps serve only female campers and are often run in one- or two-week sessions throughout the course of the summer. Girl Scout camps are generally focused on building wilderness skills and participating in outdoor activities. Most Girl Scout camps use primitive tent cabins for their housing.

These camps, which are usually run or sponsored by outside community groups, often serve low-income campers from inner cities or extremely rural backgrounds. These camps are often quite rustic in nature as they are dependent on philanthropic organizations and other groups for funding.

Religiously Affiliated
Most religious camps are affiliated with either the Christian or Jewish faith and incorporate both religious and non-religious activities. The emphasis on religion varies greatly from camp to camp.

Specialty camps focus on a particular sport or activity such as horseback riding, sailing, or theater. Specialty camps may also serve specific populations such as campers who have ADHD or have suffered a loss.

Special Needs
Special needs camps serve campers with one or more disabilities. This includes campers who are emotionally, mentally, or physically disabled. Specialty needs camps usually offer the most challenging camp experience, but also one of the most rewarding.