A Summer Camp Staff Full-Circle Journey

Kristen, a summer camp staff, smiling

It’s not a unique occurrence that campers come back to work as summer camp staff in these spaces that meant so much to them growing up. 

Kristen, a former camper at Camp ROCK (Raising Our Celiac Kids – an annual partner camp hosted at Camp Courage), decided to return in 2023 as a cabin counselor.  

“I remember just enjoying walking around with my friends, going tubing, doing the arts and crafts, the dance, and all of the activities that now I get to put on as a counselor,” Kristen said with a smile. 

Meeting people with celiac was a great relief for Kristen, as she and others she knew were often excluded from social events due to dietary restrictions. “Growing up, we were always the kids who wouldn’t get invited to birthday parties because we couldn’t eat the cake. It [celiac disease] was just such a pain for people. Meeting people who had that same sort of issue or struggle was really great.” 

As a child of a military family who moved around a lot, Kristen mentioned that Camp Courage was one of the constants in her life that she looked forward to.  

“Literally, the first thing I did when I turned 18 was apply to work here because I was so excited for it. It’s just been such a good experience to help people and to just know that for some of the campers that come here, this is the highlight of their entire lives. I remember for me, coming as a camper was one of the best times of my life. So now just being able to return that favor to people… it’s such an amazing feeling.” 

Share in the excitement of making life-changing memories and adventures this summer. Apply for a summer camp staff role here. 

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