4 Reasons Why Sleepaway Camps Are Important for Young Artists in the Post-Pandemic World
As the world emerges from the shadows of the pandemic, most have begun to regain their sense of normalcy, but for many young artists, the path back to their creative pursuits has been a challenging one. After years of empty studios, dark theaters, and quiet garages, kids are ready to be themselves once again. And sleepaway camps offer a unique sanctuary for these artists.
Working Together Once Again: Collaboration can be incredibly important for young artists. It pushes kids to listen, communicate, and blend their talents to create beautiful art. To the fault of nothing but the pandemic, there has been a lack of opportunity for kids to navigate teamwork and what it means to create art collaboratively outside of the school system. Sleepaway camps provide campers of all different backgrounds a space to learn from different perspectives and skills and be inspired by ideas they may not have encountered on their own.
Reigniting Artistic Independence: While some artists collaborate with others, some choose to create on their own. However, the isolating nature of the pandemic may have hindered the independence of many artists. The enforced isolation during the pandemic lockdown worsened feelings of loneliness. The lack of social interactions and art events meant that young artists missed out on so many opportunities to nurture their artistic growth. Sleepaway camps empower young artists to explore (or re-explore) their creative ideas and instincts independently, all while having the space and support of a community. When campers are away from their familiar confines of home and free from the pressures of school deadlines, they are challenged to develop their artistic identities on their own and gain the confidence to express themselves authentically.
Time Away from Screens: Living in this post-pandemic world has shown that kids are wedged between the intersection of the ever-expanding digital realm and reality. For the last few years, phones were the only source for connections and entertainment. Many kids have grown up with the pervasiveness of smartphones and tablets being the norm. In findings revealed by the Ontario COVID-19 Science Advisory Table in 2022, it has been observed that non-online school based screen time for children experienced a noteworthy rise in with the onset of the pandemic, from 2.6 to 5.9 hours a day. Sleepaway camps offer a unique opportunity for kids to unplug from their devices and reconnect face-to-face. It's amazing what kids can do when they are given the time to just be kids again.
Lifelong Friendships: The connections formed at sleepaway camps are truly special. There is something about the shared experiences of summer camp that create lifelong bonds. Kids raised through the height of the pandemic missed out on so many chances to form these friendships and expand their social horizons. Sleepaway camps, once again, offer kids the chance to make friends organically and truly share a special connection.
Sleepaway camps have taken on a newfound significance, offering a unique space for fostering growth and a haven for self-expression. The importance of such spaces cannot be overstated. In the wake of the pandemic, where so many values have become lost, the need for children to be kids again is more important than ever. Sleepaway camps offer the perfect venue for kids to rediscover who they are and once again enjoy the journey of making art.