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Self Esteem Camps for Kids

By Kay Ireland ; Updated June 13, 2017

As a way to combat low self esteem issues, parents may want to consider sending their child to summer camp. Children with low self-esteem may feel inferior and have difficulty in social situations. Although a child may initially resist the team-building atmosphere of summer camp, the long-term results can be worthwhile as the child develops a sense of belonging by socializing with his peers.

Consequences of Low Self-Esteem

Addressing problems with low self-esteem is essential for healthy child development. According to the University of Texas at Austin, the risks associated with low self-esteem include an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and feelings of loneliness. People with poor self-esteem are more likely to have problems with friendships and romantic relationships. There is also a higher risk of drug and alcohol abuse. Affected teens may shy away from opportunities due to an overwhelming fear of failure.

A change in a child’s personality may not happen overnight, but attending a summer camp can offer them the tools needed to improve his self-esteem.

Camp Benefits

A summer camp that targets self-esteem issues will have a number of benefits for a child who is struggling with her self-worth. Camp offers a unique opportunity for children to participate over the summer in organized group activities. The activities can help them connect with children who they can form an everlasting bond with. Camp counselors can also be helpful to children who are struggling with their self-esteem since they can often be viewed as positive role models.

Learning new skills while attending summer camp can help a child’s self-esteem improve tenfold. Children will feel useful as they tackle a task they may have thought impossible beforehand. Camps may also incorporate volunteer service into their daily schedules. Volunteer opportunities can aid in self-esteem by offering advance job training to camp participants.

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Specialized Summer Camps

Children and teens struggling with a medical condition are often found to improve their self-image after attending specialized summer camp programs. For instance, a 2011 study conducted by physicians affiliated with the Association of Dutch Burn Centres, found a positive body image effect on young burn survivors who attended summer camp together.

There are several chains of summer camps, like the Learning Camp, that focus on helping children who struggle academically or socially. Besides fun camp-themed activities, the children learn techniques for dealing with life’s challenges.

Choosing a Summer Camp

A review of the perspective camp’s goals will help a parent choose wisely. The camp should focus on teaching the children how to treat one another with respect while paying close attention to a person’s feelings. A camp that recognizes and rewards positive behavior is also a must. The camp should be well rounded and have a small ratio of counselors to campers in order to offer the most one on one support. Parents should visit the camp before enrolling to get a feel for the environment. The child should be included in order to feel involved with the camp selection.

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