Many of us remember attending youth camp when we were kids, having lots of fun, and making great memories. So, it may come as a shock to hear that more and more, it seems that teens simply don’t want to go. We might be tempted to wonder, “Why would they want to miss out on such an awesome experience?”
But the reasons that seem ridiculous to us may be quite valid and worth discussing. Their mindsets may bring up some great points that will help us plan youth camps with teens flocking in instead of running the other direction.
- They don’t have any friends going
Part of what makes youth camp so memorable is the relationships that are formed among friends. Many teens may not want to go simply because they don’t have friends who are going – and this is perfectly understandable. Don’t we, as adults, do the same thing? We want to stick around people we know, never venturing out of our comfort zones. If only we knew how to make friends at youth camp earlier.
There are many steps you can take to address this. First, you could start by making a Facebook group for youth interested in the event and posting some short icebreakers. You can also invite them to smaller youth events (or even youth groups) before camp to get them acquainted with each other via a speed friending game. If each teen recognizes even at least one friendly face, they will feel much more at ease going to youth camp such as pa christian conference center.
- It’s the same as going to church
The point of youth camps, such as christian retreat centers pa, is to build up the faith of young people in a new and refreshing atmosphere. Unfortunately, many teens are skeptical that it will be the same experience as going to church. Teens don’t want to be preached all week; they want to be engaged. They want something other than what they get every Sunday morning.
Therefore, emphasize the parts of your camp that are most unique and interactive. Good speakers are important, but your teens aren’t going just to hear someone talk. Show them that they will get something they can’t get anywhere else by going to youth camp.
- They doubt their faith
Adolescence is a critical time for finding one’s faith. Teens who had never really thought about religion before may start searching for answers. Teens who grew up in the church may start to ask hard questions and doubt what they believe. While youth camp is a great experience to strengthen faith, it can be scary for someone on edge.
And so, these teens must see youth camp such as christian retreat center pennsylvania accessible to everyone, no matter where they are in their faith. They should feel comfortable, not surrounded by people who are judgmental and “holier than them.” God will do the rest if you strive to create an all-inclusive, sincere atmosphere.
- They had a bad experience at camp in the past
Not all youth camps are created equal. Sadly, many youth camps have issues that may have seriously bothered teens. Or maybe they just ran into an unavoidable situation and are reluctant to let it happen again. Regardless of the experience, you can encourage skeptical teens that this youth camp will be different.
For instance, you could make a christian conference center pennsylvania promotional video that includes testimonies from teens who have attended a youth camp in the past and loved it. Of course, not everyone in attendance will have a wonderful, life-changing experience; but everyone has the chance to. And we should be encouraging them to take that chance.
- They think it’s boring
It’s hard to grab a teenager’s attention – and even harder to keep it. Some teens may be convinced that they will be bored out of their minds if they go to youth camp. This could be due to a previous experience or cynical talk from their friends. Your job as a camp counselor is to challenge their preconceived notions and show them that youth camp can be exciting and fun. But how?
It goes without saying that to engage the youth, you have to know what they like. That’s why it is good to have younger adults on your staff who can appeal to the interests of this generation in planning your camp. Plan activities and games that teens will want to participate in. You can even tie in elements of pop culture into your theme. The possibilities are infinite.
- They would rather do something else
In this fast-paced world, there are many things to do and see, especially for young people. New movies, video games, and fashion trends. High school sporting events, dances, and parties. All these things compete for teenagers’ time and attention, so how do you convince them that christian camp pennsylvania is worth giving up these things for?
One important thing to keep in mind is your advertising strategy. If christian camps in pennsylvania are advertised as a small week-long religious event, it will not likely win out over the other alternatives. Make sure you communicate the excitement that you’re hoping to create. Advertise the activities and games you’ll be organizing, as well as live music or other special incentives. In addition, try to plan the youth camp during a week over a school break when no other big events are happening (e.g., the county fair or the high school dance).
Times are changing, and what worked for teens ten years ago may not be effective today. But when we try to see things from their point of view, we can learn to plan youth camps that are more exciting, more creative, and more true to their core purpose. When we are passionate about what we’re planning, that enthusiasm will be tremendous and draw in even more teenagers.
We hope that now you know all the reasons behind lack of interest in youth to attend Christian camps. Now, Ii is on you to diagnose the exact reason among all of the reaons provided here and then make your young ones interested in attending Christian camps.