Our Programs

Overview

More than 16,000 Maine youth between the ages of 8 and 18 have benefited from the summer programming at Camp Susan Curtis since it opened in 1974.  Today we offer four sessions of two week co-ed residential camp for a total of around 500 campers per summer.  We provide traditional camp experiences for 3rd through 7th graders, a variety of special ‘bridge programs’ for early teens, and a comprehensive leadership development program for older teen campers. Campers are invited from every county in Maine, and are referred directly by school counselors.  Campers must demonstrate financial need by qualifying for free or reduced lunch through the USDA school lunch program.  They receive full scholarships, calculated to be $1200 per camper per two week session.  The Susan L Curtis Charitable Foundation works year-round raising funds to provide a life-changing experience for these youth.  We are developing ways to stay connected and offer opportunities to campers and their families throughout the year.

 Curriculum

With a focus on habits and skills for lifelong achievement, Camp Susan Curtis levels the playing field of skill development that becomes increasingly uneven as disadvantaged children mature. Camp programs include strengths-based outdoor experiential education, leadership training, adventure programming, arts education and environmental awareness.  All campers participate in Financial Responsibility, Health & Wellness, and Literacy activities.  Character building,  role modeling, socialization and recreation are inherent in Camp Susan Curtis programming, allowing some of Maine’s most vulnerable young people to master the strategies and structure they will need to succeed toward high school graduation and beyond:

“Skills such as coping, dealing with disappointment and handling conflicts have improved. Also social interactions are more positive with less conflict. Getting along with others and reporting unsafe incidents has improved also. Better focus on academics and personal goals have been noticed also. Thank you!”
“CSC’s focus on assisting students with understanding the importance of their education has been significant and noticed by our school community. Please keep this up and know that CSC plays a big role in assisting many of our students to feel better about themselves and the important role of being responsible to themselves and certainly others….including their parents, teachers and their peers. 🙂 We thank you for all you do to assist our students to be the best they can be!”

— Feedback received from school referral partners

SUMMER PROGRAMMING

Traditional Camp Program

Traditional Camp is available to 3rd to 7th grade program participants who live in a cabin community with 10 to 12 same–grade campers and 2 to 3 adult leaders. The daily schedule allows for a variety of activities, all chosen by the individual camper or the community cabin group. Swimming, boating, challenge course, archery, environmental education, arts and crafts, performing arts, hiking, and sports are just a sample of the many activities to be enjoyed. Evenings are spent as a whole camp, playing games or singing at the campfire.

stART Success Through Art

The Susan Curtis stART Program offers high-quality creative Visual Arts and Photography programs while developing interests and showcasing talents. Campers are entering the 8th and 9th grades and choose a session that meets their arts interest.

Venture Out Trip Program

The Venture Out Trip Program has four sessions of wilderness expedition programming over the course of the summer. Campers practice Outdoor Living and Leave No Trace Skills at CSC and then leave camp for a 6-day adventure in the mountains and on the waters of Maine.

Leadership Development Program

Leadership Development is an opportunity for campers to transition from the role of camper to that of a staff member.  Through a three-stage program, campers are able to build leadership skills while contributing to camp activities and cabin life.

Leaders in Training 1

This two week program is the first step in Leadership Development. Campers rotate through program areas and assist with Special Event planning while participating in teambuilding and critical thinking initiatives.

Leaders in Training 2

This two week program is for graduates of the LIT 1 program and continues to build on leadership development while allowing campers to assist in a broader range of programming.

Counselor in Training

A small group of LIT graduates are selected to live in camper cabins and work in program areas while participating in teambuilding and leadership development workshops for one month, with the goal being to return as staff members the following year.

YEAR-ROUND PROGRAMMING

Bowdoin Visit - CSC Camp to Campus and Career Trip

Camp Susan Curtis has extended programming, available to former and current campers. The programs encourage them to navigate the path which begins with high school graduation, higher education, and career aspirations by using habits and skills learned at camp – collaboration, communication, motivation to achieve, decision making, critical thinking, and beyond. Participants in year round programming will gain valuable information and resources with:

• Workshops
• Personalized college campus tours
• Job site visits
• Valuable information panels

Topics may include

• Applying to college
• Taking the Accuplacer and other testing
• Choosing a major/career path
• And much, much more

For more information about year-round programming please contact our offices at 774-1552 or send an email to info@susancurtisfoundation.org