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Save the J1

Save the J1

Author -  Niall Yates

For years now, the J1 Visa has provided thousands and thousands of kiwis with the incredible opportunity of working at a summer camp in the United States of America. Those of us who have been lucky enough to work as a summer camp counsellor know exactly what camp life is like, and could explain it in our own different ways.

The special thing about the Camp America is that everyones experience is entirely different, but we all do it for the same reasons.

While we have our own reasons behind this, ultimately, we want to bring the world together through the experience of cultural exchange programs. By allowing energetic, thriving and fun loving counsellors across the globe come together to bring the utmost joys of summer camp to American kids from all walks of life, something incredible happens. Not only do we, as counsellors, learn so much more about ourselves, but we learn an incredible amount about the world and about people and friendship and about how it is absolutely possible to feel so much home when you are so far away from your own.

This means that the good in the world grows a little stronger. How? Because we meet new people and within 24 hours we are calling them our best friend. We experience so many ups and so many downs with people we have known for 12 weeks, which makes it feel like we’ve been friends since birth. We share so much love and so many memories with our camp families that bring us closer with our peers. It makes us realise that, if there can be so much love and family in a single summer camp, then the world can’t be such a bad place after all. This energy trickles down from counsellor to camper, who at the age of 6, or 16, meets a person from England, Australia or Ireland, Spain or New Zealand or South Africa and soon enough becomes like an older brother or sister.

There is nothing more important to teach the youth of today, the youth of the world and, in this case, the campers of America, that love and kindness will conquer evil and hate. 

These kids soon realise that there is so much more out there on this earth, not just what's right in front of them. By bringing people together from all over the world and allowing these kids to form bonds with their international counsellors, we’re introducing the idea that those who are foreign to us, or those who may speak a little differently than us, are not people to be feared, but people to be embraced and share stories and develop life long friendships with. People who, really are, not so different from us. And that is so important for everyone to realise.

Why we do what we do is to make the world a better place and it can happen. But not without the J1 visa can we do what we counsellors love. #savej1

 

Niall has been to Chestnut Lake Camp in Beach Lake, Pennsylvania for two summers. 

 

Save the J1

For years now, the J1 Visa has provided thousands and thousands of kiwis with the incredible opportunity of working at a summer camp in the United States of America. Those of us who have been lucky enough to work as a summer camp counsellor know exactly what camp life is like, and could explain it in our own different ways.

For years now, the J1 Visa has provided thousands and thousands of kiwis with the incredible opportunity of working at a summer camp in the United States of America. Those of us who have been lucky enough to work as a summer camp counsellor know exactly what camp life is like, and could explain it in our own different ways.

The special thing about the Camp America is that everyones experience is entirely different, but we all do it for the same reasons.

While we have our own reasons behind this, ultimately, we want to bring the world together through the experience of cultural exchange programs. By allowing energetic, thriving and fun loving counsellors across the globe come together to bring the utmost joys of summer camp to American kids from all walks of life, something incredible happens. Not only do we, as counsellors, learn so much more about ourselves, but we learn an incredible amount about the world and about people and friendship and about how it is absolutely possible to feel so much home when you are so far away from your own.

This means that the good in the world grows a little stronger. How? Because we meet new people and within 24 hours we are calling them our best friend. We experience so many ups and so many downs with people we have known for 12 weeks, which makes it feel like we’ve been friends since birth. We share so much love and so many memories with our camp families that bring us closer with our peers. It makes us realise that, if there can be so much love and family in a single summer camp, then the world can’t be such a bad place after all. This energy trickles down from counsellor to camper, who at the age of 6, or 16, meets a person from England, Australia or Ireland, Spain or New Zealand or South Africa and soon enough becomes like an older brother or sister.

There is nothing more important to teach the youth of today, the youth of the world and, in this case, the campers of America, that love and kindness will conquer evil and hate. 

These kids soon realise that there is so much more out there on this earth, not just what's right in front of them. By bringing people together from all over the world and allowing these kids to form bonds with their international counsellors, we’re introducing the idea that those who are foreign to us, or those who may speak a little differently than us, are not people to be feared, but people to be embraced and share stories and develop life long friendships with. People who, really are, not so different from us. And that is so important for everyone to realise.

Why we do what we do is to make the world a better place and it can happen. But not without the J1 visa can we do what we counsellors love. #savej1

 

Niall has been to Chestnut Lake Camp in Beach Lake, Pennsylvania for two summers. 

 

Save the J1

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