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Fresh Air Fund - Seven Mile Beach

What could be more exciting for a child than to spend two weeks at camp in a foreign city meeting new friends from a variety of cultures and ethnicities? This summer, a group of Caymanian kids will trade lazy, tropical days for hiking in the woods, sleeping under the stars and seeing a little bit of big city life at no cost to the child’s family!

The five Fresh Air Fund camps in upstate New York are set among lakes, ponds, streams, hiking trails and wooded areas. While at camp, the kids will experience camp traditions such as swimming in lakes, learning about outdoor survival, boating and fishing, hiking, music and dance and photography. And after camp, the kids will be escorted to some of New York City’s major landmarks!

Overseeing each camp is a professional director with many years of camping experience. Children are closely supervised by mature counsellors who are of college-age or older and every staff member is carefully screened and trained for a summer of working at camp. They are responsible for six youngsters each and work together in pairs. At night, counsellors sleep in the same cabin as their campers or in the cabin next door.

With limited space available, the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism collaborates with the Ministry of Education for assistance with identifying children that are not only deserving, but would greatly benefit from this wonderful opportunity.

Nominees for the camp must meet the following criteria:

  • Must be a Caymanian Citizen or have Cayman Status
  • Is between the ages of 8 and 12
  • Attains consistently high academic achievements
  • Is self-confident with a positive attitude
  • Is adventurous and would be open-minded to the experience
  • Is involved in wholesome extra-curricular activities for their school and/or community
  • Must be willing to be an Ambassador of the Cayman Islands while overseas
  • Agrees to relay their experiences and will participate in public relations upon returning from the camp
  • Has a valid passport with the ability to travel to the USA (or ability to secure visa if required)
  • Would be unable to afford such an opportunity other than through this initiative 
  • MUST have written parental consent to travel overseas and attend the camp

The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism takes every precaution necessary to ensure the safety of the children travelling to camp and are involved in escorting them safely to New York and in and around the city. Escorts will text the parents of each participating child at key points throughout their travels to notify them of their progress and reassure them of their safety.

Parents of the children chosen for camp are provided with a Project Charter Document outlining the background of the programme, flight and hotel confirmations and contact information of the escorts accompanying the children to and from camp.

The Cayman Islands Department of Tourism will organize any accommodations or meals required for the Fresh Air Fund children that occur before and after camp and while travelling.

As there is no place for your child to wash his or her clothing while at camp, you should pack enough sturdy and well-worn clothes for their 11 or 12 day stay. Parents are encouraged to write their child’s name on the tags of their clothing to prevent losing or misplacing them and to choose a suitcase and/or duffel bag that is easy for their children to carry on their own.

Please keep in mind that camp is usually hot during the day and cool at night. The following items are suggested:

  • Well-worn clothing for camp for up to 12 days (T-shirts, long-sleeve shirts, play pants, jeans, shorts, pajamas)
  • 1 dress shirt/blouse and slacks or dress (for last banquet dinner at camp)
  • Sturdy shoes/boots, sneakers (with laces) and socks; Shower shoes (flip flops)
  • Bathing suit or swimming trunks
  • Underwear
  • 1 jacket or warm sweatshirt
  • Toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, comb, hair care products (shampoo/conditioner)
  • Sanitary napkins/tampons (if needed)
  • 2 towels (one for swimming, one for bathing) and a washcloth
  • Raincoat and/or light jacket
  • Envelopes, postcards/paper, stamps, pens (Children do not have access to phones while at camp and are encouraged to write to their parents back home)
  • Re-useable water bottle
  • Disposable camera
  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • Insect repellent (lotion or pump spray, NOT aerosol spray)
  • Favourite teddy/toy (if applicable)
  • Medicine your child may need (i.e. allergy medicine, sinus medicine, asthma medicine); Parents should be mindful to send enough for the entire stay

Children do not need cash while at camp.

For more information about the Fresh Air Fund programme contact the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism at 345-949-0623 or email Rhonda Cornwall.