All God’s Children Camp is a 100-person, week-long camp consisting of recreational and arts programs for campers ages 8 to 12 from all communities, and for junior staff, or Junior Counselors, ages 15 to 20. Camp is held each year in August at the Claggett Center in Frederick County, Maryland. August 2019 marks the 24th year of All God’s Children Camp!
All God’s Children Camp brings together boys and girls from diverse socio-economic and cultural backgrounds in order to help them to enjoy and appreciate their differences. The children learn sharing skills, and how to relate to one another and the staff.
The all-volunteer staff includes former campers, parents, grandparents, young adults, and older adults. They all work to help the children interact positively in dorms, the dining room, small groups and in play areas. The children learn conflict resolution and build healthy relationships with one another and with staff.
Camp activities include: swimming, kayaking and canoeing, bike riding, hiking, campfires, berry picking, camping out, fishing, small group discussions, a talent show, a variety of arts and crafts, and an “outward bound” style ropes course. The children also play a variety of games, such as basketball, volleyball, soccer, and capture the flag between scheduled activities.
Youth Leadership Development
We provide a youth leadership program for our Junior Counselors (JCs), which fosters mutual understanding, respect and civic engagement among them. The JCs gain meaningful, hands-on leadership experience and skills in a unique and supportive environment. Through our Director of the Day and Activities Director of the Day experience, they not only learn but test their ability to organize, manage, and motivate their peers and the campers. They receive mentoring and constructive feedback throughout the week.
One of the unique aspects of our camp is that we not only provide a number of opportunities for these predominantly inner city kids to physically and mentally challenging activities such as the ropes course, kayaking down the Monocacy river, poetry workshops and hikes up Sugarloaf Mountain; we also allow our campers each day to choose their morning and afternoon activities they to pick the activities that they want to take on that day. Our staff encourages every camper to experience every activity throughout the week. However, if a camper, for instance really want to challenge themselves to pass the swim test by the end of the week, we give them the flexibility to choose swimming as an activity for multiple days. By not being prescriptive with the campers daily activities, they feel empower to create a camp experience that meets their specific needs.
We promote good nutrition and the challenges that young people face in trying to eat well in today’s world. We focus on providing young people (ages 8 to 20 years old) with access to tools and activities that are meant to education them, empower them to make better decisions about what they eat, and provide experience in cooking and preparation so that they can use what they have learned.
About the Claggett Center
The Claggett Center, originally a boys’ orphanage, is located in Frederick County near the Monocacy River and in the shadow of Sugarloaf Mountain – right in the heart of Civil War history. The Battle of the Monocacy, just five miles up the river from Claggett, was fought to keep the Confederate troops from overrunning the almost totally undefended Washington, D.C. General Lee Wallace and a small band of Union soldiers held the much larger Confederate army at bay for more than a day while Washington defenses were reinforced.
Today the Episcopal Conference Center at Claggett continues in the spirit imparted by founding Baker family by serving children and youth from throughout the Diocese of Maryland.