Free or Discounted Summer Camps for Military Kids
UPDATED MARCH 2016
When the kids are out of school for the summer, they’re ready for fun. They want to hang out with their peers and experience cool adventures. That's what summer camp was made for.
It may not feel like summer right now, but now’s the time to start thinking about registering your kids for summer camp. Thankfully, there are camps that are free or available at a reduced price just for military kids. (Please check back for updates throughout the Spring!)
American Wanderer Summer Camp offers 2-week sessions exploring America’s National Parks in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming for kids ages 11 to 17. Children of active duty, Reserve, National Guard, retired and former service members are all eligible to apply for their scholarship.
The Armed Services YMCA or ASYMCA offers junior enlisted families the chance to participate in family, youth, and teen camps year-round at their 34 branches and affiliates. These camps and other free programs, in partnership with groups like the USO and Newman’s Own Foundation, aim to provide support to military families. Camps and other programs vary by location, so check with your local ASYMCA for more details.
Camp Corral is a free one-week camp for military kids aged 8 to 15. Although it is open to all military children, priority is given to children of wounded, disabled or fallen service members. There are 23 camps in 19 states. The week is filled with fun outdoor activities like canoeing, swimming, fishing, arts and crafts, ropes course challenge, archery, and horseback riding. The week also encourages campers to create friendships and bond with other kids who share similar family situations.
Teen Adventure Camps are for military teens aged 14 to 18. These camps, which take place throughout the country, are scheduled through February 2017 at little to no cost. They include fun outdoor activities whitewater rafting, hiking, rock climbing, winter camping, backpacking, mountain biking.
Teen Summer Camp Scholarship Program or SCSP is intended to provide Navy teens with specialty camps that promote healthy, lifelong hobbies, while making friends and exploring the world. The camps provide teens with opportunities to reduce stress and stay active over the summer. Camps include sailing in Annapolis, scuba diving in Florida, hiking in Hawaii, and even camps overseas in Japan and Europe.
Click here for the application. Application deadline is April 8, 2016.
Thanks to the National Military Family Association, Operation Purple Camp supports military children by offering a free week of camp. These camps help military kids learn coping skills and connect them with other kids going through the same things. The camps are open to all military children of all ranks and services.
Your Local Military Installation
Don’t forget about the youth programs offered at your local military installations. Many bases have summer camps for kids, as well as camps throughout the year during times like Spring Break when kids are out of school. Click here to contact your nearest installation for more information.
What are your favorite summer camps for military kids?
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