About Us

MEET THE STAFF

YMCA Camp Benson

GWYN "MAMA G" BEMIS

Camp Director

Gwyn aka, Mama G, came to YMCA Camp Benson in the Spring of 2017 and brings over 20 years of Human Resource Management and Training Facilitation to YMCA Camp Benson. She provides leadership to all of the YCB Staff Members and assists them implementing a safe, fun, and educational experience for all her campers and guests. Contact Gwyn at [email protected]

WHO WE ARE

GENERATIONS OF SUMMER CAMP MEMORIES

For more than 90 summers, YMCA Camp Benson has provided engaging, positive and life changing overnight summer camp programs for boys and girls ages 6-17. This has been accomplished through innovative, value-based programming supervised by experienced and caring staff members in a wonderful natural setting. Summer camp is what we do and summer camp is who we are.

YMCA Camp Benson’s 113-acre campus has been home to countless friendships, life lessons and summertime memories for generations of campers, earning YCB a reputation as one of the premier overnight summer camps in Illinois.

YMCA CAMP BENSON MISSION

At YMCA Camp Benson we truly believe in the potential of every child. Our mission is to build stronger campers by creating opportunities in the outdoors for personal growth and character development. YMCA Camp Benson’s summer camp program is designed to help campers discover who they are, who they want to be, and then – with the support of our nurturing staff – build the confidence and character to actually become that person.

OUR GOALS

OUR YMCA CORE VALUES

Caring, Honesty, Respect, Responsibility, Dedication and Inclusivenss are the six core values that serve as the foundation of everything we do here at YCB. These are the character values we strive to instill in our campers and staff through intentional programming and relationship building.

HELP US GROW

Give Today, For Tomorrow

Thank you for choosing to donate to YMCA Camp Benson. With your support, we can make sure that everyone who needs the Y has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Together, we have a meaningful and lasting impact on our community, one person at a time.

Together We Can Make a Difference

At the Y, strengthening community is our cause. Every day, we work side-by-side with friends like you to make sure that everyone, regardless of age, income or ability can grow and thrive through Y programs and services.

Make A Positive Impact

You are a partner with the Y in this mission of helping those less fortunate. Rest assured, your investment will reap dividends to help a struggling child or family for the rest of their life. Your gift will make a positive impact to change a life forever.

SAFETY & ACCREDITATION

PROVIDING A SAFE, FUN AND HEALTHY CAMP EXPERIENCE

The physical and emotional safety of our campers is our number one priority at YMCA Camp Benson. Our camper’s safety and well-being is at the forefront of our minds at all time at camp, from hiring staff to designing new programs to planning Staff Training. As an American Camp Association (ACA) Accredited Camp we proudly meet all of the standards set forth by ACA Concerning staff screening, supervision ratios and topics to be covered during Staff Training. To view these standards, click here.

Our summer camp staff are hired based on their strong character and high ideals. Summer camp staff are carefully selected to ensure that we have a diverse group of skilled and responsible staff who care about children. Before campers arrive, all of our summer camp staff are trained in safety, counseling techniques, conflict resolution, child development, bullying prevention and camp policies and procedures. Our staff understand that his or her job is not just to lead activities, but also to help campers develop life skills while always looking out for their well-being.

Our summer camp staff undergo extensive background and reference checks before being hired. All staff are Red Cross First Aid and CPR certified.

Our one-to-five staff-to-camper ratio makes sure all campers have the best camp experience possible.

Here is an example of how we keep our campers and staff safe. One of the first things that we do during a session of camp is gather all of the campers and staff together for an orientation on camp rules and expectations. During this orientation we discuss importance of safety at camp and explain how our camp rules and expectations are in place to keep us all safe. All campers are taught that they should never wonder around camp alone and that they must always travel in a TRUDDIE (aka a group of three). Here we also talk about how it is each camper’s responsibility to look out for the emotional and physical safety of one another.

YMCA Camp Benson is also proud to partner with Praesidium to ensure that camp is safe environment for all children. To learn more about the partnership between YMCAs in the state of Illinois and Praesidium click here.

HEALTH & MEDICAL NEEDS

YMCA Camp Benson has a well-equipped Wellness Center that is staffed by our Camp Nurse 24 hours a day. We also have a Registered Nurse on-site daily who directs and oversees all the actions of our Camp Nurse. Our Camp Nurse takes care of all camper medical needs, including medication management. All camper medication must be checked in with our medical staff during Check-In. The camper Health History Form must be completed two weeks prior to the start of your camper’s session.

AMERICAN CAMP ASSOCIATION ACCREDITATION

YMCA Camp Benson is proud to be an American Camp Association
(ACA) accredited camp. The ACA nationally recognizes overnight
summer camps that meet the highest standards, focusing on health, safety, and program quality. The accreditation process has over 300 safety and quality standards to which we must adhere.

We do not have to be an ACA Accredited Camp, but we have chosen to be because the safety and well-being of our campers is our top priority. To learn more about the American Camp Association and the value of Accreditation click here.

JOIN THE YMCA CAMP BENSON TEAM

YMCA Camp Benson has a well-equipped Wellness Center that is staffed by our Camp Nurse 24 hours a day. We also have a Registered Nurse on-site daily who directs and oversees all the actions of our Camp Nurse. Our Camp Nurse takes care of all camper medical needs, including medication management. All camper medication must be checked in with our medical staff during Check-In. The camper Health History Form must be completed two weeks prior to the start of your camper’s session.