Coniston is not just a Camp. It is a community. It is this community that enables us to deliver our unique program every summer, building campers into the leaders of tomorrow and continuing to support these campers after they leave Coniston.
In 2023 our year-round team was made up of 13 individuals. During the summer months, we added another 210 staff members to run Camp. And on top of that another 207 members of the Coniston community volunteered their time to help Camp be a better place. It is because of the generosity of these people that the Coniston experience continues to improve and our community continues to grow.
Coniston is lucky to have this huge group of volunteers who are willing to help Camp in all different ways. Firstly, we have a group of 50 Coniston Ambassadors who volunteer their time all throughout the year. This group is made up of Camp alumni, parents, grandparents and summer staff. This dedicated group of ambassadors volunteer their time in multiple ways; hosting Coniston events, writing personal thank you notes to our community, helping in fundraising efforts and volunteering on summer check-in days. They are key to sharing our message with the further community. One of these ambassadors is Sherm Horton who works closely with Coniston as our webmaster!
In spring, we ran two career development events in NYC and Boston. At these events, we had panels made up of Coniston volunteers from all different professional backgrounds including law, teaching and TV production. They shared their wisdom and offered advice to our younger alumni community who were in the early stages of their careers.
Another group of volunteers that had a wonderful impact on our community in 2023, were Coniston tutors. They were a group of Camp alumni who gave back by offering virtual learning support to school-aged campers.
For the past two years, we have hosted a volunteer work day at Coniston to help us get ready for campers to arrive. This day involves a huge clean up of Camp, sweeping cabins, setting up boating activities, moving picnic benches and setting up tents. Volunteer work day makes such an incredible impact on Camp and is something we look forward to every summer. The group of volunteers who come each year are from all different eras of Coniston, from the 70s to the 2010s! It is wonderful to see so many Coniston alumni come together and connect while helping us set up for our campers to have the best summer. At the end of volunteer work day, our alumni have made the tradition of teaching our new international staff members the Class-A Clap!
We have also had other organizations come to Coniston to help us with Camp maintenance. Hypertherm and King Arthur Baking Company employees have been visiting Coniston regularly over the past few years to volunteer their time!
Volunteering can come in all different forms. This summer, we were very lucky to have had some volunteer musical guests visit Coniston. Hans Williams and Brooks Hubbard, both Coniston alum and talented rising musicians, performed for our campers during evening programs. The Rock Academy Woodstock Showband also put on a show for us! These wonderful musical performances were a summer highlight for our campers and staff.
Coniston has a board of directors made up of 16 members/emeritus who volunteer their time and knowledge to help Coniston thrive. Whether that is helping us set prices, implementing policy or working within one of our committees, this group of people are the heart and soul of Coniston. They care so much for the work we do and we simply couldn’t do it without them.
As mentioned above, Coniston is so much more than a summer camp. We are a community with so many wonderful people who care so much and are willing to help in any way they can. Thank you to our 2023 volunteers who made YMCA Camp Coniston shine.
If you are interested in volunteering for Coniston or becoming a Coniston Ambassador please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.