As you approach the gates of Highlander, your son looks out the car window, taking it all in, and flashes a nervous smile as you ask how he’s doing.
You try to act calm and confident on his behalf, reassuring him that he’s about to have the time of his life though internally you’re full of questions. What if he’s different from the other boys? What if they don’t make sure to include him?
Our culture demands that young men compromise on their own personal standards and beliefs in order to imitate the qualities in others that have been deemed more valuable. At Camp Highlander, however, we promote integrity over insincerity. We believe that every boy has been uniquely created by God with a personality and a purpose all his own. We seek to help each and every camper grow into the young man he was designed to be through personal integrity and relational sincerity.
And it all starts with our cabin unit. The moment your son sets foot on the mountain, he’s home. His two cabin counselors —full of energy and encouragement and excitement— immediately welcome him into the Highlander family. As he enters his cabin for the first time, he’s greeted by nine other smiling campers who quickly transform from 10 individual members into one unified unit. From those first few moments, a brotherhood has formed.
After lunch and some time to unpack and settle into their bunk, campers head to their first activities of the summer! The next few hours are filled with a variety of activities which provide just a small sample of all that Camp Highlander has to offer. As returning campers share their favorite memories from years past and new campers anticipate the many adventures that lie ahead, the bonds continue to grow.
Before long, all of camp settles down in front of a roaring campfire as everyone is officially welcomed into the Camp Highlander family. Your son, his cabin mates, and their counselors sit side-by-side with flickering shadows of campfire dancing across their faces. Through the pops and hisses of the fire, and the strums of a guitar, an undeniable sense of community washes over them.
Back in the cabin, as sleep begins to beckon, every cabin unit sits down for a cabin talk led by each pair of counselors. Hopes, dreams and fears are shared. Questions are answered, goals are set, and encouragement is freely offered and eagerly received. A cabin pledge —meant to determine how this newly formed brotherhood will live together, work together, and share in new experiences together— is agreed upon and accepted. This pledge is each boys’ declaration that he will, with full integrity and for as long as he calls this mountain home, dedicate his very best efforts to improving himself, encouraging his cabin mates and loving the entire Highlander family.