The Swallowdale Spirit / by CISS CANADA

I first came to Swallowdale Camp at the age of 14 years old. It was a little bit of luck, my mom found out about it in a catalog as we were looking for linguistic trip. I had little idea what to except but I went for it. When I got back in France 3 weeks later, my parents were almost surprised about how thrilled and excited I was about my stay there. So I went back the year after that, still as a camper, and then as an LIT and twice as a counselor. These were the greatest summers of my life, but why?

There was something more than the many great and fun activities in Swallowdale. I would call it the “swallowdale spirit”. It is quite hard to explain how it feels, but I remember picturing the camp as a “bubble of happiness”, between a lake and a forest. Although the days were nicely planned, there was always moments for spontaneity. Before meals, at bed time, during activities or waiting in line to get in the waterfront.. any moment was an opportunity to have some fun, joke around and play, with other campers or counselors. It was almost impossible not to have a smile on your face all day long. And I felt this way both as a camper and as an LIT and counselor. These years really changed me, I learned about myself, about my skills and abilities. It gave me a thirst for adventure and challenges and it was, as a Frenchman, the best way to discover Canada. I can’t count how many amazing people from all over the world I met and bounded with.

I’ll always remember this place as another home, and I encourage new camper to live the same experience I lived!

-Vincent L. 

Years at Camp: 2010-2014
Age at Camp: 14
Country: France