We receive many questions about Ajawah each year. We’ve pulled together some of the most frequently asked questions below.
In addition please review the 2023 Parent and Family Handbook.
Camp policy on illness, injury and mental health can be found here
What to Bring? 2023 Suggested Packing List
The most frequent question we receive is this:
How do I know if my child is ready for overnight camp?
Ajawah offers overnight camp experiences for children age 7-17.
Remember that each child is an individual. A seven-year-old who has spent the night with grandparents often may be able to attend camp for two weeks with no problem. But this may not be the case for a twelve-year-old who has never spent a night away from home. You know your child best. Only you can determine when the timing is right. Below are some questions to consider as you make your decision.
- Has my child participated in sleepovers?
- Children who have spent two or more nights away from home are good candidates for overnight camp. Positive experiences and overall enjoyment are readiness indicators.
- Should I involve my child in determining camp readiness?
- Yes! Involving your child in the decision-making process will reduce anxiety about going away to camp. Begin by talking about your child’s interests and personality. Identify camp programs that are a good match. Together, explore the camp options and review the brochures, websites and videos. Learning about the camp experience ahead of time allows you to create positive expectations.
- Am I ready for this important step in my child’s development?
- Your confidence in a positive overnight camp experience will be contagious. If you present camp as a wonderful experience and opportunity, your child is more likely to be a successful camper. Separating for a first-time camp experience is usually harder for parents than it is for children, who quickly forge fast friendships and adapt to the routine and spirit of camp.
Other Frequently Asked Questions:
What should I bring?
Camper packing lists will be sent to campers several weeks prior to camp start.
This will include some new items specific for 2021 for COVID-19 consideration.
(link) Girls Camp packing list
(lnk) Boys Camp packing list
Is there anything we shouldn’t pack? (electronics, food etc)
- Electronics (including cell phones, music players and portable game systems).
- Play weapons, BB-guns or guns of any kind.
- A small pocket knife is allowed for scouting activities, but campers need to attend safety training or present their knife safety badge to use a knife at camp. “Butterfly” knives and long-blade sheath knives are not allowed.
- Food. Having food of any kind in the tents attracts mice, squirrels, raccoons and other animals. Any food found will be confiscated by camp staff.
Should campers bring money?
On opening day, we ask for a deposit from each camper to set up their account in the trading post. Campers will not have any other need for money during camp. Please leave it at home.
Is financial assistance available?
Yes, each year we have a certain number of Camperships available. Our goal is that no camper is denied the Camp Ajawah experience for financial reasons. The financial assistance forms are available under the downloadable forms section on this page or click here.
Is there Laundry Service?
There is no laundry service at camp. There is a laundromat close by in case of emergencies. It is best if campers bring enough clothes to last an entire session. Please see the suggested packing list.
What if my child has a special diet or food allergies?
If your child has a food allergy or intolerance, we work to offer substitutions. We do not make modifications for food preferences.
Camp Ajawah cannot guarantee campers or staff will not come in contact with foods he/she may be allergic to. Because we eat family style and have cookouts, it is our expectation that by sending your child to camp you are saying your child has knowledge of their diet and can manage their food choices. If your child has a severe allergy or dietary restriction, contact the camp directors to discuss if Camp Ajawah is properly equipped to manage it.
Can I send Mail/Packages?
Mail is extremely important to campers. Writing to your camper can make a world of difference. When writing mail, please keep your letters cheerful, and avoid mentioning how much your camper is missed at home.
Mail should be sent to:
21600 Zodiac Street NE
Wyoming MN 55092
Please allow approximately four days for mail to travel in either direction. Even express mail takes up to three days to arrive, so please plan accordingly. If you send any correspondence via overnight or other priority mail services, please indicate a waiver of the signature requirement to expedite delivery. Failing to do so can increase delivery time by up to two days.
Your camper will be encouraged, but not required, to write home. Don’t be surprised if you do not get many letters, though, as camp is a very busy place! Pre-stamped and addressed envelopes or postcards are a great way to make it easier for campers to write home. Stamps are available at the Trading Post.
Packages may be sent to the address above, or dropped off at the reception desk at Westminster Church, where they will be picked up Monday and Thursday mornings.
PLEASE DO NOT SEND FOOD CARE PACKAGES! Having food in the tents attracts raccoons, mice, chipmunks and other animals into your camper’s living area. Please respect camp policy and do not send packages of food to your camper. All packages will be opened with staff present. Any food sent to camp will be confiscated. Please make sure friends and family are aware of this policy as well.
Can I call or visit my camper?
With only a single phone line available, we cannot allow campers to make or receive phone calls. If you would like to hear how your camper is doing, you may call our office and request an update and we can arrange a time for a counselor or the camp director to get back to you. Campers may not bring cellular phones to camp. If they are found, they will be confiscated and will be available for pickup at Headquarters the last night. In a family emergency situation, arrangements can be made to connect with your child.
There are no visiting times for families during camp. Seeing family members can trigger homesickness for your son/daughter and other campers.
Please do not show up at camp unannounced. It is very disruptive to camp programming and can feel uncomfortable for campers to see unrecognized people on camp property. If you need to drop something off or your child needs to leave for any period of time, please contact the Camp Director to make arrangements.
Is there a one week option?
Traditionally, Ajawah only offers two week sessions. Our experience has shown that a duration of two weeks give the campers the best amount of time to experience camp and develop friendships and skills.
NOTE: for 2021 only, we are offering smaller, 1 week sessions to accomodate COVID-19 adjustments. We will return to 2 week sessions in 2022.
What if my child gets homesick?
Often, homesickness lasts only until the camper becomes adjusted to the camp schedule. Our staff members are trained to aid campers in becoming adjusted as quickly as possible. However, if you suspect your camper may experience some homesickness, you can help his or her transition by saying goodbye promptly during the first day of camp.
Set your camper up for success!
- Please refrain from making a fuss or from suggesting that your camper might become homesick while in his or her presence.
- Please avoid telling your child they can call home if they are feeling sad or missing home. Simply mentioning this as an option to her will likely increase concerns and anxiety. Phone calls usually intensify homesick feelings and increase the camper’s potential for leaving camp early. Please know that the directors will contact you immediately if your child is having difficulties adjusting to camp, becomes ill or has any other significant issues.
- Please do not tell your son/daughter that if they are homesick that you will just come get them. This sets campers up for more difficulty getting through homesickness.
Please note that with mail delivery times, it is quite common for parents to get a homesick letter 4-5 days after camp starts. By the time you get this letter, your camper has almost always settled in and adjusted and is having the time of their life. If your son/daughter is struggling more than the typical camper we will be in contact with you.
Can I request my child be in a tent with friends?
For 2021, we are attempting to honor these requests to keep friends together in our small-group “pods”. Please indicate your campers friends name at time of registration.
Typicallly, We try our best to honor such requests, but cannot guarantee these placements, particularly for groups of three or more campers or for groups with a large range of age. Some first-time campers request to be paired with a friend or sibling, but most returning campers know that wherever they’re placed they’ll have friends inside of their tent and nearby.
Have a question that isn’t answered here?
Please call the Ajawah Registrar at (612) 332-3421 X237, or email Ajawah Registrar at Ajawah@wpc-mpls.org.
You can play a key role in helping your child make a successful adjustment to camp. Here are some suggestions that may help:
Don’t… pre-program your camper for homesickness by telling them any of the following:
- “You’re going to be homesick.”
- “If you don’t like it, give me a call and I’ll come and pick you up.”
- “Just try it for a week and then I’ll come get you.”
- “I’m really going to miss you.”
- “You can call me any time”
Don’t… write letters saying…
- …What a great time you’re having at home.
- …What a great time brothers/sisters/friends are having at home.
- …How much you miss them.
Don’t… visit your child.
It can be hard on a camper and hard on his camp friends to have a parent drop in.
Do… pre-program your campers for success by telling them…
- …How much fun they are going to have.
- …How much fun you had at camp, at the lake, etc, when you were a kid.
Do… send them a lot of mail: crazy post-cards, etc.
- … Tell them “nothing’s going on at home. All the neighbor kids are gone on
vacation. It’s real dead around here”
- … Tell them how you envy them for all the fun you know they’re having at
Given the long relationship between Ajawah and Scouting, our code of conduct is based on many of the components of The Scout Law. Campers and staff are expected to respect the rights and dignity of each other and their surroundings when they are participating in our programs. To read the full policy and violations policy, please click here.
Health and Safety
Daily medical care is provided by the Camp Health Provider in accordance with standing orders from our Camp Medical Director. Medical staff are available 24 hours a day in the Infirmary. Physician consultation is available 24 hours a day.
Anything taken to treat or manage a condition or symptoms is considered medication. All medications must be kept in the Infirmary, campers are not allowed to keep medication in their cabin, including pain relievers, vitamins, and other over-the-counter medications. (The camp Health Provider may make an exception for back-up inhalers for asthma and prescription dermatological creams). Medications may only be taken in the presence of the Infirmary staff and are typically given after breakfast, lunch, dinner and before bedtime.
All medications should be in their original containers, and placed in a bag labeled with your camper’s name. Medications with dose and time they are taken must be listed on the camper’s health form. Please double check that you have enough medication for the entire session at camp (and a few extra doses are always a good idea just in case)!
The Infirmary staff may administer other nonprescription medications according to our standing orders if needed by your camper during their stay, provided you have not indicated an allergy to such medications on the Medical Form. You do not need to send over the counter medications not expected to be taken on a daily basis as these are stocked in the infirmary.
Illness and Injury
If your camper shows any symptoms of illness before coming to camp, please notify us.
First aid kits are kept in all program areas as well as in the campers’ living areas, and are also carried on hikes and overnight campouts.
For non-emergency medical treatment, campers are taken to the infirmary, where minor first aid can be administered. Parents will be contacted if their child spends the night in the infirmary.
Please review the camp policy on illness, injury and mental health here
Chronic Medical Conditions and Camp
Please note that Camp Ajawah is a physically active, highly independent camp setting. If your child has medical problems that you are unsure can be handled in this type of a camp setting, please contact the Camp Director who will put you in contact with the Camp Medical Director to discuss their specific case.
Because some medications take 4-6 weeks to reach a therapeutic level, please speak with a director if your child’s medication has been altered within two months of the start of camp. Additionally, ADHD medications can have the same benefits for your camper in the camp community as it does in school. Helping your child focus on activities or diminish impulsive behavior in social situations could give the same advantage to succeed at camp.