S.W.i.M.

students working in ministry

Each summer, Camp Fowler invites about twenty five high school students to participate in our "Students Working in Ministry" Program (SWiM Program). SWiMs have a unique two week opportunity that includes one week of leadership training and one week of direct student ministry work.  This unique tri-fold experience allows the SWiM to be "camper", "trainee" and "student staff member". A SWiM experiences the ministry of Camp Fowler in a more interactive, dynamic and intensive way than simply as a registered camper.
  
There are two phases of the program. The first phase is a leadership training phase. In 2019, SWiM Training will take place over Memorial Day Weekend instead of during LEAD Week. Previously, we have used LEAD Week to provide SWiMs with training, but in Summer 2019, the New York State Public School Schedule goes a week longer, preventing us from offering LEAD Week. We will provide more information about the Memorial Day SWiM training program in early January. In short, students interested in being SWiMs do not need to sign up to come to camp as a camper in order to be a SWiM; they just have to complete the Memorial Day Training. Please contact Josey Beird (sjbeird@gmail.com) with any questions.

During the training phase, SWiMs are encouraged to learn and model christian leadership skills. Those skills are then applied later in the summer in the second phase of the program, when SWiMs come back to work with younger campers during one of our residential camp weeks. SWiMs participate in all aspects of camp during the the second phase of the program and are given more responsibility as young adult leaders. 

    
SWiMs have a unique perspective.  They are neither camper nor staff nor cabin counselor, but a bridge to all three.  A SWiM can experience camp through kitchen or maintenance work, or through any one of the program areas at Camp Fowler (recreation, waterfront, arts, or nature).  SWiMs volunteer to have the opportunity of working with 3rd through 9th graders. 

   
The Students Working in Ministry program advocates living simply, working in a faith community, and learning leadership skills for the future.  SWiMs receive 40 hours of community service, and engage in a variety of tasks necessary for the functioning of a summer camp.  SWiMs stay in a cabin and help to shepherd and encourage both the campers in that specific cabin as well as the entire group of campers at Fowler.  SWiMs have the opportunity to help lead camp programs and sessions, working side by side with the summer staff.

All of our SWiMs are supervised by our SWiM Coordinator the week they are working at camp.  They also work with the volunteer cabin counselor that is assigned to the same cabin.  SWiMs meet as a group on a daily basis to go over questions and concerns, and are evaluated after their week to help identify strengths and areas of growth. You can find our SWIM application below. We can't wait to work with you!