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What is Camp Awakenings?

I’ve climbed an obstacle course taller than a ten storey building. I’ve danced on a chair in the middle of dinner and been squirted with water pistols. I’ve had to work blindfolded in a team of people I’ve never met before. I’ve heard real life stories from real people that have brought me to tears and changed the way I see the world. I’ve met new friends that I want to keep in touch with for the rest of my life. And that was just the first day.

Welcome to Camp Awakenings.

Camp Awakenings is an Australian youth development program for Year Nine students. Camp Awakenings is focused on building support networks for the participants through friendship and trust. Through self-belief, self-respect, a positive attitude and motivation, the participants develop and harness methods, tools and skills to counter the challenges faced by today's youth.

Camp Awakenings runs for the three days. During this time, the students participate in team building activities, as well as attend various sessions and presentations on youth related issues. They are challenged physically, mentally and emotionally throughout the program. Camp Awakenings provides its participants with a supportive environment to grow and develop. All participants learn and benefit from the camp in their own unique way.

Why?

The idea for Camp Awakenings came from the recognition that there was a lack of programs designed for the average student at the Year Nine stage.

How?

After obtaining the 1999-2000 Rotary Youth Award, Michael Weiser and Sandi Sieger gathered enough support to run the first Camp Awakenings in May 2001.

Since then, the camp has expanded in support from the Bendigo Bank

Who?

Camp Awakenings is coordinated by former and current youth leaders.

Camp Awakenings has a strong focus on selecting leaders who have a proven track record in the area of leadership and youth and clearly practice what they preach.

The coordination team of Camp Awakenings has extensive time and energy to expand and improve this program. The team has only scraped the surface with how they wish to benefit youth.

The potential for the Camp Awakenings team is only limited by the support it is provided by generous organisations, individuals  and corporate Australia; particularly Bendigo Bank Community Banks.

Where?

Camp Awakenings is currently held at two venues:

Camp Awakenings Mt Eliza

Regional Victoria Bendigo Bank 

After Camp Awakenings

Directly after the Camp, the leadership group remain in contact with participants to assist in further development and support. Approximately two months after the camp there is an opportunity for participants to come back together as a group and be involved in the ‘Recharge’ program.

As the name suggests this is a program to ‘Recharge’ past Camp Awakenings participants. This program will include workshops and practical sessions that give tools and skills to take home.

Participants of Camp Awakenings are given a range of opportunities to stay in touch with their new found friends.

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