What is Camp Quest?
Camp Quest UK provides residential (sleepaway) summer camp experiences across the UK. We offer a wide range of activities including sports, crafts, games, swimming, music, drama, and camp fires. In addition to the more typical summer camp activities, Camp Quest offers an educational program focused on critical thinking, ethics, scientific inquiry, philosophy, and religion.
Camp Quest is open to all children and teenagers aged 7-17, and tends to attract families from humanist, atheist and agnostic backgrounds. However, we are open to all, no matter what you believe. Our goal is to provide a place where children can explore their developing worldviews, ask questions, and make friends in a supportive and safe environment that prioritises figuring things out for yourself using reason over reaching the “correct” conclusion.
What is humanism?
An outlook or system of thought attaching prime importance to human rather than divine or supernatural matters. Humanist beliefs stress the potential value and goodness of human beings, emphasize common human needs, and seek solely rational ways of solving human problems.
Are the campers religious or non-religious?
The camp is based on humanist principles and seeks to promote tolerance through the understanding that there are many ideas in the world. Camp Quest’s aim is to get campers thinking and asking themselves questions, while equipping them with the tools to go off and come to their own conclusions about a wide range of topics. There is no dogma or agenda – an atmosphere of inquiry is created and the campers are encouraged to discuss their ideas.
We welcome all children, from all backgrounds. We fully expect that a lot of children simply don’t quite know what they believe just yet (just like many adults!), and we encourage open debate. We try encourage the children to explore for themselves what they believe, rather than telling them what is true, or what they should label themselves as.
Both the parents and the children wishing to attend camp should understand that the ethos of Camp Quest is to discuss and question ideas. Our aim is to inspire children to leave with questions and a keen interest in finding the answers.
What is the invisible unicorn challenge all about?
The centrepiece of the camp’s approach is encouragement of critical thinking and an introduction to logical fallacies by retelling the story of two invisible unicorns that inhabit Camp Quest. Campers are told that two invisible unicorns inhabit the camp, who cannot be seen, heard, touched, smelled, tasted, cannot hurt you, do not eat and leave no mark.
An ancient book handed down for countless generations offers proof that the unicorns exist, though no one is allowed to see this book. Campers are invited to prove that the unicorns do not exist.
Where and when is Camp Quest?
For information on our 2016 summer camps, please click here.
How much does Camp Quest cost?
We run a short and a long camp, and this is reflected in the prices. In 2016, our shorter camp will cost £160 (£50 deposit required upon registration) and lasts 3 nights. Our longer camp costs £375 (£100 deposit required) and lasts 6 nights. Costs are inclusive of all meals, activities and accommodation but does not cover transport to and from the site.
Is financial aid available?
Thanks to generous donations from individuals and organisations we are able to offer reduced rate places for those families who would not otherwise be able to afford the cost of camp. Please contact us if you have any further queries.
We are able to offer all parents the opportunity to pay in instalments, so please mention this when you make your booking.
How many kids generally attend? What are their age brackets?
We welcome children between the ages of 7-17. We usually try to have a younger and an older camp so that the children get have a camp best designed to their level – this depends on numbers and venues each year. Our younger camp tends to have 16-20 children and the older camp usually has 36-40 attending.
Who are the staff and how are they chosen?
Camp Quest is run by a team of volunteers. To find out more about them click here.
The volunteers are responsible for organising the camps and running sessions, but all on-site physical activities (e.g. climbing, high ropes) are run by the qualified centre staff.
Our leaders range in age from 18 to 73. All our volunteer staff are DBS checked (enhanced criminal background check), and any volunteers that come from outside the UK are background checked in their own country.
Are there other Camp Quests outside the UK?
I want to contact someone about including Camp Quest in a media piece or publication that I am working on. Who should I contact?
Please email email@example.com if you are seeking information for media or publication purposes. We are happy to talk with you, or put you in touch with others who can give you the information you are looking for.
I want to help, what can I do?
There are three main ways to help out Camp Quest. The first is to donate. Donations help primarily by allowing low income families to pay a reduced rate for the camps. We believe financial hardship should not be a reason for a young person to miss out on Camp Quest. If you would like to donate, please contact Dianna at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The second way to help is to volunteer by becoming a leader at a current Camp Quest, or helping to start a new Camp Quest. In 2016 we will run a junior camp in Norfolk and the senior camp near Doncaster. At present we don’t have the resources to run more camps in other locations, but we are always on the lookout for enterprising people to help us expand. If you think you have what it takes, get in touch.
You can also help us out by spreading the word about Camp Quest, or helping us with projects throughout the year. Get in touch if you can offer your skills (or would like to write about us on your blog).