Northern California Wilderness Summer Camp Promotes National Environmental Education Week -- April 15th through 22nd, 2007; Camp Unalayee Participates in the Largest Organized National Environmental Education Event in U.S. History

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Camp Unalayee, a Northern California wilderness summer camp, becomes a partner in promoting National Environmental Education Week. Camp Unalyee encourages parents and children to get connected with nature by attending a wilderness summer camp.

As part of third annual National Environmental Education Week April 15-22, Camp Unalayee (Camp U) is encouraging parents and children to get connected with nature.

Some startling statistics:
Children who spend lots of time outdoors have longer attention spans than those who watch lots of television and play video games. (Human-Environment Research Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Last year less than one-third of our children participated in outdoor programs, attended summer camp or participated in outdoor service projects. (Pacific Forest and Watershed Lands Stewardship Council)

In the 1960s, 4 percent of U.S. kids were obese. Today that figure has quadrupled, to 16 percent.
(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

In fact, Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder has coined the term "nature-deficit disorder." In April 2005, The New York Times published an article describing Louv's concern that children these days are Growing Up Denatured. (1)

Each summer Camp U not only works to connect its campers with the wonders of nature but also provides them with a two-week wilderness experience that teaches self-sufficiency, self-reliance and ultimately builds confidence and nurtures a positive self-esteem.

Camp U is located in northern California's majestic Trinity Alps. Children age 10-17 are picked up in the San Francisco Bay Area and driven by bus to the campsite. Once their, live in small communities of 8-10 children, called tribes. Campers sleep beneath the stars, cook their own meals over an open fire, divvy up chores and hike out to a natural lake each day. The "Leave No Trace" philosophy teaches children an appreciation for nature. These personal competencies are reflected in the four "C's" of the camp community: compassion, contribution, commitment, and character. (2)

We think it's great that organizations and corporate America is "going green," added Lowell Fitch, director of Camp Unalayee. "We applaud and support their very important efforts but this is actually something we've been teaching our campers for more than 50 years."

Camp U offers camperships (camp scholarships) to families who need a helping hand in getting their children to camp. They believe that every kid should have the opportunity to go to summer camp.

Here is a letter from Sam a 13-year old Camp U camper who was there on a campership:
"I wish I could think of a word that would express how grateful I am that you made those amazing two weeks possible for me and other campers. Camp had been everything I wanted and more. I made more friends in two weeks then I normally do in a semester of school. (At Camp U) I learned the value of simplicity. As cheesy as it sounds I felt a definite sense of fulfillment."

There is still plenty of time to enroll for summer 2007. There is space in each of the three summer sessions.

Camp Schedule 2007
1st Session June 29 - July 13, 2007
2nd Session July 16 - July 30, 2007
3rd Session August 2 - 16, 2007

Camp U also offers a one-week session for families called Family Days. Family Days takes place from August 18-23, 2007 and offers families an opportunity to visit the camp and spend family time camping in a cooperative community atmosphere.

To learn more about Camp U, to find about about camperships or how to enroll, visit

Camp U representatives will be at the Saratoga REI store on April 21st from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
400 El Paseo de Saratoga
San Jose, CA 95130
(408) 871-8765
Please stop by to learn more about the camp.

About National Environmental Education Week
EE Week is launched by the National Environmental Education Training Foundation, in partnership with the Alliance to Save Energy, the National Arbor Day Foundation, the North American Association for Environmental Education and dozens of other non-profit organizations and local, state, and federal agencies, sponsored by Canon U.S.A., Inc.

Over 3 million students and 100,000 educators are anticipated to participate in the national program, culminating in over 5,000 Earth Day service projects and 50 million hours of learning by April 22, 2007. National Environmental Education Week will increase the educational impact of Earth Day by creating a full week of educational preparation, learning, and activities in K-12 classrooms, nature centers, zoos, museums, and aquariums. The focus of EE Week this year is on making students aware of energy: where it comes from, how much they use, and how they can take charge of its impact on the environment. Students will get involved in activities much like those that are offered at Camp Unalayee. These activities will encourage them to get out in nature, learn about the environment, and preserve natural resources.

About Camp Unalayee
Camp Unalayee was founded in 1949 in the coastal mountain range above Santa Cruz, California. Unalayee was originally started by the American Friends, and while an independent organization since 1956, the camp still holds peace, community and nature as high ideals. In 1960 the camp moved to its current location in the Trinity Alps of Northern California. In 1968 the lands around our property in the Shasta-Trinity forest were designated an official primitive area. In 1985 when the Trinity Alps Wilderness area was officially created our land holding was "grand-fathered" and allowed to remain private.

Our mission is to bring together children from all walks of life to learn the lessons of respect for nature and community, as well as sharing the joys of camping and backpacking.

After operating for over 50 years we still maintain close connections to our root values of diversity, community and simplicity. We practice the "Leave No Trace" wilderness ethics. Camp Unalayee operates as an independent private camp under as a non-profit 501(c)3 corporation. More information on Camp U can be found at

(1) Provided by the National Environmental Education web site
(2)Provided by the American Camping Association


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