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One benefit of summer camp is the opportunity for a child to develop his or her independence while in a safe and supportive community. Many successful adults look back on their camp experience as a fundamental building block in their personal development.
At the same time, developing independence at camp can require a child to overcoming a degree of homesickness. Homesickness can be as simple as feeling uncomfortable in new surroundings and/or with new children and adults. Sometimes it can be more pronounced and last for several days with tears and heart-wrenching letters home. Whatever the cause or the symptoms, overcoming homesickness can be (and normally is) a good thing, and part of the maturing process for children and teenagers.
To help parish clergy, parents, and children deal with homesickness, the Office of Youth & Young Adult Ministries recommends this useful guide: Preventing Homesickness.