Youth Development Leadership Programs
Youth Development and Leadership Training (YDLP) at IAWAH guides youth on a journey toward becoming great men and women; centered in Christ and grounded in His truth.
In these challenging programs, participants can expect to explore topics in:
- work habits and skills
- community life
- personal character development
- spiritual formation.
Participants generally begin at the end of Grade 8 with RISE and continue through CREW and ROOTs in subsequent summers. Year four of YDLP offers a cross-cultural experience called REACH where participants continue to enhance their leadership skills. While the programs are designed to build on each other there are no program completion pre-requisites.
Stages of Development
RISEis an introduction to “How Camp Works” though practical and fun experience. Campers will still participate in all the great activities of camp, but have an opportunity to lead some activities, programs and learn from our junior camp cabin leaders. Must have completed grade 8 to participate in this program.
CREWplants God's truth and introduces good work habits by developing norms and foundations. Structure, basic rhythms and supervision/modelling are key.
ROOTscultivates and builds personal character. Solid foundations, personal/team challenges, opportunities to practise and serve children/youth and exposure to risk are critical. Participants can choose to learn in one of three settings: Arts, Altitude or Wild. Regardless of the focus chosen, participants will receive the same Scripture-based curriculum and will put into practise what they learn in the context of their chosen area. The camp context provides an environment for accelerating and intensifying learning. The wilderness provides a natural structure and rhythm in which to learn.
REACH (Temporarily suspended due to COVID-19)enhances leadership skills in a cross-cultural context. Participants will further increase their understanding of service while working in partnership with the leadership team of our partner organizations: Camp La Cumbre in Costa Rica and Constance Lake First Nation Reserve in Ontario. Cross-cultural experiences challenge us to think of our role in God’s plan of redemption from a global perspective. Therefore, we will spend time learning about various ministries – including the ministry of camping – all within the context of the local culture and history.
Year 1 Rise Discover Potential
RISE is an introductory youth development leadership program for campers who have “been there, done that”, or for those looking for that little extra above and beyond the regular camp daily program. It allows for participants to experience all the great activities of camp, but also learn how to design and run a program, experience a bit of cabin leading while shadowing one of our Jumpstart camp leaders, and run an exciting activity. It’s an introduction to how camp works, learning through practical experience. RISE participants are still able to sign up for focus programs.
Dates & Rates
Are you ready to be challenged this year on RISE? Please view the 2021 YDLP Information Guide for more information.
Canoe Trip Packing List
Year 2 Crew Servant Leadership
CREW is an intensive 21-day program of leadership development with a focus on service for those who have completed a minimum of Grade 9. The program begins with a three day canoe trip, three days of training and then followed by two weeks of service at IAWAH.
- Work shifts in the areas of food service (dining room/dishes)
- The Crew Team will complete a unique Facility projects as well as general grounds work
CREW is designed so that individuals participate in daily structured Bible studies, reflective time alone with God, worship, play and rest. Those who complete the full program will earn 72 hours of volunteer service.
CREW Wild gives youth interested in outdoor adventure the opportunity to participate in a CREW program which focuses on adventurous aspects of leadership development. CREW Wild is the same length as the other CREW programs, but includes a week long canoe trip with added emphasis on learning outdoor skills. While not a necessary prerequisite for ROOTs Wild, CREW Wild is a great option for those who might pursue a path in outdoor adventure.
Not old enough for CREW? Check out our RISE program.
Dates & Rates
Are you ready to be challenged this year on CREW? Please view the 2021 YDLP Information Guide for more information.
Canoe Trip Packing List
Year 3 Roots Building Character
ROOTs is a 4-week leadership development program for those who have completed Grade 10. All participants begin with a week of group bonding through study of such topics as worldviews and culture, leadership theory, and spend time in exciting team building activities before dividing into one of three streams;
- ROOTs Altitude – Outdoor Experiential Education and Skills Development
- ROOTs Wild – Extended Canoe Trip
- ROOTs Amazing Race - Developing leadership skills through fun
Spend time learning mountaineering and camping skills and push your physical limits by hiking through the peaks of the Adirondack Mountains in Upper NY state. Participants will plan their routes and take turns leading the trip. (A canoe trip is not part of the ROOTs Altitude experience).
*Due to COVID-19, the Roots Altitude trip may take place in Ontario or Quebec.
Learn how to navigate challenging rivers and lakes in a remote wilderness area, while developing the skills needed to help lead a trip.
The ROOTs Amazing Race begins in Kingston with some exciting two-person team challenges that help establish your position in the race. Navigate the Rideau River in a Voyageur canoe, camp at the locks in style, take in the beauty of God’s creation and engage in friendly competition as teams “race” to the final destination – Camp IAWAH. Participants will spend time leading, learning through discussion, and as a group will be responsible for developing a daily video of the experience.
Upon return to IAWAH, the entire group prepares for a 5-day outreach opportunity to our local community, developing and running a day camp at IAWAH where participants can put into practice the leadership principles learned in the first three weeks of the program.
Dates & Rates
Completion of CREW is not a requirement to participate in ROOTs. To find out more information about pricing and program details, see the 2021 YDLP Information Guide.
Canoe Trip Packing List
Year 4 Reach Expanding Horizons
(This program has been temporarily suspended for summer 2021 due to COVID-19)
REACH is a program designed to expose and challenge participants in their understanding of Christian leadership in a cross-cultural context. For 2020 IAWAH is offering two opportunities: Costa Rica and Constance Lake First Nation. Both programs focus on gaining a sociological and theological understanding of our responsibility as Christ followers in helping to alleviate poverty.
In Costa Rica, the group will join the leadership team of Camp La Cumbre, as we prepare and assist in running a camp for youth from some of the most challenging communities of San José. During our second week, we will take on a physical challenge through an incredible hike from continental divide to the beautiful rain forest of the Pacific coast, finishing with a well-deserved break at the beach. We complete our time in San José, learning how God is working in that city through visiting and participating in various strategic ministries to students and the most vulnerable.
In Northern Ontario, our Constance Lake First Nation experience is a three week program where we first spend time living in the community to learn from the elders, community members and the chief. We will be serving where needed as determined by the community, which could involve participating in youth programs and preparing to service the children of the community by leading a day camp alongside community leaders. We will spend time visiting historically significant places in the region, and finish with some canoeing and hiking in and around Lake Superior national park - another significant area to the First Nation people of the region .
It is important that our young people understand the challenges that our nation faces with its First Nations people, to rid ourselves of negative stereotypes and understand what part we can play in healing broken relationships. IAWAH will be building upon a long-standing relationship that Bethel Church Kingston has with Constance Lake and is entering upon a personal invitation of the Band’s Chief. Previous canoe tripping experience is not required.
Be prepared for a learning experience like no other!
Dates & Rates
Must have completed grade 11. Please see the 2021 YDLP Information Guide for more information.
- Completion of CREW or ROOTs is not a requirement.
- For REACH Costa Rica: Spanish Language is an asset but not required.
- Participation in REACH is not a requirement to work as staff at IAWAH. You may work as staff for part of the summer or not at all and still participate in either of these programs.
Application Process for REACH:
- Complete all sections of the REACH application by April 1st for Costa Rica and May 1st for Constance Lake. Applications will be processed in order of date received and will be taken as soon as REACH registration opens in early November each year. As space is limited in each program, there is an advantage to applying early.
- Each REACH applicant will be screened for suitability including contacting the references listed. Each applicant will then be notified if they have successfully made it to the interview stage. We will begin the interview process in December and will continue to interview applicants until the program is filled.
- Upon meeting all the requirements, successful candidates will be informed within 2 weeks after the interview at which time a non-refundable deposit of $200 is required. For those accepted to the Costa Rica program, a second non-refundable deposit of $600 is due April 1st in order to book flights.
- For REACH Costa Rica, a mandatory orientation weekend will take place in the spring to inform participants about cultural expectations, planning for the camps and how to raise prayer support.
'CREW changed my life for the better and it came at just the right time to help me through a dark place.' Camper
We love the seeds of faith that the camp fosters and nurtures. The tween age is particularly challenging... and we feel the more exposure to positive Christian role models, the better.
Our kids love IAWAH – and I am grateful for the fruit it has borne in their lives. It has been foundational to their faith.
My eyes have been opened to what seems to be an emerging distinctive of our ministry – leadership development...God has given IAWAH an incredible opportunity to raise up leaders.
Tim Edwards, former Director
CREW had such a positive direct impact on our daughter...Please know the you are making a difference the lives of young people and how beautifully you are preparing them for the Kingdom.
CREW changed my life for the better and it came at just the right time to help me through a dark place.