Camp Outlook is an Ontario charitable corporation devoted to providing youths from the Kingston Area between 13 and 17 with an opportunity to experience wilderness camping.
Outlook was started in 1970 by Ron Kimberley, a Queen’s University Medical Student, who was a camping enthusiast and believer of the therapeutic value of the wilderness. For over 40 years of operation, Outlook has provided summer and winter camping services to youth free of charge through the generosity of volunteer staff, private donors, and fundraising drives.
What are our programs?
Nine to fifteen day canoe trips in Algonquin Park are conducted in the summer, involving a total of 130 to 140 campers each year. Volunteer staff members take groups of four to six youths on routes that can inspire an appreciation of the outdoors and a sense of accomplishment in learning camping and social skills. Over the years we have also developed Fall and Winter Camp programs. In fall and winter, Outlook conducts weekend trips as an additional camping experiences which include hiking, snowshoeing and shelter building, and maintaining and building upon summer contacts with campers.
Who are Outlook campers?
Almost all of our campers are initially referred to us by a social agency or school. We take a number of returning campers each year,
and some who have heard about Outlook from friends. Our recruiting seeks both male and female candidates who could especially benefit from a wilderness camping experience, either because of problems at home or at school, or simply because they could not otherwise afford to go on such a trip. Many campers qualify under more than one criterion.
Who are Outlook staff?
Most of our staff, but certainly not all, are Queen's students and alumni. Outlook staff are all volunteers. Although staff are not paid, they do benefit from the chance to camp all summer and learn from their experiences in leading youths in a small, self-reliant group. This format ensures that our staff are motivated by a strong commitment to the primary aim of Outlook: to share with young people a love of wilderness camping in a fun and cooperative social group.
Where does the money come from?
About one third of our budget is generated through donations solicited by Queen's Chaplain, Kate Johnson. Another third is contributed by agencies referring campers to Outlook. The balance comes from Outlook fundraising events, donations from various Queen's societies, and contributions from local businesses and corporate sponsors.
Core Ideology: We stand for the following Core Values:
- the worth
and potential of youth experiencing social, behavioural, economic or other challenges
- the therapeutic value of wilderness tripping
- the encouragement of individual ability and self-esteem in a unique environment
- the valuable contribution of volunteers to society through work with youth
Core Purpose: To encourage youth to realize their worth as individuals, their abilities, and their potential to achieve