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Cell Phone



With more and more youth having cell phones, we have realized the need to clarify Camp Highroad’s policy regarding campers having cell phones at camp. We recognize this is a tough issue! Some camps are moving toward being technology-inclusive, while other camps remain staunchly anti-technology. Camp Highroad has decided to continue our no cell phone policy for campers for several reasons:

Part of our mission is to “Provide an Intentional Place Apart.”

We want to create a place where campers can experience a break from the daily pressure of social media and the distractions of Netflix, YouTube & virtual gaming. In a culture where even adults struggle with phone-addiction, we’ve decided that the best way to create a place apart for our campers is to provide a 'cell phone free’ zone.

Many books and articles discuss the social benefits of periodically disconnecting from our devices.

In our technology-driven world, the practice of unplugging and connecting with others face-to-face is rare and valuable skill. Our hope is that by restricting access to the digital world, we will provide campers the opportunity to develop empathy, deepen their conversational skills, and experience genuine acceptance from their peers. These are all aspects of the Christian community we aim to cultivate at Highroad.

Studies have shown that our constant connectivity could negatively impact our ability for deep thought and our comfort with solitude.

Both of these play pivotal roles in a person’s spiritual development. By providing a cell-phone free zone at summer camp, we hope to create an atmosphere for youth to experience a deeper connection with God.

On a very practical level, we would be unable to monitor every moment of every camper’s cell phone usage during camp.

Not all social media or internet spaces are appropriate or safe for youth, and we would hate for Camp Highroad to be the place where your child was introduced to these websites. We have strict child-protection policies for everyone on-site; limiting internet access at camp assists with preventing abuse in the virtual world as well.

Finally, we have found that for some children, easy access to technology actually creates deeper homesickness.

Please know that if anything of concern with your child arises (such as homesickness, not eating, not connecting with their group, not feeling well, behavior issues) OR if your child feels a strong need to talk to you, one of our team leaders will contact you via phone to discuss.

Concerning photography:

We recognize that many people (ourselves included!) use our phones as cameras, and our cell-phone-free policy could feel limiting for campers who want to share their experience via pictures. We recommend purchasing a simple digital camera – these can be found for under $50 at Walmart – or a disposable camera, which are even cheaper. Alternatively, a child can bring an old smartphone without cellular or data capabilities to use as a camera (please note that your child may need to demonstrate the phone’s lack of connectivity).

A cell-phone free summer camp is a fantastic opportunity for your child to experience independence, develop empathy, and deepen their spiritual life in a safe, caring, and supervised environment. We ask parents for their help in creating this space for their children and fellow campers.

Please note that Highroad will not be responsible for any lost, stolen, or damaged electronic equipment, including cell phones, cameras, MP3 players, chargers, etc. Campers who choose to bring working cell phones to camp will be asked to leave their phone turned off at the bottom of their suitcase; if a camper cannot comply with our policy after one warning, the cell phone will be held in a locked box by our leadership team for the duration of camp, parents will be notified, and the cell phone returned during check-out.

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