Med-O-Lark seeks to supplement the home and school in providing children a fun, safe environment for social, mental and physical development. Med-O-Lark’s philosophy is that children thrive through individual choice and self-expression. Accordingly, Med-O-Lark’s elective structure and wide selection of activities allow campers the freedom to explore and grow through their experiences. Med-O-Lark’s accepting environment fosters a sense of inclusion, as well as a comfortable atmosphere where children can be creative.
Campers feel empowered to step outside of their comfort zones and discover more of themselves, all the while gaining confidence and self-esteem.
Med-O-Lark does not have inter-camp sports competitions, tournaments or color war, as most traditional camps do. There are no “best camper” awards or intra-camp competitions that result in campers competing against each other. Individual development and enrichment is promoted first and foremost, without competitive incentives.
At Med-O-Lark, community development is fostered at every turn. It is a community where everyone shares, accepts and cares for others. For example, each day, two camp-wide meetings are held. The purpose of these meetings is to build a supportive and nurturing community.
Med-O-Lark has a wide mix of campers and staff from many states and countries. Typically, more than a dozen countries are represented such as Great Britain, Australia, South Africa, Israel, Canada, Japan, Russia and many more. Med-O-Lark is a place for people of any ethnic, religious, national or racial background. It is coed, non-sectarian and diverse in every respect.
Among private camps, Med-O-Lark was at the forefront of changing the camp experience. It was among the first to become coed and introduce vegetarian options at meal time. It was the first to ban uniforms, color war and smoking on camp grounds. Long before other camps began doing so, Med-O-Lark embraced minority and international campers. Med-O-Lark’s commitment to fostering a pluralistic and non-competitive community continues to give it a unique place among summer camps in the United States.