The American Institute for Foreign Study (Australia) Pty Ltd opened its Australian office in 1999 and began offering its Camp America and Au Pair in America programs to young Australians. In 2005, AIFS commenced offering inbound programs and currently facilitates cultural exchange programs for more than 2,000 young people.
Camp starts early so be prepared to forgo those sleep-ins until your days off.
You’ll need to get yourself ready and then make sure your campers are ready for breakfast – easier said than done! Joining campers for breakfast, you’ll have a big breakfast to prepare you for the day ahead.
Each day there are a variety of activities going on all over camp. Activity sessions will normally run for an hour and campers will move from one to the next. If you're hired by a camp to teach a particular activity, you will normally stay in your area to teach that activity to different groups throughout the day.
General Counsellors will move around with the campers and help them get involved in each activity. From the Waterfront to the Sports Fields; the Theatre to the Pool and all the way out to the Stables, there's always something happening anywhere you look!
Meal times are a lot of fun at camp as well as being pretty hectic. Counsellors will sit at the tables with the campers and will be responsible for collecting/serving the food.
Don't be surprised by spontaneous songs, chants and games that break out in the dining hall! It's a time for announcements or special mentions with the whole camp in one place. There are 3 meals served each day on camp and the great thing is - you don't have to cook them!
After dinner there is an evening activity that will involve the whole camp or large groups of the campers together i.e. boys and girls. This will be a slightly different activity that isn't on the regular schedule and will give you the chance to get involved in something a little out of the ordinary. It's time to be with the other campers and counsellors and end the day with a bang!
Evening activities can include things like; camp fires, socials, all-camp swim, pool parties, treasure hunts, theatre performances plus an opportunity to expel any excess energy the kids have before lights out.
Depending on your camp schedule, you're likely have some time off during the day. This may be an activity block or just a set time throughout the day.
You'll often work on a rotational system so there's always some Counsellors with the campers. On your time off you can often get involved in some of the activities on offer or just have a lie down and try catch up on some rest!
Alongside American and international counsellors, you'll be working directly with children, instructing or assisting them in a variety of different activities.