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Kupugani Blog

Help Teens Develop a Healthy Understanding of Sex

At Camp Kupugani, our Midwest overnight summer camp near Chicago and Madison, we strive to empower our campers by having them get reliable life information from good sources.  As a recent Washington Post article (at this link) posited: “In a culture where abstinence-only programs have taken the place of real sex education, and where many teens lack the resources to prevent pregnancies or STIs, let alone the ability to deal with these situations if they occur, it is common for teens to feel shame, fear and anxiety about sexuality. And many feel like they cannot turn to adults for help when t...

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Help Kids Understand Consent & Prevent Sexual Assault

Camp Director Kevin Gordon recently read Chessy Prout’s I Have the Right To: A High School Survivor's Story of Sexual Assault, Justice, and Hope, documenting her title story.  It raised for Kevin the issue of the importance of people of ages learning about and respecting the issue of consent. Indeed, at Camp Kupugani, our overnight summer camp about two hours west of Chicago and 90 minutes south of Madison, a top priority is the safety of our campers.  Safety relates to physical and emotional safety, and the autonomy and respect of one’s own body and the bodies of others. A recent Washi...

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10 Ways to Positively Influence Your Teen

At Camp Kupugani, our lovely summer camp in the Midwest (about 2 hours from Chicago and 90 minutes from Madison, Wisconsin), we care about children of all ages, and want each child to be the best version of themselves.  We also know that--if parents and teens are each doing their jobs as parents and teens--it can be challenging for each to connect positively. It is critical for any child, and especially with teens, especially) that they feel heard and respected. A couple of good articles from the good folks at the Greater Good captures well some solutions.  Bullets below, with the the full t...

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11 Ways To Be an Even More Amazing Parent

At Camp Kupugani, our Midwest summer camp nestled in the woods about two hours west of Chicago and ninety minutes south of Madison, we appreciate the parents who value our camp experience enough to send their child to camp summer after summer!  Given that our camp parents are already AMAZING and FANTASTIC, we culled some articles for a few ways that we can step up our parental game to become even more amazing and/or fantastic! Bullets below, with the full articles from the folks at Barking Up the Wrong Tree here and here. Connect! Be aware of the mood/timing. If someone is in th...

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Summer Camp Shines as a Beacon of Social Progress

LEAF RIVER, IL - Acts of hate and racism, whether online or in person, are painfully visible these days," said Phillip Martin, a senior investigative reporter at WGBH, a contributing reporter to PRI's "The World." The US Department of Justice has noted a sharp increase in hate crimes. One summer camp has a proactive approach to celebrating and appreciating diversity. This summer, Camp Kupugani, a multicultural camp for children ages 7 to 15, celebrates its thirteenth summer of creating positive change by empowering campers in an intentionally diverse environment to value and appreciate the differe...

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See Other People’s Kids as 3-Dimensional Humans

At Camp Kupugani, our multicultural overnight summer camp two hours west of Chicago and 90 minutes south of Madison here in the beautiful Midwest, each child is treated as an individual. From arrival, each camper is individually recognized whether a first-timer or a 5-year Kupugani veteran.  We celebrate and appreciate each child, trying to meet them where they are, while simultaneously challenging them to become even better. Each child deserves to start with a clean slate.  Often, one encounters adults saying things along the lines of: “oh, that kid, s/he did this or that”, or “that ...

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The American Experience Varies

We are Camp Kupugani--an overnight summer camp 90 minutes west of Chicago.  We are in the United States of America, a nation which purports to have equal opportunity for all.  Camp Owner/Director Kevin is a brown man. Camp admin Aaron is white (beige-ish really). Their American experience varies. What Aaron can do that Kevin cannot: Without realistic fear of being shot, Aaron can reach into the glove compartment if pulled over by police during a car stop. Aaron can go into any store without the perception or reality of being followed or watched. Aaron can feel safe in an all-white n...

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How We Celebrate & Appreciate Identity at Camp Kupugani

At Camp Kupugani, our Midwest summer camp not far from Madison, Wisconsin (and also convenient to Chicago, Illinois), we strive to help campers celebrate and appreciate themselves and others in all aspects of identity.  We intentionally move beyond “clumping” (hanging out only with those who we perceived to be exactly like us) to interact with a variety of people in our cabins, teams, tables, and camp activities.  Research shows that early exposure to people that are different than you helps you to become more understanding/welcoming as an adult.  We pride ourselves in drawing a diverse...

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3 Ways to Raise a Generous Kid

When children attend Camp Kupugani, our Midwest summer camp 90 minutes south of Madison, we want them to grow at camp and at home, so that they become the best versions of themselves.  Please see below for some bullets from a recent Washington Post article on how to raise a generous kid. You can check out the full article here.   Model It! Children learn by what they see. Pay for coffee for the person behind you.  Be kind to the waitstaff. Say “please” and “thank you.” Be Intentional! Give to charities. Take your child to a food kitchen to help serve ...

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How to Prepare Your Child for Overnight Camp

Even though it's winter, it's not too early to start planning for summer. If you're the parent of a prospective first time camper, consider your goals for your child. Summer is a great time for her (or him) to try new things. Whatever new experience you'd love to introduce, be sure that s/he is involved in choosing a program.    That way s/he keeps a sense of control, which helps to ward off any transition issues if s/he's going off to a sleepaway camp.    As a good parent, you also want to make sure that you push your child a little bit. A huge part of the growth of campers at Camp Ku...

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Camp Kupugani is one of the 50 Most Amazing Summer Camps for Kids

Camp Kupugani has been named one of the 50 Most Amazing Summer Camps for Kids.

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Kupugani touches on all the core values and enrichment that we hope to instill in our [child]. My husband and I absolutely love Camp Kupugani. Our [child] gained immensely from camp.

Lisa G.

Everyone…was just so, so personable, kind, and the kind of person I want
my [child] looking up to and spending time with.

Laura V.

[My daughter’s] face lights up when she speaks about camp, it’s a priceless experience.

Kenya P.

I have never come in contact with such a wonderful group of people at a camp before. Everyone did an outstanding job, the camp was so organized, it was unbelievable.

Joe M.

She absolutely loves the camp, the staff, and all the friends she makes there. I consider Kupugani to be a big influence in helping her grow and expand her mind each summer.

Luci A.


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