For teens entering 10th or 11th grade
Be the change you wish to see in the world: Come pioneer a vibrant earth-based culture at Eden Village!
Our Apprentices — as we call our 10th and 11th graders — take a place of honor and responsibility (and fun!) within the larger camp community. Apprentices live simply with the earth as they gain skills in organic farming, wilderness survival, culinary arts, herbalism, community leadership and more.
Apprentices are very much part of camp, and take advantage of all that the Eden Village programs, facility and staff have to offer — while also going on special teen trips, building their own Teen Village, offering and receiving mentorship, and diving more deeply into a naturalist lifestyle of organic farming, cooking, and practicing wilderness skills.
We encourage coming for the full seven weeks, but many teens are coming for three weeks. Just talk to us.
Eden Village’s teen leaders need challenge, support, and inspiration. Our teens journey through a rite-of-passage of adventure, responsibility, self-exploration and service – and emerge with increased confidence, skills, and awareness of themselves, their communities and the earth.
The summer helps in the transition to a healthy, balanced young adulthood: through outdoor experiences that bring us to our growing edges, we find tools for healthy relationships, living from a place of purpose, and speaking from our personal truth.
Our Apprentices live in cabins (separate for male and female) with showers, bathrooms and electricity, and also spend time creating and living in their own campsite in the woods. When in the main camp, the day begins with participant-led morning services, breakfast, and a few hours of working and learning on the farm. In the afternoon, the activities balance structure and choice.
Here is some of what sets the Teen Apprenticeship apart from the rest of camp:
- Multi-day Trips. Teens have a number of out-of-camp adventures including a 4-day Backpacking Expedition along the Eastern Interstate of Pedestrian Mobility, a.k.a. the famous Appalachian Trail. Guided by seasoned wilderness experts, this trip offers meaningful context for exploring and building community, spending focused time with the natural world, and trying out new skills in shelter- and fire-building, animal tracking and more. An optional, supervised Solo day within this adventure provides a unique challenge.
- Permaculture Design and Teen Village. Teens learn Permaculture design principles (sustainable design inspired by nature), then promptly apply them in designing and building Teen Village, their homestead in the woods (in addition to their home in camp). Building Teen Village may include clearing paths and camp space, erecting teepees, setting up an outdoor kitchen, and building other outdoor spaces of their choice. The resulting structures will influence camp for years to come.
- Inter-generational Mentoring. Our teens are deeply involved in mentoring, on both sides of this special nurturing relationship: receiving stories, wisdom and attention from older teachers, as well as serving as role models for our campers.
- Tools for Community Living. At the weekly Village Meeting, teens come together to discuss any community issue within the safety of the consensus process. Apprentices can learn to facilitate this meeting. Through this and other aspects of close group living, teens build skills for thriving in community: collaboration, compassionate communication, problem-solving and effective conflict resolution.