The Salvation Army junior camp made their annual trip to Minsteracres in August. That is 61 7 – 12 year olds overrunning the main house, retreat house and youth centre for a week. They were supported by their own army of volunteer staff drawn from Salvation Army children’s ministries around the region, using their own holiday to look after the youngsters.
The camps are very popular. “The list for this one filled in just ten days,” says Stephen Burn in charge of the northern division’s junior camps. “We had 25 on the waiting list.”
It was Stephen’s second year in charge, which made for an easier visit now he knows the space and what it can offer. “It’s great here and because of the atmosphere of the house even on the first night it feels like home.”
Susan Pereira, divisional family office supervisor who visited at the end of the week to see how they got on agreed, “The grounds are fantastic – everything is contained. They can run free, but you’re not going to lose them,” she said, “They think they’re not supervised, but they are!”
The week is filled with activities, some on-site like den building, barbecue, water fights, messy games, team time and bible verse. Others off site, like the ever popular Beamish wild.
The only regret is that, despite the sizeable capacity at Minsteracres, some still could not come. “It’s such a great place and we could always bring more,” says Rob Camp, one of the team who has been coming for many years.