Camp Counsellors - Ten Oaks Project

Camp Counsellors

Camp Ten Oaks

Launched in 2004, Camp Ten Oaks is a one-week, sleep-away camp for children and youth from 2SLGBTQIA+ identities, families, and communities ages 8-17. Camp Ten Oaks was the first summer camp of its kind in Canada, and is a program of the Ten Oaks Project that has grown to two separate weeks of programming in two different camp sites. Rooted in play and grounded in social justice, our fun and affirming camp utilises intentional magic to build community, facilitate accountable environments, and create possibility models of the world we want to live in. 

Camp Ten Oaks works from a camper-centered, anti-oppressive, and anti-racist framework. We strive to offer an environment as diverse as the campers who enjoy our programming. 

Camp Counsellors

Camp Counsellors are the core of Camp Ten Oaks. Working with co-counsellors, they participate with campers in a variety of daily activities as catalysts, leaders, helpers, guides, listeners and, above all, role models. Counsellors live in the cabins with their campers and are responsible for the health and wellbeing of the campers in their cabin group. In consultation with the Camp Director, the Assistant Director of Staff will assign counsellors to work with one of the four cabin groups: JACs (8-9 year-olds), MACs (10-11 year-olds), IACS (12-13 year-olds) or SACs (14-15 year-olds).

Role and responsibilities

  • Support healthy group development within cabin group through facilitation and role modelling of healthy living and relationship-building and cooperative behaviours
  • Live in cabin with campers, maintain awareness of campers’ whereabouts, support wellness of the group as a whole, and facilitate engagement of activities
  • Exercise level of supervision according to the needs of each age group and as outlined in the staff manual
  • Lead or assist in activities that match their skills during the day and in evening programs, campfires, theme days and other special events and program activities.
  • Challenge campers to attempt new experiences, stretch their comfort zones, and utilise coping strategies effectively
  • Facilitate and model consent, conflict resolution, healthy communication, enthusiasm and participation
  • Pre-camp, counsellors must participate in staff training and work in conjunction with the Camp Director and Assistant Directors to develop their core programming plans
  • Maintain the confidentiality of all staff and campers


  • Participate in staff training
  • Learn back-pocket games
  • Connect with co-counsellors to plan core programming for their cabin group 


  • Debrief with Camp Director

Skills & Qualifications

  • Demonstrated understanding of the needs of children and youth from 2SLGBTQIA+ identities, families, and communities
  • Demonstrated understanding of anti-racism and anti-oppressive practice
  • Completion of a police record check for the vulnerable sector

Time Commitment

The time commitment is from May to September. On-site requirements at camp include the staff training weekend  from May 11 – 14, CTO East camp week from July 28 – August 6, and CTO West camp week from August 23 – September 1.


Since 2018, we moved from a volunteer staff team to hiring all roles as paid staff. This change comes from an effort to make it easier for CTO staff to join us for both weeks of camp and training; to take valuable time away from their lives and jobs to support our campers. Pay for positions on the leadership team is $500/week. The in-person staff orientation is considered as one week of work, as are each week of camp. Returning staff who attended CTO in 2022 are offered an additional $50/week.

commitment to equity

In keeping with the Ten Oaks Project’s commitment to equity, applicants are strongly encouraged to self-identify in their applications. Applicants are encouraged to share accessibility needs in the application process, and every attempt will be made to accommodate them.

All returning staff are asked to reapply every year regardless of their previous roles at camp by submitting a letter of intent outlining what role you are interested in taking on, any opportunities for growth you see for camp from within your role, as well as any personal goals you may seek to explore or accomplish while at camp this summer. We do this to ensure our commitment to disrupting historical patterns of power in the camping industry. Any new staff interested in learning about any roles are encouraged to reach out to the Programs Manager for more information at

selection process

Applicants will be selected based on experience, skills, and demonstrated commitments aligned with the goals of Camp Ten Oaks.

how to apply

To apply for this position, please complete the application form found here.

Applications for this position are open until 11:59 PM on Sunday, March 26th, 2023.

Please note that only those selected for an interview will be contacted. Thank you for your interest.