What is Camp No Fear all about?

No seriously, what is Camp No Fear?
CNF is a camp (that we’ve been running for over 20 years!) for teenagers with live music, a great message, games, activities, space to chill, cabin time, swimming, and a whole lot more. Teams compete for points to be crowned the ultimate; campers make friends and get connected with great role models. Check out this video for a snapshot of what it's like for campers, or head to this video for a parents perspective.

Why do you run Camp No Fear?
We run CNF because we want to encourage and support young people. Being a teenager can be difficult which is why our youth ministry supports young people throughout the year. CNF kicks off the year: it gives us an opportunity to meet new campers and build relationships with the campers we already know. We believe that there is something powerful about taking a block of time away from your normal life, location and schedule to be in a positive environment – and the campers who come agree!

Who’s allowed to go?
If you’ll be in year 7 to 12 next year, we would love to see you at CNF. As an added bonus, if you finish year 12 this year, you can come to one last CNF this January (we’ll call you year 13’s for the week)!

Where is Camp No Fear?
CNF is at Phillip Island Adventure Resort! PIAR is an incredible campsite that features an awesome auditorium for the band to play in, swimming pools, adventure activities, comfy cabins and ample space for the wildest activities you’ve ever experienced at a camp!

Can individuals or groups from other churches attend?
We would love to have you! In terms of churches and/or denominations our only mission on CNF is to fuel you up for the year and encourage you so that you can return to your local church and be effective, whether its Gateway or elsewhere! Every year we have campers attend from other churches and we make sure they know that even though we have loved having them on CNF, we want them to take their excitement and what they have learnt back to their friends at their home church.

How can a group from another church attend?
If you want to bring a group from your church, please contact our CNF administrator who will talk you through the process, including who will take registrations, how many campers you expect to be bring, and all the other details to do with your group attending.

Do campers have to be Christian or go to church?
No way! Young people from all sorts of backgrounds come to CNF, from those who attend church regularly to young people who have never been to church in their lives! However, CNF is a Christian event and does feature sessions that focus on Jesus. If you’re worried about that, we can reassure you that all we want to do is make CNF a positive experience for every young person who comes on CNF and our leaders will work their hardest to make CNF extraordinary for every camper.

Registering for Camp No Fear

How does registration and payment work?
Couldn’t be easier! Simply head to register.campnofear.com and follow the prompts! When signing up, you can select to either pay up front, or begin a payment plan to pay it off throughout the year.

What if I want to invite someone who has never been to church, let alone Camp, ever before?
We think CNF is great for literally any young person - and it exists as a connection point for people who know nothing about church! Our strategies and how we help new people connect with CNF change from year to year, but drop us a line at cnf@gateway.asn.au and we'll help you out!

What if myself, or someone I know, can’t afford to pay for Camp No Fear?
This is the headline: we don't allow money to be a reason why any young person misses out on Camp No Fear. It's simply that important to us that anyone can attend.
There are amazing people who donate sponsorship money for people who genuinely cannot afford to come to CNF. Our policy is not to offer full sponsorships; instead we discuss the situation with the person in need and negotiate an appropriate level of sponsorship. This allows the person in need to have some ownership of the registration and for us to help more people. This includes family discounts - if you are planning on sending multiple campers, we may be able to offer a discount on a case-by-case basis. If you are in one of these positions or know someone in one of these positions, simply contact us at cnf@gateway.asn.au. Please be assured that we do not pass on this information to anyone who does not need to know. Sponsorships are not finalised until later in the year, but we will let you know about the progress of your request as information comes to hand.

What about campers who are nervous about not knowing anyone?
Trust us, you will have new friends by the end of CNF! On the first morning there will be lots of leaders looking out for campers who need a friend and as basically as soon as we get started you are put into your cabin group so you will have people to spend time with – you won’t be left on your own!

Can campers come for part of Camp No Fear?
As a general rule, we don’t allow campers who cannot stay for the duration of CNF. We believe that a large part of CNF’s effectiveness comes from stepping away from your day-to-day life for the duration of CNF. From experience, we think that missing out on a portion of CNF waters down the experience not only for that camper, but also for their whole cabin group. However, if you think that you are a valid exception to the rule please contact us and we will discuss the situation.

How do campers get to Camp No Fear?
For your convenience, drop off and pick up is at Gateway Worship and Performing Arts Centre, 14 Heversham Drive, Seaford. From there, the campers take buses to and from the campsite.

What about campers with special needs?
Unfortunately, due to the size and high action nature of CNF, we have limited ability to adequately care for campers with complicated special needs. Please contact us if you have any questions or have a potential camper with special needs and we’ll be more than happy to discuss the situation and assess whether CNF would be a good fit for the camper.

Preparing for Camp No Fear

What to bring to Camp No Fear?
Bedding:
-Sleeping Bag or Doona & Fitted Sheet
-Pillow
Toiletries:
-Sunscreen & Aeroguard
-2 towels (cabin and beach)
-Toothbrush & toothpaste
-Soap and shampoo
-Deodorant
Clothing:
-3 set of clothes for activities (these will probably get dirty)
-1 set of clothes that may get wrecked!
-Extra comfy clothes
-At least 1 warm jacket/jumper for night activities
-Bathers
-At least 1 pair of covered shoes
-Thongs and a hat
Other:
-Notepad and pen
-Bible
-Plastic bag for dirty clothes
-Optional: Snack for in your cabin (no nuts!)
-Optional: Camera

What not to bring to Camp No Fear?
-Cigarettes, Alcohol, Drugs, Pornographic material -Any food with nuts in it

What is the policy on electronic devices at Camp No Fear?
We don’t have a flat out ban on electronic devices at CNF, but we do have a few guidelines and warnings. Honestly, we don’t think you need electronic devices at CNF – if you’re worried about photos, we have professional photographers capturing the action. Not only do we not think you need them, we think they make your CNF experience worse. We believe that a large part of the effectiveness of CNF is stepping away from your day-to-day life and you can’t do that if you’re still checking Twitter and Instagram! Lastly, if contact with home is a concern, rest assured that there are phones and contact numbers available (see below) – contact won’t be an issue. If you want the best possible CNF experience, leave your electronics at home.

If after all of that you still absolutely have to bring something, there are a few things you need to know: most importantly, we can’t take responsibility for stolen, lost or damaged items at CNF. Additionally, your electronics need to live in your cabin: they are not allowed at activities or in the auditorium and finally, if a leader asks you to put your electronics away, you need to comply – it’ll be for a good reason.

Do people really go all out for the dress up night?
Absolutely! Each year we have some crazy outfits – one year, a group went as an entire Happy Meal. Some people are a little tamer than that, but you can win points for your team when you go all out.

How are the cabin groups worked out?
In late November you will receive an email that confirms everything you need to know to make it to Camp. In this email will be a link to an online form where you can choose who you want in your cabin. We make every effort to make sure you have at least 1 person you've chosen in your cabin with you. If you choose not to fill this out we will place you where we think is best.

What about campers who only know campers in other year levels?
Make sure this is clearly marked on your cabin requests email and we will try to accommodate you.

What to expect at Camp No Fear

What happens when campers get dropped off?
First of all, head toward the flags and sign in. The lovely sign in team will greet you with a smile and point you towards a leader who will make sure you feel welcome and not lost!

What happens at pick up time?
When the buses arrive back, everyone will grab a bag (it doesn’t have to be yours) and bring it to the car park at the pick up location. You’ll then chill outside while the adults get seated in the auditorium. Once we’re ready to go, we’ll bring you all into the auditorium for a few final songs, presentation of awards (ultimate team and ultimate campers) and to be among the first to see the final highlights package. Once you’ve finished showing the adults how its done, you’ll be able to find the person who is picking you up, grab your bags and say your final goodbyes!

What does a day at Camp No Fear look like?
First up is unsurprisingly breakfast! Every meal at CNF is an event in itself with MC’s who bring fun, games and lame jokes to keep you entertained and help wake you up! Then you’ll head into the auditorium (trust us, you’ve never seen a stage setup like this at any CNF you’ve been to) for the morning session including funny videos, massive games, the band and anything else we dream up that we think will get you in a good mood for the day.

Next up are activities! We smash it out in the morning with 3 blocks before lunch and a short break for morning tea (You’ve got to keep your energy up!). The activities at CNF are the biggest and best that we can come up with! Although you’ve already eaten twice, it’s time for lunch with different MC’s to bring you similarly lame jokes. Tired yet? Too bad!

After lunch is another never-before-heard-of activity. Still hungry at this point? Have some afternoon tea and then, finally, a big block of free time to relax, hit the pool and chill with your newfound friends until more MC fun at dinner (we like food!).

After that, you’re into the final stretch with a massive night activity (these go to a whole new level) and the night session in the auditorium – this typically features an epic opener, a dance, the band, our incredible speaker and much more! One more meal (supper) and then its off to cabins to relax and chat about the day before getting some rest for tomorrow. Phew!

Who’s looking after the campers on Camp No Fear?
We have a team of incredible committed leaders that broadly fall into a couple of categories. First of all is the senior camp team who oversees CNF and have a combined experience of over 50 years in leading camps. Then we have the leaders who serve in our youth ministry all year. They have monthly training, strict guidelines for behavior and are all-round amazing. Many of them have multiple camps under their belts too. Finally, we have a crew of awesome leaders who join us just for CNF. The main thing you need to know is that they all want to make sure that every camper has an amazing experience on CNF. Every adult who is on site at CNF holds a current Working With Children’s Check. Further down, you can find more information about training, guidelines and accreditation required of all our leaders specifically for CNF.

Do you cater for special dietary requirements?
In general, we are able to cater for basic dietary requirements, such as vegetarians, dairy-free, gluten-free etc. without a problem as long as we are notified by December. For more complex needs, we may require the camper to supply some of their own food for the week. The key is good communication early in the process. If you have any concerns with regards to food allergies etc. please talk to us and we’ll work out the best approach for an enjoyable stay for your camper. The campsite operates year-round for school and weekend groups, so the catering staff is quite conscious of the different dietary requirements that come through CNF.

Are visitors allowed?
Visitors are not allowed on CNF. This is for a number of reasons including safety of campers, catering, and maintaining the atmosphere of CNF. Some individuals may be invited to visit for specific reasons, but this is by invitation only and organised well before CNF begins.

The Serious Stuff

How are the leaders chosen? What accreditation, training and guidelines are there for leaders?
First of all, every adult on site at CNF will hold a current Working With Children’s Check as required by law. All adults on site at CNF have been approved as suitable for their role by the senior camp team. There are a number of roles on CNF ranging from completely behind the scenes to being in a cabin with campers. Leaders are assigned to these roles based on their experience as a leader and their suitability for the role. Leaders who are on CNF for the first time are paired with experienced leaders. Additionally we have a strict guidelines document for leaders that every leader is expected to adhere to. If a leader were unable to adhere to the guidelines, they would be removed from the CNF team. Finally, all leaders attend two CNF specific training events where we cover the guidelines, expectations and provide further training and skills so that they can be effective at CNF.

What if I change my mind about attending? Can I get my money back?
Firstly, if there is anything we can do to change your mind, or anything you are unsure of, please contact us - we'd love to help get you to Camp! If not, then we take this on a case-by-case basis, but in the case of a simple change-of-mind we typically retain a $50 administrative fee from refunds. We may not be able to provide any refund if you cancel your registration in January.

Can I contact my kids during Camp No Fear?
You will be provided with a contact number in the event that you need to contact someone on CNF urgently. If you feel that you may need to be in regular contact with a camper or that a camper may need to contact you at some point during CNF, please make us aware of it so that we can do our best to make that communication easy.

What happens if there is an emergency?
In the event of a camp-wide emergency, we will follow the processes and direction of the campsite we are at. They have clearly defined evacuation procedures and designated wardens etc. In the event of this type of emergency we would do our best to contact you in the following ways (and in this order): via the CNF Facebook page, via the CNF website, via text message and via phone.

In the event of an emergency involving an individual, we would arrange appropriate care for the individual (as per the indemnity form) and then contact that individual’s emergency contact (as per the medical form) by phone.

Who runs Camp No Fear?
CNF is run by Gateway Youth, the youth ministry of Gateway Church(gateway.asn.au). Our Youth Paston is Singe Gill. You can contact us at youth@gateway.asn.au.

How does discipline work at Camp No Fear?
We need to have clear guidelines for camper behaviour, as we know that clear boundaries are essential for CNF to run smoothly. However, our intent is for every camper to stay at CNF for the duration of CNF. We will make every effort to take into account any contributing factor to misbehaviour and give the camper as many opportunities as we feel is fair for them to improve behaviour before escalating discipline. Above all, we believe in the value of every camper who is trusted to our care and hold the wellbeing of the individual in balance with the wellbeing of others who their behaviour is affecting when making decisions about discipline.

All guidelines are presented to the campers upon arrival at the site. The first level of discipline at CNF is 10 push-ups or sit-ups. This is used in the event of swearing or a put-down. The next level of discipline is completing a chore (picking up rubbish, vacuuming the dining room etc.) or sitting out part of an activity. Further to this is sitting out an entire activity under the supervision of a leader (only at the discretion of the senior camp team).

If behaviour does not improve at this point, a member of the senior camp team will give a verbal warning that the camper may be sent home and the camper will have an opportunity to improve their behaviour. If the senior camp team feels that camper’s behaviour has not improved following the verbal warning we may elect to send the camper home. Their parent/guardian is required to collect the camper from the campsite in this case. There is no refund of any payments. Additionally, any behaviour that intentionally puts another person at risk or in danger may result in a camper being sent home immediately.