The application deadline has passed for 2017.
We are delighted you are interested in volunteering your time with Camp Smile-A-Mile and helping bring smiles to children with cancer in Alabama. Parents put tremendous trust in us to care for their child while at camp. Therefore we seek to choose the 'best of the best' volunteers for Camp. Also, Camp SAM strives to provide the very best camping experience for the children we serve. Our volunteers are the ones who help make the 'magic' at Camp SAM happen. We believe when you have the very best volunteers, you can provide the best camp experience for children. Thus, a week of summer camp is the best possible way to fully orient and train a new individual to understand the needs of our campers and their families and to understand the mission of Camp Smile-A-Mile. After a volunteer has completed a week long camp session, they can participate in our weekend camps and one day activities. To understand the role of a volunteer at Camp SAM, please continue to read further and learn more our expectations of our volunteers.
Please read the camp volunteer position descriptions, volunteer expectations and frequently asked questions to determine whether or not you are eligible to apply as a volunteer.
Since 1985, our Unit Heads, Cabin, Activity and Misc. Camp Volunteers have provided enthusiasm, fun, creativity, energy and generosity to our campers by nurturing lifelong friendships, provided outlets for personal growth and have created wonderful lasting memories. At Camp SAM, our volunteer counselors learn the meaning of patience and understanding as they experience the role of a mentor. We set extremely high goals, therefore it is important that a volunteer understand our expectations and objectives. If this is the type of influence you wish to have on the lives of young cancer patients, you must make these goals your own and commit to the following:
- Submit a completed application with references between January-March 1st
- Complete a Waiver of Release for a Background Check
- Attend an in-person interview or participate in a phone interview
- If chosen as a volunteer, attend a one-day pre-camp volunteer training in April as well as view online counselor videos, take quizzes and pass them
- Read, understand and abide by the rules, policies and procedures in the Camp Manual
- Arrive on time to camp and attend a full week of summer camp either in June or July; which is held Monday-Saturday
- Desire and ability to work outdoors with children
- Ability to relate to one's peer group
- Ability to be a positive member of a volunteer team
- Ability to accept supervision and guidance
- Enthusiasm, humor, patience, and self-control
- Commitment to attend the entire week of camp
- Provide leadership at the activities and in the cabin
- Work with all camp staff to help meet the needs of the campers
- Show enthusiasm and excitement for camp programs
You don't have to be an expert in any activity to volunteer at Camp SAM, however, we are particularly looking for help in some of these areas:
1. Current Certified Lifeguards, ages 19 or older to staff both weeklong camp sessions. Lifeguards will staff the pool, boating and canoeing areas on Lake Martin where volunteers and campers will need to be supervised. Lifeguarding experience on a lake is recommended. Lifeguards applying will need to submit a copy of their current certification.
2. College students, ages 19 or older, majoring in music, drama or relevant major who can lead and teach impromptu singing or skits during meals, activities, campfires or when waiting around for activities to begin.
3. Experienced Guitar Players, ages 19 or older, who will lead singing during meals, activities, campfire or when waiting around for activities to begin.
4. Experienced Archers, ages 19 or older, who can instruct on how to properly shoot a bow and arrow and related safety skills.
5. Experienced Golfers, ages 19 or older, who can instruct proper techniques in holding and swinging the golf club.
6. Bilingual Volunteers, especially those fluent in Spanish or Sign-Language