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Work at the Humber Arboretum Nature Camps

Do you enjoy working with kids?  Do you love being outdoors and appreciate nature? Apply to be a summer Nature Camp Counsellor!

Every year the Humber Arboretum hires a team of post-secondary students and recent graduates to create an outstanding nature camp experience for youth.

About Nature Camp at the Humber Arboretum 

The Humber Arboretum is a roughly 250 acre public garden and conservation area connected to the Humber College North Campus in Toronto. Throughout July and August, the Arboretum runs Nature Camps that offer a fun, hands-on, nature-connection experience for ages 4-13. The camps are accredited by the Ontario Camps Association. Camp activities are based around weekly themes and supported by the year-round nature education staff from the Humber Arboretum.

Three camps run simultaneously out of the Centre for Urban Ecology:

  • Beaver Camp (ages 4-5)
  • Nature Camp (ages 6-12)
  • Jr. Naturalist Camp (ages 12-13)

There are a variety of summer employment opportunities available every year for enthusiastic post-secondary students and recent graduates who are excited about nature and working with young people.

A counsellor draped in leaves stands in the Wonder Woman pose

Status: 2019 positions have been filled.

Applications for summer 2020 will likely open in December 2019. Check back here for updates.

Please note, a police check will be required for successful candidates.

General Duties: Successful candidates will be responsible for the health and well-being of nature campers aged 4-13. This includes appropriate discipline, communication with parents, daily health checks, and supervising/running various camp games, activities, and programs, along with the duties specific to their position (see details below).

Job Location: Humber Arboretum, Humber College North Campus (205 Humber College Blvd)

Starting Wage: $14.00 / per hour

All Positions Require:

  • A fun attitude
  • Willingness to work outside
  • Prior camp experience helpful but not necessary
  • Ability and interest in working with kids
  • Fun loving personality with a strong commitment to professionalism and providing excellent customer service
  • Ability to work as a member of a team and the ability to accomplish tasks with little or no direct supervision
  • Hold a current certificate in First Aid, and CPR Level C

Positions That Were Available for 2019:

(Please note that position availability may be different for the 2020 camp season. Check for updates in Winter 2019)

A counsellor shows a leaf to young children

Junior Nature Interpreter/Beaver Camp Counsellor

P/T May-June, 35 hrs/week July-August

*Must be enrolled in the Early Childhood Education program at Humber College or U of GH to apply*

Along with day camps, the Humber Arboretum also offers educational field trips for school groups. In this position you will work part-time during May and June to run programs for Kindergarten groups who are visiting the Arboretum or Lakeshore Campus. Then when camp starts, you will switch to a full-time role at Beaver Camp, which is exclusive to 4- and 5-year-olds.

 Successful applicants for this position will have experience working with younger children and a strong interest in incorporating nature into learning.

A counsellor helps too young children with sticks

Summer Camp Counsellor (multiple positions)

35 hrs/week July and August, training starts mid-June

Work with 6 to 12 year-olds at the Humber Arboretum's general Nature Camp. Some weeks you will be assigned with a partner to lead a small group of campers; other weeks you may act as a floater and support different groups and activities. The Counsellor team is at the heart of the camp experience and requires people who are enthusiastic and committed - the kids are counting on you! 

Nature knowledge is not required, but successful applicants will be eager to learn, excited to spend time outdoors, and willing to get a little dirty (okay, sometimes a lot dirty!)

A counsellor shows a baby snapping turtle to a counsellor

1:1 Special Needs Camp Counsellor

35 hrs/wk July and August

*Must have previous experience working with special needs in order to be considered*

Some weeks, the 1:1 Counsellor will act as a regular counsellor with Nature Camp (ages 6-12). Other weeks, the 1:1 Counsellor will be assigned to provide additional support to a camper or campers from any of the three camps who can benefit from extra support. 

A counsellor and campers work together to build a structure

Jr. Naturalist Camp Counsellor (one position)

35 hrs/wk July and August

Jr. Naturalist Camp is our camp exclusively for 12- and 13-year-olds who are deeply interested in learning about the natural world. This camp is facilitated by one of our Sr. Nature Interpreters who work at the Humber Arboretum year-round providing educational programming for school groups.

In this position, you will support the Jr. Naturalist Camp leader for six of the eight weeks out of the summer, and spend the other two weeks working with Nature Camp. The ideal candidate for this position will already have a passion for nature and be just as interested as the campers are in learning more!

Please note that even during the weeks that Jr. Naturalist Camp is running, the camps merge for some activities and you may be asked to provide support at Nature Camp or Beaver Camp  to cover breaks, staff absences, or special activities. 

Counsellors and campers play a parachute game

Before and After Care Counsellor 

P/T 3.5 hours/day for July and August

Interested in working at camp but unable to make a full-time commitment? The Before and After Care Counsellor is an ideal position for a student living in residence or taking classes at Humber College North Campus during the summer. You will work Mon-Fri, 7:30 am to 9:00 am then return for the afternoon shift, 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. You will supervise games and activities for campers aged 4-13 who are arriving before the official start of camp or staying later as they wait for authorized pick up.

You will frequently interact with parents as you sign campers in and out for the day, and must demonstrate professionalism along with having excellent skills with children of all ages.

A counsellor holds a monarch butterfly

Room to Grow

For many counsellors, working at the Humber Arboretum is more than a one-summer commitment. Counsellors have gone on to senior positions at camp or to work at the Arboretum throughout the school year. 


Tips for Applicants

Before an interview or even before submitting your application, take some time to:

Ways to Prepare

 If you are applying for a summer camp position at the Arboretum (or any other summer camp!) you may choose to:

  • Make sure your First Aid certification is up to date; a minimum of CPR Level C is required to work at the Humber Arboretum's Nature Camps
  • Begin the process of getting a police record check, which all successful applicants must provide before training begins in mid-June (or before May for successful Junior Nature Interpreter/Beaver Camp applicants)
  • Consider taking Parks and Recreation Ontario's High Five: Principles of Healthy Child Development one-day training, which is helpful for anyone looking to work with children aged 6-12

More Opportunities

If you don't think summer camp is right for you, students of Humber College and U of GH may also be interested in applying for employment as a work-study Student Gardener during the summer or in volunteering as a Humber Arboretum Ambassador throughout the school year. Learn about all of the opportunities for students at the Humber Arboretum.

A counsellor demonstrates a soil activity