LDS Girls' Camp Certification Ideas

Girls' Camp allows young women to build friendships and serve others.

The Young Women organization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints consists of girls ages 12 to 18. The organization encourages its members to attend a Young Women Camp – also called Girls' Camp – each year. Under the supervision of church leaders, LDS young women engage in fun activities as well as spiritual lessons. They also complete an annual camp certification program, ensuring they continue to build on their knowledge as they grow.

1 First-year Certification

Young women attending camp for the first time must demonstrate how to give first aid. Make it fun by turning the demonstration into a relay game. Assign each girl a wound or problem to pretend to have. Pair off the girls and space the partners about 30 feet from one another. On the signal, each girl must run to her partner, find out what's wrong and treat the problem. She then must run back to her original station so her partner can treat her. The first team to finish wins the game, but every girl can earn her certification.

For the cooking certification, distribute a handout that lists 10 to 12 simple campfire recipes. Give the girls the handout on the first day of camp and ask them to choose two recipes they want to try. Provide the ingredients and allow them to cook and sample the recipes throughout the week.

2 Second-year Certification

Second-year participants must spend time reading about Joseph Smith's prayer in the Sacred Grove. Ask them to record their thoughts and share them later around a campfire.

Help the girls prepare a skit about the pioneer women. Bring small accessories like hair ribbons, gloves or hats and allow the girls to choose their costumes. Give them a theme for the skit, like faith or enduring to the end, and have them perform it later that night.

3 Third-year Certification

Hide litter around the camp area, noting where where each specific piece is. Attach a clue to each piece of litter that leads to the next one. Teach the third-year girls about preserving and protecting the environment, then send them on a scavenger hunt. Place a treat or reward next to the last item.

Arrange six to 10 stations, each one including all the materials necessary to build an emergency shelter. Split the girls into teams of two. One girl will record the time it takes for her partner to build three shelters. Each girl must disassemble the shelter upon completion, so the next participant can begin. Once every girl in the first group is done, the times should be recorded and the girls should trade positions. The girls with the fastest times in each groups win a small prize.

4 Fourth-year Certification

Help the girls prepare an icebreaker game on the first day or night of camp. They can create the rules and incorporate music, dance or silly rhymes to help everyone get to know one another and remember names.

Teach the girls about broken bones on the first day of camp and inform them that there might be some "spontaneous" injuries throughout the week. Camp leaders can suddenly "hurt" their arms or legs when around a fourth-year girl who needs her certification.

Based in Nashville, Tenn., Kristin Fitzgerald has been a freelance writer since 2011. She focuses on cooking, DIY projects, history, education and politics. Fitzgerald earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in history and German from the University of Southern Mississippi.