L&E World Camps and Teen Travel

Spring ’19 Newsletter

May 2, 2019

It ‘s been a busy couple of months with the L&E Office a hive of activity.  Here are a few of the highlights…

Visit to Amsterdam

In April we were invited by a lovely parent to give a presentation at her children’s school De School van HIP in Laren near Amsterdam.  We had an absolute ball and also took the opportunity to make some plans for our Teen Travel Euro Tour in the summer which will be stopping off in Amsterdam.  Thank you, Yvonne for hosting us and to all those who took the time to hear us speak.

Julie & Sam in Amsterdam

Julie & Sam in Amsterdam

New L&E Films

We’ve had a lot of fun over the past few months interviewing campers, teen travellers, parents and staff to help others understand what L&E World Camps & Teen Travel are all about.  They are the best part of 10 minutes long so get a cup of tea and a couple of biscuits and enjoy…

L&E World Camps – what children, parents and staff say!

What is L&E Teen Travel? (in their own words)

Congratulations to Julie & Hayley

Julie & Hayley

Julie & Hayley

Julie and Hayley are very special members of the L&E team and have been involved with us since 2014. They got married on 20th April in an incredibly emotional ceremony with many members of the L&E staff in attendance. It was a magical day and we are all so delighted for them both. Wishing them many years of happiness together.

L&E Team Wedding Guests

L&E Team Wedding Guests

In honour of their special day L&E produced a music video to celebrate the small (though not insignificant!) part that L&E plays their lives…

Hayley & Julie’s Summer Story

Limited Availability Summer 2019

Summer is fast approaching and all our programmes are filling up nicely.  We have no places left on our Teen Travel UK Tours and have only a few places on our Block 1 World Camp North.  All other programmes still have places but will no doubt fill up very soon so don’t delay if you are still interested.

World Camps

  • North UK: 7th – 20th July (A few place available):
  • North UK: 21st July – 3rd August (Limited Availability)
  • South UK: 28th July – 10th August (Limited Availability)

Teen Travel

  • UK Tour: 30th June – 13th July (No Availability)
  • Euro Tour: 21st July – 3rd August (Limited Availability)

Young Global Leaders Course

  • North UK: 13th – 20th July (Limited Availability)
  • South UK: 3rd -10th August (Limited Availability)

New Teen Travel Tour for 2020

We’re delighted to announce our new Teen Travel programme in British Columbia, Canada. For more details email: info@learnexperience.co.uk

British Columbia Adventure

Sierra’s L&E Journey

February 2, 2019

“quickly realised how inclusive the camp was”

Sierra’s Story

Over the past 10 years we have had hundreds of children come to spend their summers with us and with each child comes a story, this is Sierra’s story.  Sierra is from Kentucky in the USA and first came to L&E at the age of 14 in 2014.  Her grandmother Denise made the trip up north to drop Sierra off at camp as she lives in London and Sierra spends her summers there.  After being bullied and picked on at school Denise wanted her granddaughter to grow up knowing that she didn’t need to “conform” and feel the need to try and “fit in”.  Sierra describes how nervous she was about coming to camp as she thought she would be an outsider being the only American.  She very quickly realised how inclusive the camp was and how her nationality or background didn’t matter.  Sierra later described the best part of L&E was the way in which she was able to interact with everyone regardless of age, gender or background.

“learn the art of travel in a safe and supportive environment”

The following year, as well as coming back to camp for 2 weeks Sierra, along with 5 other teenagers from across Europe booked onto the Teen Travel UK trip.  Teen Travel is a unique programme for 15 & 16 year olds which allows teenagers to learn the art of travel in a safe and supportive environment.  Sierra describes Teen Travel as “helping her with real life problems” and although she learns a lot from her parents about how to budget and organise transportation it isn’t the same as “experiencing it for yourself”.  Living and travelling with others is all about compromise and Sierra found this to be a big part of the trip.  Knowing that what one person wanted wasn’t the only thing that mattered and it was the whole group that needed to agree – “teamwork makes the dreamwork!”  Furthermore, being accountable and learning valuable practical skills translated into Sierra having the ability to navigate the international journey to camp each year.

“the L&E experience has been a game changer for Sierra”

Speaking about the overall effects L&E had on Sierra, she expressed that the experiences she gained from the multiple programmes she attended prepared her for college largely due to being exposed to people from different cultural and religious backgrounds.  Without these experiences she felt that her transition to college would have been “difficult”.

We asked Denise to try and sum up how she felt L&E had effected her granddaughter…“the L&E experience has been a game changer for Sierra.  She owns and rocks her self-confidence with ease and grace.  That confidence is no longer predicated on the “if they like me”; it is now firmly rooted in the “I will be fine if they don’t”.  Her view of the world and its infinite possibility is tremendously expansive.  She clearly understands that living life is about the journey, as the destination is just a marker at a point in time and ever changing.”

“an absolute pleasure playing a part in Sierra’s journey”

Sierra is currently undertaking an undergraduate course at the University of Kentucky in Animal Science and Technology and her goal is to become a veterinarian, and if you ask her grandmother she will describe this as her “destiny”.

It has been an absolute pleasure playing a part in Sierra’s journey and we wish her all the very best for the future and hope to see her back at L&E one day…perhaps wearing an orange polo shirt!

Full Testimonial from Sierra’s Grandmother

Sierra’s summer experiences with L&E made a tremendous impact on her self-esteem and sense of being.  Meeting, mixing, and bonding with young people from all over the world helped her to establish a real sense of belonging and an understanding of the privilege and responsibility that comes with being a citizen of the world.

L&E creates a microcosm that consistently exemplifies what real community is.  In this space, the young people are able flourish without judgement or ridicule or constraining social norms.  Kind consideration for one another is the underlying vibe or mantra.

With this as a foundation for her summer experiences, Sierra has been able to fully explore what being the best version of self looks like, feels like, and sounds like.  Her experiences with the extra activity (horse riding) helped her “find” her true passion.  The encouragement from the instructors and the opportunities she had to bond with the horses simply sealed her destiny.  Sierra will work with animals – full stop.

Before going to L&E she was being bullied and picked on at school.  The decision to send her to L&E was purely predicated on the fact that we did not want her to grow up feeling like she needed to conform or “be like” just so she could “fit it”.

When we arrived day-1 of her first year; I was helping her unpack and group of girls popped around the corner asking her name and where she was from.  Sierra froze and said nothing, so I did all the introductions.  I remember thinking “come on Sie get out there” and then I just left the room.  Within 5 minutes, she and the entire group came bouncing down the stairs and she was on her way.

As it turns out, her experiences with L&E have been gateway experiences.  Every summer when she returned from camp, she was more confident and secure and capable with a very grounded sense ofwho she is and what she wants from life.

As a part of teem travel, her self-awareness expanded even more.  Teen travel is a truly unique experience because it deems them fully accountable for what happens next.  It becomes a good experience only if they work to make if a good experience – as a team they plan, organise, budget, etc.  The fact that they are responsible for every single aspect of the allows them to make very adult decisions being fully accountable for the outcome.  The practical skills learned as a part of Teen Travel meant that we were more confident in her ability to navigate the international journey to camp every year.

The L&E experience has been a game changer for Sierra.  She owns and rocks her self-confidence with ease and grace.  That confidence is no longer predicated on the “if they like me”; it is now firmly rooted in the “I will be fine if they don’t”.  Her view of the world and its infinite possibility is tremendously expansive.  She clearly understands that living life is about the journey, as the destination is just a marker at a point in time and ever changing.

I can never in 1,000 years thank the L&E team enough.

Denise BB, October 2018

Full Interview with Sierra

1: How did you feel about coming to camp before you arrived?

When I first found out I was going to L&E I was excited because I knew it was going to be a great experience but when I arrived there I became very nervous and overwhelmed by the amount of people that were there. Since I was from America and many of the people there were from Europe, I thought that I would be an outcast.

2: How did you feel about camp after?

After my 2 weeks of being at camp was over I was very sad. I had so much fun meeting people, participating in activities and games and going horseback riding. When my time at camp was over that’s when I realized how close I had become with the campers and tutors, it felt like I was leaving my second family. 

3: What’s the best thing about camp?

The best part of L&E would have to be how involved the camp is. Most camps I have been to, you would find a small group of people you connected with and stay with them the entire time. With this camp all the activities and games were made to have everyone involved. Here I was able to interact with all people of different age groups and ethnicities and still have fun.

4: What did you learn on Teen Travel?

Teen Travel taught me how to live with others and how to compromise. I’m used to living with family members but had never stayed with people I had just met. I noticed how many times everyone had disagreements over what we wanted to do and what we felt we should spend our money on. Being in these situations made me realize that what I wanted wasn’t the only thing that mattered and that it is important to learn how to work well with others. Teamwork makes the dream work.

5: What would you say to someone who was thinking about doing TT but was undecided?

I would tell them that they should give it a try because it will help them with real life problems. Where I’m from my school never taught me how to budget and find my own transportation and accommodations. The little bit that I did know about these things came from what my parents told me but it’s not the same as experiencing it for yourself. Along with learning all these things you also get the chance to adventure out, meet new people, travel to new places and have fun while doing it. 

6: Any other thoughts about L&E?

I believe L&E is a great place for everyone. I was a very introverted person and L&E helped me step out of my comfort zone and get used to meeting and being around a lot of different people. 

7: What effect did L&E have on you?

In my opinion I believe that L&E has prepared me for college. If it wasn’t for the camp and teen travel I would not have been exposed to being around and living with multiple people from different cultural backgrounds and religions. Without L&E I feel like my transition into college would have been very difficult.

Little/Cool Sam’s L&E Working Journey

December 13, 2018

Engaged children

Children engaged with Sam’s English Lessons

I have to tell you a quick story…Sam B has worked with us for the last 9 years and has been a key component of why our camps are so successful.  He is loved by everyone – staff/parents and most importantly, the kids.  He has always been known as “Little Sam” to differentiate from myself (who is ever so slightly taller!!)  However, in my eyes he will always be “Cool Sam”.  The main being reason back in 2012 we had a magical theme night where, inevitably I found myself hidden under a sheet in the front hall while the children searched high and low for me.  A few children rushed up near me (not knowing I was under the sheet) declaring that they’d received a clue from Sam.  One child exclaimed “Do you mean Boss Sam or Cool Sam!!??”……  My ego was crushed for a few moments but, to be fair I definitely can’t compete on the coolness factor with our beloved Little Sam.  Here’s his story in his own words…. SR

Waterfight

Sam embracing an L&E Waterfight

I was very happy to have the chance to write about my experiences working with L&E over the years. I’ve been working with L&E since it began almost 10 years ago now! So I’ve had many great summers at camp and seen the impact the camp has on kids as they return year after year. I came to my first camp when I was only 19 years old and at that stage the camp was still working out what it would become in the years to come. We had some really great kids that first year, although we almost had as many staff as kids that year, which did make the staff vs camp dodgeball quite easy! As has always been the case year on year, the kids that are attracted to this camp are always great fun. An amazing aspect of camp is that each week is a completely new experience. While you may have the same size camp, in the same place, with the same staff, the camp will still feel unique, as what makes a camp is the kids and each week is made up of a new, totally unique set of characters, whose mix of personalities make the camp what it is.

Harry Potter night

Sam in 2012 Harry Potter Extravaganza

I came to work at  L&E   through my family, both my two sisters and my father worked that first year and many of our friends have worked at the camp over those 10 years. The camp has always had a very intimate, family feel to it and that is something that I think was fostered in those early camps. At that stage there was roughly a 2:1 child to staff ratio and it really did feel like one big family. That ideal has largely remained at  L&E through the years and is what makes this camp so special. Despite that,  L&E  has grown every year I have been there and has added new locations and experiences to the original North Camp, such as the new South Camp and teen travel.  It would be so difficult to pick a favorite memory from my years at  L&E, however I think perhaps the most rewarding part of my time at  L&E has been to see so many children grow up over the years. I’ve seen many kids come for their first camp as little 8 year olds, very shy and unsure of how their week is going to work out, and then return for the next 6 years, making life long friends and growing up into really great people. There would be too many kids to name, but a particular highlight has been to see the likes of Tom and Baptiste, who were once kids on the camp, return as staff and be such great tutors. Apart from making me feel old 😉 that just highlights that the camp has an impact for kids beyond the week they spend with us over the summer. It has been an eventful first 10 years for  L&E  and I hope that the next 10 years will be the same 😀 SB

Wizards, Giants, Dwarves

Sam leading L&E favourite Wizards, Giants, Dwarves

L&E Newsletter – Dec ’18

December 5, 2018

November was a busy month that brought, amongst other things the introduction of our new booking system which will hopefully allow L&E to move (belatedly) into the 21st century.  Families will have their own accounts where they can see their payment plans, make personal requests and update data to allow for an easy progression to camp.  Please be in touch with the L&E Office if you have any queries about the new system.

The L&E Roadshow got going with Julie visiting Copenhagen (see below for full story). I will be visiting New York in December and will look forward to tell you all about it in the January Newsletter. I wish you all a great festive season and really hope to see many of you in the New Year! SR

L&E Review

We are a small company that don’t have a massive marketing budget to spread the word of L&E. Therefore, we really rely on our loyal families to help us get the message out to other families.  Word of mouth has always been our main source of new families and we truly appreciate all your testimonials and recommendations.  It would be wonderful to have a permanent record on an independent forum where you can leave your honest and open reviews.  We have review pages on Google and Facebook so would be absolutely delighted if you could spare a few moments.  Many thanks in advance.

L&E in Copenhagen

Our first road trip of the season took us to the beautiful Danish capital, Copenhagen.  It was their first cold snap of the year but clear skies made it a thoroughly enjoyable trip.  

We were delighted to host 2 L&E information evenings at schools in Rungsted which is just north of Copenhagen.  The first school we visited was Rungsted Skole which is the school L&E camper Freja attends.  Along with Freja and her mother we met some new families and spent an evening telling them all about the 2019 L&E programmes.  The next evening we visited was Rungsted Private Realskole where we again met some lovely new families.  There were lots of great questions from the parents and children from ‘what is the food like’ to ‘how do we pick our activities’.  The families said how great it was to have someone explain how all L&E programmes work in person and how this really put their minds at ease about sending their children to a camp in another country.  

We have found these information evenings to be very helpful for families trying to decide upon summer programmes for their children.  They give parents and children the opportunity to hear a presentation from a L&E representative and ask any questions they might have, that includes the children asking questions!  If you would like L&E to come and visit your school, town or city then please get in touch with Julie. 

Little/Cool Sam’s L&E Working Journey

I have to tell you a quick story…Sam B has worked with us for the last 9 years and has been a key component of why our camps are so successful.  He is loved by everyone – staff/parents and most importantly, the kids.  He has always been known as “Little Sam” to differentiate from myself (who is ever so slightly taller!!)  However, in my eyes he will always be “Cool Sam”.  The main being reason back in 2012 we had a magical theme night where, inevitably I found myself hidden under a sheet in the front hall while the children searched high and low for me.  A few children rushed up near me (not knowing I was under the sheet) declaring that they’d received a clue from Sam.  One child exclaimed “Do you mean Boss Sam or Cool Sam!!??”……  My ego was crushed for a few moments but, to be fair I definitely can’t compete on the coolness factor with our beloved Little Sam.  Here’s his story in his own words….

I was very happy to have the chance to write about my experiences working with L&E over the years. I’ve been working with L&E since it began almost 10 years ago now! So I’ve had many great summers at camp and seen the impact the camp has on kids as they return year after year. I came to my first camp when I was only 19 years old and at that stage the camp was still working out what it would become in the years to come. We had some really great kids that first year, although we almost had as many staff as kids that year, which did make the staff vs camp dodgeball quite easy! As has always been the case year on year, the kids that are attracted to this camp are always great fun. An amazing aspect of camp is that each week is a completely new experience. While you may have the same size camp, in the same place, with the same staff, the camp will still feel unique, as what makes a camp is the kids and each week is made up of a new, totally unique set of characters, whose mix of personalities make the camp what it is.

I came to work at  L&E   through my family, both my two sisters and my father worked that first year and many of our friends have worked at the camp over those 10 years. The camp has always had a very intimate, family feel to it and that is something that I think was fostered in those early camps. At that stage there was roughly a 2:1 child to staff ratio and it really did feel like one big family. That ideal has largely remained at  L&E through the years and is what makes this camp so special. Despite that,  L&E  has grown every year I have been there and has added new locations and experiences to the original North Camp, such as the new South Camp and teen travel.  It would be so difficult to pick a favorite memory from my years at  L&E, however I think perhaps the most rewarding part of my time at  L&E has been to see so many children grow up over the years. I’ve seen many kids come for their first camp as little 8 year olds, very shy and unsure of how their week is going to work out, and then return for the next 6 years, making life long friends and growing up into really great people. There would be too many kids to name, but a particular highlight has been to see the likes of Tom and Baptiste, who were once kids on the camp, return as staff and be such great tutors. Apart from making me feel old 😉 that just highlights that the camp has an impact for kids beyond the week they spend with us over the summer. It has been an eventful first 10 years for  L&E  and I hope that the next 10 years will be the same 😀

L&E FEATURE – Tennis Academy 

Adventure, Sport and Creative activities are always offered at our Camps but there are few L&E Extra courses that are a little more specialised.  Here we look in detail at our Tennis Academy…

South Camp only (1 Week max)

Just as Wimbledon, the oldest and most prestigious tennis tournament in the world ends for the year in nearby London, boys and girls will have the opportunity to improve their tennis skills at L&E Tennis Academy at South Camp.  

Along with expert tuition from our tennis coaches and first rate facilities at Forres Sandle Manor School the players have the perfect setting to improve their racquet skills.  As well as perfecting court skills the players will receive seminars on fitness training, nutrition, respect and patience.  

To ensure this is a week the players will never forget we will take them to visit the famous All England Club, Wimbledon for a tour.  They will get up close and personal with the Championship trophies and clothing & equipment donated by many of the top players.  Of course they will get to see Centre Court and the player’s entrance and even get a tase of what it is like behind the scenes in the BBC Studio.  

“Expert tennis coaching with a trip to see Centre court at the world famous Wimbledon”

  • 5 day Coaching programme delivered by qualified coaches
  • Tennis seminars on fitness training, nutrition & respect.
  • Elite Tennis facilities at private school with all equipment provided for the week
  • Tour of the All England Club, Wimbledon including Centre Court visit
  • Exclusive L&E Tennis training kit 

See previous L&E Newsletter