Living dreams

By on April 1, 2011

As spring chases away the chills of winter, countless families begin perusing summer camp brochures, eager to provide their children the fun and growth opportunities found only at camp.  This year, generous families can share those outdoor experiences with kids who wouldn’t have the chance otherwise.  Non-profit organization Living Dreams has teamed up with leading camp provider English Adventure to launch Camp Living Dreams for orphans and abused children in Japan.  Children who don’t always have much to hope for can now enjoy a thrilling, and potentially life changing, summer camp experience.

Across Japan, 552 “Children’s Homes” shelter more than 30,000 children.  Not only do these children lack the benefits of a traditional home with loving parents, most are victims of child abuse.  “Many children living in these homes are actually not orphans. Closer to 75% of the children are forcibly removed from their home because a family member is abusing them in some manner. These children end up struggling with issues of guilt and post-traumatic stress disorder. The trauma erodes motivation levels and many children have a bleak outlook on their own futures. For example, the idea of attending university is so far removed from their reality,” according to Living Dreams Executive Director, Amy Moyers-Knopp.  “Our mission at Living Dreams is to create consistent opportunities for children–to help them find inspiration, build confidence and receive critical guidance and support. Through Learning, Arts, Sports, and Technology programs, children can acquire expansive skills and enjoy positive experiences. It is our hope that through these experiences, dreams can develop and kids will have the tools–and the courage–to follow them through.”

Camp Living Dreams brings together the non-profit’s ability to reach out to children in need, and English Adventure’s expertise in creating American-style camps and outdoor programs.  English Adventure has made an initial commitment to welcome 20 children to their 2011 Mountain Summer Camp, a five-day residential camp in Chichibu, Saitama.

“Camp changes kids and stays with them for a lifetime, and we’re thrilled to share it with kids who deserve all the support they can get,” says Dave Paddock, president of English Adventure.  Paddock added that English Adventure is working with Living Dreams to identify Children’s Homes that they can work with year after year, allowing children to return to camp and continue their growth.  “Rather than saying goodbye after a one-off event, we aim to develop ongoing connections with the kids, sharing mentoring and encouragement along with the confidence and inspiration that camp and the outdoors can provide.”


Camp Living Dreams has already received a sizable donation from Tokyo International School’s Parent Student Association, and efforts are underway to secure the remaining funding required.  If you’d like to help change a child’s life, you can send a donation to one of the accounts shown below.  Contributions will be used exclusively for the Camp Living Dreams program.  Any funds in excess of this summer’s needs will be retained in an audited account, and used to continue and expand the program. Donors who wish to receive updates on Camp Living Dreams can email English Adventure to be added to the program mailing list.


Yachiyo Bank

Soshigaya Branch

Ordinary account #554147554147

Yugengaisha English Adventure

Paypal – direct payments to


NPO Living Dreams:

English Adventure:

The US Embassy-Tokyo, EWA is hosting its 17th annual Summer Camp program for ages 3½ to 12 years old inside the US Embassy housing compound in the heart of Tokyo. This is an all English speaking program with many fun activities for your child to enjoy and build wonderful cultural memories as well as a great opportunity to introduce or improve their English skills/confidence. Each session is from 9am to 4pm for one (1) week and you can sign up for as many weeks as you want. Due to high demand, we recommend early registration.  To register, you can download the application forms from

Tel: 03-3224-6796

Nanbo Discovery Camp‘s English-language, residential summer camp for elementary and middle school students is located in Chiba, two hours from Tokyo. Since 1999, campers have enjoyed an adventure of swimming, snorkeling, cycling, sports, exploration, science, cooking, discovery, arts and crafts and more. Whether our campers are learning about life in a tide pool, cycling, or preparing meals, they will have an active, positive and fun summer camp experience. They will also build confidence, relationships, overcome challenges and work together in a positive camp environment. Nine six-day/five-night sessions, low camper/staff ratio. Go out to Mobile Me Gallery to see photos of summer camp:

Tel: 090-7716-0102


Now in their 9th year, English Adventure lives up to their tagline – “happy campers” – with a high repeater rate from international and returnee families.

Nature education, outdoor adventure, and traditional American camp activities make English Adventure the choice for a well-rounded summer camp experience. Mountain and Ocean Summer Camps are all within a couple of hours of Tokyo, but a world away from city life.

English Immersion sessions are a pure American summer camp in 100% English.  English Challenge sessions offer the same exciting camp activities with bilingual support and English learning. Immersion and Challenge camps are run separately, to ensure maximum benefit for kids in each program.

English Adventure

Tel: 03-3415-8306

Mountain Summer Camp dates (Chichibu Saitama)          

6/27 – 7/01   Early Season Session – Immersion Program

7/25 – 7/29   Mountain 1 – Immersion Program

7/25 – 7/29   Mountain 1 – Challenge Program

8/01 – 8/05   Mountain 2 – Immersion Program

8/08 – 8/12   Mountain 3 – Immersion Program

8/08 – 8/12   Mountain 3 – Challenge Program

8/15 – 8/19   Mountain 4 – Immersion Program

Ocean Summer Camp Izu Oshima Tokyo

8/02 – 8/05 Immersion Program

Evergreen Outdoor Center offers 5-day and 12-day long summer camps for children and customized school trips. Based at scenic and pristine Lake Aokiko in Nagano prefecture, campers stay in lakeside cabins surrounded by green forests making them in touch with nature.  Guided by experienced counsellors, the campers.begin by observing and putting all their senses to work, something living in the urban environment  Campers can feel the air and water temperatures, listen to the animal sounds in the area and breath in fresh mountain air.

Getting into the mountains, the lake and rivers and exploring the forests firsthand come easily to children and they can get their feet wet (literally) in many fun and exciting outdoor sports.  These sports like canoeing, kayaking, mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing and canyoning are not competitive in their objectives but do instill and require friendly teamwork, the support of your friends and of course, the element of adventure that children lean towards naturally. Campers will also sleep in tents on an overnight camping trip away from their summer base camp at Lake Aokiko.

A large part of Evergreen’s summer tours are family oriented, so parents and kids, even grandparents can join in and participate. Evergreen’s combo day tours are also an affordable and fun option that includes two activities in a day as well as a healthy lunch from their organic “Roots Cafe”.


Tel: 0261-72-5150 Fax: 0261-72-8056

E-mail: (check for dates and summer camp registration forms.)

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