European Mensa Juniors Camps
The European Mensa Juniors Camps (EMJC) are planned as international camps for 12- to 17-year-old gifted teenagers. There will be project work, lectures, excursions and a lot of time to play board games and to talk to other people with a similar set of mind.
Questions & Answers
Who may attend the EMJC?
The EMJC is aimed at gifted people between the age of 12 and 17, but it is open for anyone inside that age range. You will not be asked for a proof of giftedness. Mensa USA has compiled a list of characteristics gifted juniors often feature, so you can check whether you feel you fall into that scheme.
Why should I do so?
Because of the atmosphere. If you are gifted, you probably often feel surrounded by people who do not seem to understand you. Spending time among people who do is gorgeous.
How will a typical day at an EMJC look like?
The day will start with a breakfast. You can decide yourself when you want to eat, but you should be ready to start your project at 09:00. Until 12:00 you will spend time there. Then lunch will be served. Afterwards all participants and leaders of the camp will come together to discuss topical issues. That assembly should only take some minutes.
With that the obligatory part of the day is over and you can decide yourself what to do with the rest of the day: There will be excursions, afternoon lectures or sports offered, but you can also decide just to sit with others and chat or play board games. As long as you stay in groups of at least 3 people you are also free to leave the hostel.
After dinner there will be evening programme. That could for example be a quiz, a literature evening, a dance evening, a performance evening or a casino night. Instead, you can also just discuss quantum mechanics, the world revolution or perichoresis with other participants or just play board games throughout the night.
When will the next EMJC happen?
Well, in fact no EMJC has ever happened yet. What has been described applies to the Mensa Juniors Camps that have been taking place in Germany for more than 20 years, but to have a camp in English and explicitly invite people from all over Europe has not been attempted yet.
Barring the pandemics still forbidding to gather by then, the first EMJC is supposed to happen summer 2022.
What if I do not have school holidays right then?
In Germany, it is up to each school to decide whether a pupil is allowed to miss school for some days to attend a Mensa Juniors Camp. Mensa Germany can provide a document stating that our camps contribute both to the participants' education and to their personal development. You have to check what the process is for your country and your school. Get in touch with us for support.
Where will it happen?
In a youth hostel somewhere in Germany. We will try to find a hostel close to an international airport.
How do I get there?
The transport there and back home you have to arrange yourself. We regard our responsibility to take care of you to start first when you check in at the hostel and to end when you check out. However we will provide a list of all participants including their residence (not the street address, but the town or village) so maybe you will find someone to travel together with. Moreover, some of our leaders will be at the airport and at the next train station to welcome you, to explain the local public transport or to accompany you to the hostel.
Travelling abroad on my own seems a little bit scary, no?
Yep, we understand that. Going abroad on your own can feel adventurous. But the EMJC may be worth the courage, Germany is a safe country to visit and with good preparation, you might ask yourself afterwards what you had been afraid of before. And if you really do not feel ready for it: There will be another EMJC.
What is it going to cost?
Before we have decided upon the hostel we cannot answer that question. But we expect a price around 400 EUR.
What is included in the price?
Accommodation, three meals a day (the first day dinner only, the last day breakfast only), all programme such as the project, the afternoon and evening activities including public transport and entrance fees during excursions. Not included is the transport to the hostel and back home.
How do I apply?
There will be a certain time frame in which applications can be submitted. As soon as the application period starts, available beds will be assigned on a first-come-first-serve basis.
If you want to be informed when the application time will start, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the EMJC newsletter. There, you will also be informed about the concrete procedure. No worries, there won't be too many emails sent out.
How do I become youth leader at the EMJC?
Just contact the organiser, see next answer. Generally we expect the following from our leaders:
- Time to prepare a project and to attend the EMJC.
- Motivation to create a safe environment for gifted juniors, to spend time with them and to offer program to them. Being a youth leader is fun, but we shall put the needs of our participants first.
- Serenity to stay objective and respectful even when emotional things are discussed with time pressing. The leading team sometimes has to make difficult decisions without much time. Also you should be prepared to implement a decision that you do not like. (Don't worry, you won't be expected to burden your conscience in any way.)
- Proof that you have not committed any crime against children. These things are handled differently in different countries but usually some authority should issue you a document. We'll discuss that.
- Basic knowledge of first aid. In some countries that is a school subject in other countries you need to visit a course before taking your driver's license. Again, we'll solve that one.
- Declaration that you will follow our guidelines regarding prevention of sexual harassment and data protection. There will be a short course prior to the EMJC after which you have to sign some documents.
Committment as a youth leader is voluntary. All your expenses will be paid, such as material for your project, travel, board and lodge. There will be a financial courtesy but no regular payment.
I would like to contribute! I have another question!
Just email the organiser Jonathan: email@example.com