Ann Arbor YMCA summer camp offers new gender neutral housing

Generic photo of children at summer camp. (Pixabay)

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Campers can now choose to stay in gender-neutral housing this summer at the YMCA’s Camp Al-Gon-Quian in northern Michigan.

Located on Burt Lake, the residential camp has historically been separated into female and male spaces. While campers can choose where which areas they live in, the Y has designated cabins for those who do not identify with either area, YMCA officials said in a statement.

“At the Ann Arbor YMCA, we strive to be a welcoming and inclusive nonprofit organization for the LGBTQ Community and to give youth a voice in the types of programs and services we offer. We want individuals to know they can be their authentic selves at Camp AGQ and all of our sites,” said Ann Arbor YMCA president and CEO Toni Kayumi in a release.

Each Camp Al-Gon-Quian cabin hosts between seven to nine campers and two or three counselors, according to the camp website.

Attendees have their own bunk and area for personal items in addition to a bath facility and privacy stalls for hygiene needs, the YMCA said.

The summer program will offer several sessions, a mini-camp and a family camp throughout June, July and August. Sessions lengths range between 4-13 days.

Camp sessions are designed for campers ages 8-16, with the mini-camp intended for children ages 6-9. Activities include horseback riding, archery and climbing.

Registration is already available for Ann Arbor YMCA members, returning campers and alumni. Registration opens at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, January 11 for non-members and new families.

The Y offers safe spaces for LGBT youth including designated pool time through its Out to Swim program, pride watch parties and gender embodiment classes.

Learn more about the summer residential camp here.

About the Author:

Sarah has worked for WDIV since June 2018. She covers community events, good eats and small businesses in Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in Applied Linguistics from Grand Valley State University.