Welcome to Our International Guests

We would like to take a moment to introduce you to the Bark Lake Leadership  and Conference Centre. As you consider this website, you may learn more about us, where we are, our programs, our people and our facilities. Because we realize that your needs are unique, we have dedicated this page on our website to you, our International Guests and their Parents.

We are very excited you may be joining us this summer when we will host guests from over 15 different countries around the world, including… Brazil, Russia, Mexico, China, Japan, Ukraine, Argentina, Israel, Korea, Ethiopia and more!

The Bark Lake Advantage

Bark Lake Leadership and Conference Centre has earned its reputation as one of the finest Outdoor Education and Leadership centres in Canada for the excellence and range of its programs, the low camper to staff ratio, the clarity of vision, and the leadership and team building focus. Since 1948, groups from around Ontario and the world, searching for the most nurturing, motivating, challenging, and safe camp, have entrusted their campers to the Bark Lake Staff. Finding the right program is an important decision; being away from home, particularly for the first time, is a major commitment and adjustment for any child and their parents.

The Bark Lake Leadership and Conference Centre offers year round Outdoor Education & Leadership programs for groups aged 10 and up, and a Canadian Summer Camp experience as a stop on the Columbia International ESL Summer Camp (opens in a new window). We are located just two hours north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada on beautiful Bark Lake. Our unique location, directly bordering a fresh water lake in the midst of over 2500 acres of wilderness forest, allows us to offer an unprecedented range of activities and opportunities. While our Challenge course and waterfront programs are highly regarded, we also take pride in the quality and variety of our other adventure initiatives and activities, our facilities…and great Canadian food…yes, we will provide tasty ‘Canadian’ meals and snacks, as this is a uniquely Canadian Experience.

Groups will arrive by bus and will be greeted by our enthusiastic and friendly Staff. They will then be led on a tour of our property and facilities and each assigned to an equipped cabin or dormitory, for resting and attending to their personal needs…these facilities are segregated…males are not permitted in the females’ quarters. Chaperones and CIC Staffers will be supervising at all times…day and night.

Programs are designed for challenge and mastery in a fun, recreational environment. All instruction is provided by highly qualified and certified coaches, educators & instructors. Our goal is to allow each guest to improve their perceptions through leadership development and involvement with positive role models in a great outdoor education facility. We are a ‘challenge by choice’ facility that accents individual and team skill building and fundamentals and are committed to all guests in the transfer of skills & knowledge through experiential learning. If you ‘choose’ to come, you will be challenged!

For over 65 years, Bark Lake Leadership and Conference Centre has been a safe place where students learn to overcome obstacles, grow as individuals, bond as a group and develop into adults who are excited about meeting life’s challenges.

Some international campers arrive on their first day not knowing much English. Some guests are jet lagged, having just arrived in Canada the night before. There will be some uncertainty in the beginning, but we take special care to ensure that all of our guests become acclimated to this unique environment. We also offer calling cards, post cards and ‘tangible memories’ in our Tuck Shop and have pay phones onsite for calling home…cell phone and internet use may be irregular in the forest!

Maria Paterson
Assistant General Manager
Bark Lake Leadership and Conference Centre

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