Mission: To enable and inspire all young people especially those from disadvantaged circumstances to realize their full potential as productive, responsible and caring citizens.
Core belief: We believe that young people will achieve extraordinary things when they are provided with high quality programs and facilities in an environment that promotes respect, responsibility and fun.
Camp Mendocino is an outdoor education and environmental awareness program focused on character and leadership development. Located in a 2,000 acre beautiful redwood forest three-and-a-half hours north of San Francisco, Camp Mendocino offers programs that are clearly unique to those offered at our eight Clubhouses in San Francisco. As with all of our programs at Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco, kids learn respect for others and themselves and are given a safe space to learn, grow, and succeed, while being surrounded with positive role models 24-hours a day.
About Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco
Part of the community since 1891, Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco (BGCSF) currently serves 1,715 youth (ages six to 18) per day. We serve more than 18,000 youth per year at 15 program sites—including eight Clubhouses located in the neighborhoods with the fewest resources, one extension site, five school-based sites and Camp Mendocino. BGCSF sites are open “when kids need us most” – after school, on most school holidays and during the summer.
Youth Development Approach
Camp Mendocino staff and programs, along with support for our eight SF-based Clubhouses, come together to create stability, consistency, and a sense of physical and emotional safety for our campers. Our youth development professionals serve each day as positive role models who provide ongoing caring relationships with our youth.
Staff work to develop moral character and instill a sense of belonging, competence, usefulness, and influence. They make Camp feel like home, fostering a family atmosphere and creating a sense of ownership for campers.
Our Green Initiative
Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco and Camp Mendocino model environmental sustainability for our young people and their families and the communities we work in. In order to achieve sustainability, we have created a “Green Initiative” with three main areas of focus:
Conserve: we seek to conserve resources to be a good global citizen and to effectively manage expenses.
Recycle: we reduce the amount of waste generated in our facilities by using less new materials, optimizing the recovery of materials for re-use and recycling, as well as composting waste.
Explore: we believe that exploring nature is a critical component of environmental sustainability. We give our campers opportunities to experience and appreciate the great outdoors, and hope they develop habits for a lifetime.
Camp Mendocino is owned and operated by Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco, a 127-year old San Francisco institution dedicated to the youth who need us most. BGCSF is a nationally recognized leader in youth development.
In 1931, San Francisco Boys Club leased 250 acres from the Union Lumber Company in Mendocino County in order to offer a camping experience to kids from San Francisco. The Club named the 250 acres Camp Marwedel after C.W. Marwedel, the Boys Club Board President and driving force behind the program.
The Club purchased this land and nearly 1,000 additional acres from the Union Lumber Company in 1941. The funds were raised from George Whitney, the owner of Playland at the Beach and other members of the San Francisco Rotary Club and the Board of the Boys Club. Over the years additional acres have been donated or purchased. Today the Camp sits on nearly 2,000 acres, all dedicated to the character and leadership development of kids from disadvantaged circumstances.
In 1967, Camp Marwedel was renamed Camp Mendocino. With the admission of girls in 1985, the Club became the San Francisco Boys & Girls Club. After the merger with Columbia Park Boys & Girls Clubs, the name was changed to Boys & Girls Clubs of San Francisco.