Teaching what matters most
Camp Ondessonk, the outdoor ministries department of the Diocese of Belleville, believes that work within the Catholic Faith doesn’t end when our last summer campers head for home. In keeping with our mission and vision statements year-round, Camp Ondessonk hosts a number of school groups and youth groups providing outdoor education and experiential
Camp Ondessonk, set amidst rolling pastures and hardwood forests, boasts 981 acres of sandstone hills and canyons. Our unique location provides an ideal setting for learning experientially through the outdoors.
Since 1988 Camp Ondessonk has provided an interdisciplinary Outdoor Education program for Catholic and non-Catholic schools from Illinois, Missouri, Indiana, and Kentucky. Each school year we serve over 1,500 students in our rustic facilities situated in the heart of the Shawnee National Forests rolling hills, dramatic sandstone canyons and Oak-Hickory woodlands. Camp Ondessonk has served thousands of children in its summer camp program since being established in 1959.
What We Do
Camp Ondessonk works closely with educators and group leaders to create a dynamic experiential curriculum providing students with hands-on learning. An Ondessonk Outdoor Education experience promotes group building, communication skills, and leadership development as well as creates a sense of stewardship towards the natural world. Our programs focus on the principles of interdependence, in particular one’s relationship to the natural world as well as a relationship with the people around them. A school program at Ondessonk also promotes a student’s personal growth in the areas of self-esteem, trust and teamwork.
Our program offerings include outdoor education classes, equestrian education activities, as well adventure and leadership activities.
For information regarding activity selections, lodging, and other information:
For more information and reservations, please contact: