This Orlando summer camp provides a safe space for girls looking to learn about music

Camp offers sliding scale so families pay what they can afford

The Orlando Girls Rock Camp provides a safe and inclusive space for girls, trans and gender non-binary youth ages 8 to 17 who want to learn about music.

ORLANDO, Fla. – The Orlando Girls Rock Camp provides a safe and inclusive space for girls, trans and gender non-binary youth ages 8 to 17 who want to learn about music.

Campers form their own bands, write original songs and perform as a group. Camp was held virtually last year but this year, it will be an in-person experience. No previous musical experience is required and all experience levels are welcome.

“The world is kind of unfolding right in front of our students and our campers and they’re kind of seeing the political discourse that’s happening and they’re participating in it to some degree and it’s important for them to have spaces to be themselves. There might be situations where campers can’t be themselves at home or at school and camp provides a place where they can not only learn about who they are and be themselves, but also meet other campers who are like-minded as well,” said Monique Smith, the camp’s board chair.

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A typical day at camp begins with a meal and conversation.

“One of our big things is we want to make sure everyone feels well-nourished and fed. We have food available throughout the day. We never want anyone to feel self-conscious about wanting to eat,” said Mary Bucaro, the camp’s operations director.

From there, campers head off to instrument instruction and band practice. The camp also offers workshops on topics like body positivity.

“The kids are usually spending four hours a day with their band practicing, writing their song, jamming, having their fun. We have musical instruments everywhere, so if a kid comes up and they sign up for guitar but there’s a drum set they want to get on, please get on the drum set. We want you to play,” Bucaro said.

Orlando Girls Rock is a nonprofit and pricing is based on a sliding scale of what each family can afford. The group also accepts monetary donations as well as instrument donations.

Organizers told News 6 they currently have enough drum sets but are in need of large guitar amps.

They also offer a Ladies Rock Camp. For more information on how to sign up or donate, visit orlandogirlsrock.org.


About the Author:

Julie Broughton's career in Central Florida has spanned more than 14 years, starting with News 6 as a meteorologist and now anchoring newscasts.