2021 ICF Award Recipients

2021 Abbott Fenn Druzhba Award:

The Abbott Fenn Druzhba Award is a special recognition of an individual, camp, or organization, which has made a significant and sustained contribution to international camping. The endowed contribution for the award was made by Abbott Fenn, a long-standing, active member of the American Camp Association and former owner/director of the Keewaydin Camps in New England, U.S.A. The award is given to those who spread the benefit of the camp experience to improve world understanding.


Mr. Toshio Hoshino (JAPAN)

Professor at Meiji University

Past president of NCAJ (National Camping Association of Japan) 2014-2020

Board Chairman of Japan Outdoor Education Society

Member of the Expertise Council on Policy Evaluation, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology

Mr. Hoshino was born in Tochigi Prefecture in 1951, where people still live with nature, and this is where he enjoyed gathering things and outdoor play in forests and rivers in his childhood.

He specialized in outdoor education, or various outdoor activities such as camping, skiing, and mountaineering in the professional course at Tokyo University of Education where he recognized the value of outdoor education. He continued his research at Master Course of Tsukuba University and also studied abroad in the United States and he conducted research to collect information on different countries.

Utilizing his knowledge, he served as the chairman of the executive committee of the National Outdoor Education Conference, the board of directors of the Japan Outdoor Education Society, and other important positions, and made significant contributions to the promotion of outdoor education in Japan. In particular, he served as camp director for 11 years of the Frontier Adventure Camp, which was implemented as part of the “Promotion Program for Challenge of Natural Life” proposed by the then Ministry of Education in 1988. At the time, 11-day, 10-night long camps were rare in Japan, and he was the pioneer of the long camp.

He has written many books and articles on outdoor education and outdoor activities.

In the National Camping Association of Japan, he became a member of the Technical Committee in 1987, and served on the Planning, International and Leadership Development Committees, before being appointed to the Board of Directors in 1994, and then as Executive Director in 2000. Furthermore, in 2007 NCAJ applied for the ”designated management” of a facility for outdoor activity in Shizuoka Prefecture, which was the first attempt by the association, he drew on his experience and NCAJ won the selection from Shizuoka Prefecture. Now he is still active in NCAJ as an advisor to the association.

Mr. Hoshino’s involvement with ICF began in 1987.

In 1986, while studying abroad at the Northern Illinois University, he wrote an article “Group Dynamics in Japanese and American Camp Programs” in Camping Magazine. The following year, he presented his findings at the 2nd ICC in 1987, where he participated with Sachiko Tanaka and Fumio Morooka.

When the ICC was invited to Tokyo in 2000, he played a key role in the Organizing Committee and the Executive Committee and led the conference to success. After ICC2000, there was a movement to bring international information and networking to Japan, and many Japanese leaders have since become involved in international exchange. In addition, Mr. Hoshino’s call for ICC 2000 provided an opportunity for organizations, groups, and the government, which had been working separately until then, to come together to develop camping and outdoor education. In 2016, he was the President of NCAJ, when they successfully held the 6th Asia-Oceania Camping Conference to celebrate the 50th anniversary of NCAJ`s founding.


2021 ICF Letter of Merit:

The ICF Letter Award of Merit recognizes a significant contribution made by an individual, camp or organization to the cause of world understanding and peace through camping.

Campamento Santa Ursula / Ursula Lavin (MEXICO)

Camp Santa Ursula has started a nationwide initiative to create awareness about ecology through the camp experience, the program is called “Camps por el planeta” or “Camps for our planet”. Santa Ursula is one of the most recognized camps in Mexico with many years of experience.

This program involves all the camps that are members of the Mexican Camp Association. The program is based on three main pillars:

1)       Our planet: Reduce impact

2)       Our People: Impact the lives of the people around camp and around our lives.

3)       Memorable Values: Teach, save, look after, coexist and love.

The idea is to have 60-minute activities during camp where we can focus kids’ attention and learning towards the objectives of the program. And help them develop their own strategies to be implemented back home. The program is also implemented in local schools at no cost without kids having to travel to camp.