Name and Title:
Lauren Kasnett Nearpass, Co-Founder, also pictured Michele Schifrin, COO
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | www.summer365.com | Main Office: 646-543-8726
How many years have you been in business in NYC?
Summer 365 just celebrated its 5 year anniversary. We are a complimentary consulting service for families specializing in overnight summer experiences for children and teens ages 7-18. Our incredible team offers expert, firsthand knowledge of more than 500 premiere sleepaway camps and programs to suit every age, interest and passion.
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
Although our company is five years young, we are seasoned camp professionals. My mother and business partner has worked in the industry for 20 years and I myself was a lifelong camper. My sister rounds out our team and shares the passion for camp built into our family DNA.
Summer 365 was born out of that fiery passion for camp and the desire to bring summer camp consulting to the 21st century! I believe in the life-changing, transformative power of a positive summer experience away from home and wanted to build a business to make it easier for parents to find that camp or program. While technology has made information more readily available, a simple Google search or crowdsourcing on Facebook won’t cut it when it comes to your child. The team at Summer 365 brings a modern, detailed, customized approach to navigate the search process (and simplify it!) to find whatever you’re looking for whether it’s a traditional summer camp, community service, performing arts, teen travel, or language immersion program (and the list goes on and on).
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
Summer 365 is less like a consultant you hired and more like a trusted friend whose opinion you can rely on. We are a team of mothers and former campers, counselors and camp directors who radiate enthusiasm and passion to each client we take on. As a parent myself, I understand that when it comes to your child you want to speak to an actual person who is there to field any question, big or small. With that in mind, Summer 365 “Counselors” take a holistic approach to your summer search and will work with you one-on-one until together you have identified the perfect summer for your child.
But that’s not all that sets us apart. We believe that every child deserves the gift of summer camp. That’s why we have made it part of our mission to create a special scholarship fund - GIVE SUM - for families who would otherwise not be able to afford to send their children to camp.
What is your favorite part of your job?
Like any matchmaker, my greatest joy is making that successful “match” and watching the fruits of the relationship blossom. I truly love getting to know each family we work with, and finding the perfect match to ensure peace of mind for the parent and a summer the child will never forget.
I also get to go back to camp as an adult! I spend my summers visiting camps and programs with my team to get a first-hand view of everything in action.
What is your favorite secret NYC spot?
Living in the city, I relish time spent outdoors with my daughter, Stevie. Our favorite neighborhood green space might not be a secret, but when the sun is shining we head to The Battery. I love a good old fashioned picnic with a spread of sweet and savory treats and, of course, some mom juice.
How do you benefit mamas?
First and foremost, Summer 365 is here to make the process of selecting a camp or summer program seamless and stress-free for all the mamas. We are here to be your team of translators, counselors, coaches, navigators and research junkies. But Summer 365 is more than just a matchmaker for your child and their summer plan. We believe that all mamas will reap the benefits of children who return from an amazing summer with more self-confidence, self-esteem, and independence. A fulfilling summer provides treasured memories and friendships, while advancing core growth and developmental milestones.
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
I’m a true camper at heart, so a thank you by received by “snail mail” is my most treasured. One client sent a handwritten note to let me know the scale of impact a summer at camp had on their daughter year-round. This child struggled with anxiety and self-esteem issues. Thanks in part to the safe space for growth and development overnight camp had afforded her, my client’s daughter transformed into a confident preteen who was able to taper her frequent therapy sessions.
What is your "mantra" / words to live by?
It takes a village. This mantra applies to both of my full-time jobs - it takes a village to raise children and it takes a village to build a business. I’m so grateful for my own amazing support system and family that has allowed me to succeed at both.
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick?
Prepare, prepare, prepare! I simply don’t know where all the hours go, but I do know my day gets off to a good start when I do a little extra the night before. Clothes for kids (and adults!) laid out, lunches prepped and my Google calendar updated cuts down on the morning chaos. The same goes for selecting the right summer experience - preparation is key. Give yourself plenty of time to search, ideally one year in advance to have the opportunity to tour camps while they are in session.