We appreciate your patience and understanding as we determine how to safely offer incredible camp experiences while following guidelines from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), American Camp Association (ACA), state departments of health, and camp experts on current conditions. This FAQ serves as a living document that we intend to update regularly as we gear up for an amazing summer.
We hope to see you at camp!
Day Camp COVID-19 FAQs
(This FAQ is intended for Day Camp Ihduhapi, Manitou, Christmas Tree, Heritage, Kici Yapi, Streefland, Spring Lake, and DayCroix camper families and is subject to change.)
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Are YMCA Camps planning to run this summer?
We are planning to provide children with what will surely be a much-needed, fun-filled summer camp experience; however, we may need to adjust the program in order to continue to prioritize the health of our campers and team members. We are working with our state’s Department of Health, our accrediting agency, the American Camp Association (ACA), and the CDC to ensure we are fully prepared to offer the same values-based, mission-driven summer camp experience we have been providing for many years. Summer programs will be running as scheduled, with modifications to some programming.
Will transportation to and from camp be adjusted for safety?
Modifications to ensure the health and safety of our staff and participants can be expected and may include adjusted bus stops/routes, reduced bus capacity, and limited family members at drop off while remaining in vehicles. Please stay up to date with specific information on our websites and social media.
Is there Before/After Care?
Care may be provided at camps, local schools or YMCA branches. Please reach out to Customer Service or websites for specific site information.
How many people will be in groups? And onsite daily?
All camps will be following ACA and CDC safety guidelines. Daily capacities vary for each site.
How are activities and programs going to be modified?
With safety and guidelines in place, we are able to safely run most of our program areas.
- Campers and staff will wear masks when indoors, or outdoors when they cannot maintain a canoe-length distance from another group.
- Multi-group activities/programs will take place outside and utilize physical distance.
- Activities/programs will occur in smaller groups, based on state guidance for group gathering sizes, while maintaining the exciting, expanded camp feel.
- Program planning will include reducing shared equipment, increasing sanitization of surface areas and program supplies, utilizing outdoor spaces, and maintaining distance.
- Campers will not gather in large groups, such as in the Amphitheater.
- Field trips and offsite camps will only occur in outdoor spaces and other YMCA camp locations – there will be no interaction with the public.
How will you be screening campers and staff for COVID-19?
We will follow guidance received from health experts. Appropriate health screenings and modified procedures can be expected at both bus stops and drop off.
We strongly recommend a quarantine period before arriving to camp defined as:
- Avoiding all non-essential travel and gatherings, including but not limited to restaurants, social gatherings, etc.
- Mask wearing in groups and indoor spaces outside of home environment.
- 6 feet physical distancing in groups outside of home environment.
- Conscious awareness of risk factors associated with COVID transmission.
- Immunity boosting practices: rest, vitamins, healthy diet, etc…
Our summer staff will follow the same practices listed above. Additionally, in both Minnesota and Wisconsin, our staff are eligible to receive the vaccine as a YMCA employee.
Will participants and staff be required to wear masks?
Participants will wear masks indoors and on buses. Staff will wear masks in enclosed spaces, including buses, buildings, or whenever a 6 foot distance cannot be maintained.
How will you be separating anybody suspected of having COVID-19?
We will continue to adhere to guidance from the CDC, our state department of health and local officials. Any camper or staff that exhibits symptoms will activate our Covid Response Plan, which will include immediately separating from our camp population and isolating in a safe, dedicated space until we are able to have a caregiver pick them up from camp.
Are staff prepared and trained to handle any outbreak of COVID-19?
Staff will receive training on a Covid Response Plan prior to opening, and regular reviews of our policies and procedures will be an ongoing part of the summer.
What is camp doing to protect campers and team members while at camp?
We are making changes to our camp protocols which include how campers and staff will be screened before coming to camp, hygiene procedures, social distancing, and extra vigilance around building and bathroom sanitation. There will be more handwashing and hand sanitizer stations located throughout camp. Regular handwashing and good hygiene practices will be required. We will be deep cleaning our high traffic buildings and equipment with more frequency.
What is your cancellation policy?
If our program offering this summer changes as a result of current circumstances, or your ability to attend camp changes, please know we will work with each of you. If we need to cancel a program, a refund will be generated (including deposit), and no action is necessary. If you would like to cancel your camp session, we will provide a few options:
- Donate: Instead of a refund, you could make it a donation to support the continued work of YMCA Camps.
- Refund and donate: Do both. Consider taking a partial refund and making a partial donation. (Deposit is non-refundable)
Please contact our Customer Service Center to assist with any cancellation questions.
Is there financial support available to help me pay for camp?
Yes. As always, we never want to turn anyone away because of their financial situation. Please consider reaching out for financial assistance, we want campers to be able to experience camp this summer: https://www.ymcanorth.org/scholarships.
How can I help?
We are beyond grateful to the members of our community – our alumni, guests, camper families, volunteers, and staff – who have recognized the challenge a crises like this can pose to a human services organization and have showed up to support us. For those who are able and interested, please make a gift here. You can also see an updated Wish List located on GIVE pages of our camp websites. THANK YOU for your support of children and families during these uncertain times.