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Our COVID-19 Safety Protocols

Our Summer 2021 Covid-19 safety protocols, with the partnership of our camp families, support us in operating camp safely while mitigating the risk of coronavirus.

Protocols for Summer 2021:

We’ve linked the State Guidelines for you to refer to as you wish, and ask that you please read the major takeaways and site-specific protocols/implications for our program below. If the state or local Heath Departments make any updates to their guidance that affects our protocols, camp families will be notified.

1. Screening

In accordance with the State and CDC guidelines, there will be ongoing screening of all campers and staff throughout the summer. For two weeks leading up to the start of camp, parents/guardians are required to monitor, record, and report your child/ren’s temperature and any symptoms. You must also monitor yourself and the other members of your household.

Once camp begins, parents/guardians must continue to screen their camper(s) for symptoms and report that screening via a daily questionnaire. Campers and staff also have their temperatures taken by designated staff each morning (before entering campus, or boarding camp buses) to further screen for fever.

Parents/guardians must also continue to monitor themselves and the other members of their household for symptoms throughout the summer.

2. Group Size and Cohorting

There are 15-16 campers per group. Each group at camp is its own pod or cohort, essentially functioning as a household. Campers within a pod do not need to maintain 6-feet of distance from one another when outdoors. Different pods do not interact with one another, and must wear face coverings if a situation necessitates them coming within 6-feet of one another. The intention behind keeping pods separate is to reduce and contain any risk of spread of a communicable disease. Having static pods that do not come in direct contact with one another also allows for the Health Department to perform clear and complete contact tracing in the event that there is a case of COVID-19 at camp. More on contact tracing and quarantining below.

3. Face Coverings

Acceptable face coverings include cloth-based 2-ply face coverings and disposable masks that securely cover both the mouth and nose. Bandanas, buffs and face shields are not acceptable face coverings.

 

For campers:

Each child must wear their own clean face covering when arriving at camp each day, or when boarding and riding the bus to camp, and must keep it on through the arrival process. Face coverings are also required whenever campers are indoors. Campers have the option to remove their face covering when outdoors. Face coverings are then worn again at dismissal and for the duration of bus rides home.

For staff:

Fully vaccinated staff members must wear face coverings during arrival and dismissal, and whenever indoors. Fully vaccinated staff members have the option to remove their face covering when outdoors, but are required to wear them when interacting closely with a camper or another staff member (within 3 feet, face-to-face). 

Any staff member who is not fully vaccinated must wear a face covering at all times while at camp–both indoors and outdoors. 

4. Vaccination Record-Keeping

All campers and staff are required to report their COVID-19 vaccination status (and dates of vaccine doses if applicable) on their Health History Form. Vaccinated individuals must also upload their COVID-19 Vaccination Card to their CampInTouch account.

5. Indoor/Outdoor Time

We do everything outdoors (even more than usual!), weather permitting. The only time campers are indoors is when they first drop their things off in the morning, and whenever they have to use the bathroom, grab their lunch, or change. In the case of light rain, we stay outside, wear our raingear, and use canopied/covered outdoor spaces. In the case of severe weather/thunderstorms, we move programming indoors, and each group is visited by activity leaders in their respective rooms.

6. Transportation

For daily bus routes and any transportation of a single group off-site: campers, staff, and the driver are required to wear face coverings for the duration of the ride. Seating is arranged to ensure the maximum possible distance is maintained between each camper. Windows are open for constant ventilation (barring inclement weather). Campers are seated from the rear of the vehicle to the front, to create the maximum possible distance between campers and driver. Campers sit in the same seats for each day/leg of the trip. Vehicles are sanitized between trips.

7. Ventilation and Traffic

All windows and doors are kept open wherever feasible, to increase ventilation within indoor spaces. Bidirectional traffic is reduced indoors through delineated foot traffic flows within camp buildings. Tape and signs denote 6 feet apart spacing for any common areas such as restrooms.

High traffic times such as arrival and dismissal will be staggered to facilitate social distancing, decrease congestion, and ensure campers from different groups are not coming in direct contact.

8. Cleaning and Sanitization

Throughout camp, there is limited sharing of objects (we share in other, less tangible ways!). We sanitize any objects that are required to be shared (example: bows and arrows), and practice proper hand hygiene when handling these objects.

Hands of all campers and staff are washed before and after each activity. If not possible at a given location, and for other times during the day, every staff member also carries hand sanitizer for camper and staff use.

9. Contact Tracing/Quarantine Measures

In the case of a Camper/Staff Member:

If a child is exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms, they must stay home from camp. If symptoms present at camp, the child is isolated and picked up by their parent/guardian immediately. In either scenario, the parent/guardian must then contact their child’s physician. The physician determines whether the child’s symptoms warrant testing. If the physician determines that the child doesn’t need to get tested, they must issue documented clearance so the child may return to camp. If testing is indicated, the child cannot come back unless they test negatively twice. These same measures apply to staff members as well.

If a case of COVID-19 is suspected or identified in a camper or staff member, The Nature Place alerts the Rockland County Health Department. The health department then traces all contacts and “the State and local health departments may, under their legal authority, implement monitoring and movement restrictions of infected or exposed persons including home isolation or quarantine.”

If a camper/staff member tests positive, they must enter home quarantine, and the Department of Health will determine the quarantine’s length. 

If a camper/staff member tests positive, all members of their pod must enter home quarantine as directed by the health department, who will communicate guidelines for when they can return to camp.

With all of this, we ask that families and staff err on the side of caution.


In the case of a Parent/Guardian or Household Member:

Please read the following from the State Guidelines, regarding protocols that would be followed if a parent/guardian of a camper exhibits symptoms or tests positive for COVID-19:

In the event that a parent/guardian of a camper must be isolated because they have tested positive for, or exhibited symptoms of, COVID-19, the parent/ guardian must be advised that they cannot enter the site for any reason, including picking up their child.

If the parent/guardian – who is a member of the same household as the child/camper – is exhibiting signs of COVID-19 or has been tested and is positive for the virus, utilize an emergency contact authorized by the parent to come pick up the child. As a ‘close contact,’ the child/camper must not return to the child care or day camp for the duration of the quarantine.

If the parent/guardian– who is a member of the same household as the child/camper – is being quarantined as a precautionary measure, without symptoms or a positive test, staff should walk out or deliver the child/camper to the parent/guardian at the boundary of, or outside, the premises. As a ‘contact of a contact’ the child/camper may return to the child care or day camp during the duration of the quarantine.

If a child/camper or their household member becomes symptomatic for COVID-19 and/or tests positive, the child must quarantine and may not return or attend the child care or day camp program until after quarantine is complete.

10. Food

In order to minimize risk we do not provide snacks at camp. Campers bring their own snacks for snack time each day. For lunch, families have the option to pack their own lunch or purchase an individually packed lunch from the Threefold Cafe. For Overnight trips, campers bring their dinner to camp with them, to be eaten later that evening on their overnight trip. Camp provides breakfast and lunch on the day following the overnight.

11. Overnights and Day Hikes

We are excited to offer onsite overnights and offsite camping trips, where campers are assigned their own non-shared tent and bring their own dinner as outlined above. Campers also embark on offsite Day Hikes. Overnights and Day Hikes are not shared between groups, but rather separated by cohort. 

12. Visitors, Venders, and You

We are required to prohibit non-essential visitors on our site. Any pick-ups and deliveries are made in a designated location away from campers and staff. There is a designated ingress and egress on the perimeter of camp for parents/guardians picking up/dropping off their camper outside of regular arrival and dismissal times. Parents/guardians are not permitted onsite. 

In an extenuating circumstance where a visitor absolutely must come on site, temperature checks and screenings will be conducted.

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