Day Camp Safety
We are ready to serve your family safely.
Our day camp serves children at multiple locations throughout West Michigan. Register now for available sessions or future programming that will allow your child to explore, make friends, build lasting memories, and have a great time!
As we welcome your child to an enriching Y program experience, we want to assure families that the safety and wellness of our campers, families, and staff is our top priority and remains at the forefront of all of the decisions we make. We have put careful thought and planning into our updated Summer Day Camp programming.
We have followed guidance from the CDC, state, and local health experts to update our policies, practices and procedures that ensure the highest standards of cleanliness and hygiene. We have also made appropriate accommodations for social distancing so that every person who walks through our doors can stay safe and protected.
HOW DAY CAMPS LOOK DIFFERENT
Ensuring the health and safety of our Y community is a shared priority—key components of a healthy day camp include:
Regular Temperature Checks & Health Screenings: Both staff and children will receive temperature checks and health screenings before being allowed to start their work shift or to check in.
Designed for Social Distance: We are keeping children in the same group together and avoiding co-mingling of groups as much as possible. In addition to group social distancing, our programming will also promote social/physical distancing within the group.
Altered Drop-off and Pick-up Procedures: Parents will be asked to stay in the car and/or not enter the facilities. We are limiting access to the building for camp participants and staff only, parents will be asked to not enter program spaces. Each site has a phone number to call if someone is not readily available at the designated drop-off and pick-up spot.
PPE for All Staff & Youth: All staff will be required to wear masks and other personal protective equipment when in close interactions with youth. Youth are recommended to wear masks while inside, and at drop-off and pick-up times.
Regular Cleaning & Disinfecting: We will be cleaning with great frequency our equipment, facilities, and curriculum items between use and/or groups. Disinfecting will occur every thirty minutes to all high-touch surface areas. A third-party cleaning service will fog each of our facilities several times a week.
Stay Home if You’re Sick: We request parents partner with us in keeping our staff and campers healthy by monitoring the health of your children by not sending them to the program if they exhibit any symptom of COVID-19. If your child exhibits symptoms, you should seek COVID-19 testing promptly and report results to the YMCA given the implications for other children, families, and staff.
Yes, Branch and School-Based Camps have continued through the pandemic.
Because we know it is difficult for youth to practice consistent social distancing, we are structuring programs to social distance by group/cohort. Keeping children in the same group together and avoiding co-mingling of groups as much as possible. In addition to group social distancing, our programming will also promote social distancing within the group.
Staff will wear masks to the extent they are able to safely in the heat and will always where masks when close interactions with youth may be necessary, such as assisting in an activity like archery.
Additional elements of our structure include:
- Encouraging social distancing through activity design and reminders;
- Regular and frequent scheduled hand hygiene;
- Enhance cleaning and sanitation protocols of curriculum items between use and/or groups;
- Altered drop off and pick up procedures where parents will be asked to stay in the car and/or not enter the facilities;
- Limiting access to the building or camp to participants and staff, parents will be asked to not enter program spaces;
- Encouraging parents to monitor children’s temperature prior to attending programs and daily health screening by staff prior to entering programs;
- Daily staff health screening and temperature checks;
- Updated illness policy and partnership with parents to ensure only healthy children attend programs.
We request parents partner with us in keeping our staff and campers healthy by monitoring the health of your children by not sending them to the program if they exhibit any symptom of COVID-19. If your child exhibits symptoms, you should seek COVID-19 testing promptly and report results to the YMCA given the implications for other children, families, and staff.
The Y is following the guidance from the state and Center for Disease Control to implement effective disinfecting and sanitation practices. We will intentionally schedule at least one employee per day to be our “sanitizing champion”, and their sole responsibility is to clean and sanitize the program spaces. The following are examples of extra measures we will be taking:
- Removing objects that cannot be easily cleaned between use
- Not allowing materials brought into the program from outside, except for essentials (water bottle, sunscreen).
- Soft materials will be washed after each use, following the state’s protocol for cleaning fabric materials.
- Each program space will be going outside, weather permitting, for approximately 51% of the day. The outdoor play structures will be having limited use between groups and sanitized after each use, and all play materials used while playing outside will be thoroughly washed between each group.
- In addition to sanitizing during business hours, an outside cleaning company will be coming in to sanitize and spray the entire program space.
A YMCA staff member will conduct a health screen in the morning upon arrival. During the screening you will be asked to answer the following questions concerning your camper(s)' current health:
- Have you or anyone in your family been in contact with someone who may have or has COVID-19?
- Is your camper experiencing any symptoms, including coughing and/or shortness of breath?
- Following the screening questions, a temperature check with a non-touch forehead scanner will be conducted.
Travel in states by land – Return to program but self-monitor for 14 days
Travel in states by air– Return to program after 72 hours of no COVID-19 Symptoms
Safety is our primary concern, especially in these uncertain times. Following the guidance of the Kent County Health Department, they require that only the children who were exposed to the staff member or child to quarantine for 14 days.
The Kent County Health Department is also responsible to inform all other children and staff who are considered “close contacts” by the CDC guidelines. We want to protect the confidentiality of the staff or child unless there is a reason to inform you of their identity.
As of right now, we fully anticipate offering Day Camp at all participating Branch and School-Based sites. We will continue to monitor the news and advisories concerning this ever-evolving health crisis. Should things change, we will communicate any updates by email, our website (grymca.org) and Facebook so that you have the timeliest information and can plan accordingly.
In the event that it becomes necessary for us to cancel your Branch and School-Based Day Camp sessions, your camp payments will automatically be refunded.
We want you to be able to register for branch or school-based day camp with confidence, so we have adjusted our cancellation policy for the branch and school-based day camp programs. If you register now for summer branch or school-based day camp and later decide you need to cancel your session(s), you will have ten days prior to the week scheduled to cancel and can receive a credit or refund.
Here are your cancellation options:
- Get a Refund: Receive a refund of all deposits & payments with any ten-day notice of cancellation.
- Get a Credit: Apply the funds you have paid to a future camp experience or program. We will hold the session/program credit of your choice through September 1, 2021.
- Give a Gift: Donate funds already paid or a portion of funds paid to partner with us to tackle our community's most critical needs. We will be happy to provide a tax receipt for your thoughtful and generous gift.
We also understand that some of you may have decided that you no longer want to remain enrolled in camp, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to remove your registration.
We have added something new! In addition to the 5-day a week option, the Y is now offering a 3-day option at all branch and school site locations. Branch locations (David D. Hunting YMCA, SpartanNash YMCA, Mary Free Bed YMCA and Wolverine Worldwide Family YMCA) will be offering a 3-day option for $135/members and $150/non-members.
We want to continue to provide you with fun and educational activities you can do at home while school is out. We've created a Continued Learning Curriculum that you can do at home including Social Emotional, Creative Expression, Free-time Activities, Literacy, Health & Wellness, Daily Schedules, and STEM Activities. Please visit our family learning hub to find out more. You will also find many other engaging activities and ideas to keep active and engaged.
YMCA CAMP STAFF
The YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids is confident that our staff team is the very best. Combined with a fun-loving spirit and well trained skill set, our staff team looks forward to making your child’s camp experience magnificent. Our staff members are more than just camp counselors. They are role models. They exemplify the core values of caring, honesty, respect, responsibility, and inclusion. Staff members are carefully screened, well trained and fully prepared to help each and every camper make priceless memories. Because of our small staff-to-camper ratio, our staff members are able to form close bonds with our campers.
Y SELECTION PROCESS
Camp staff are selected using an extensive selection process. Group interviews are used to determine potential staff members past experience with youth, ability to lead and personality-fit. Individual interviews are conducted to determine critical thinking abilities, supervision, aptitude, and problem solving skills. At the completion of this process, every staff member receives an updated background check and multiple reference checks.
Our program and camp directors are seasoned professionals with decades of experience in camp administration. These directors are always available to assist our counselors and our parents.
STAFF ARE TRAINED IN THE FOLLOWING AREAS:
- Active, Low Active & Transitional Instruction
- Child Protection & Abuse Prevention
- Coordinated Approach to Child Health (CATCH)
- Behavior Management & Bully Prevention
- Field Trip & Off-Site Safety & Procedures
- General Risk Management & Prevention
- Pool Safety
- Character Development
- Age Appropriate Activity
- Customer Service
- Curriculum Development & Design
- CPR/First Aid & AED
- STEAM/STEM Training