Bullying is a serious issue for campers when they are at school or in other social situations outside of camp. Pine Cove is committed to creating a safe, bullying-free environment for campers while they are under our care. As such, we have a comprehensive monitoring and prevention plan in place to identify and prevent bullying. Any form, type, or level of bullying is unacceptable and we take every incident seriously.
Bullying prevention begins with strong monitoring. At our camps, campers are consistently monitored. Campers are in their cabin groups the majority of the day, and any time they are not with their cabin they are spread out in monitored areas.
We address “inappropriate camper behavior” in cabin meetings at the beginning of camp. Counselors talk directly about bullying and invite campers to let them know right away if they feel treated inappropriately or witness other campers being treated inappropriately.
The camp director or program director informs all campers at the beginning of camp about the “Talk Box.” The Talk Box provides an anonymous way for campers to inform the director of anything that might be making them feel uncomfortable, including bullying. The “Talk Box” is checked daily.
Counselors check in with their campers during “hang times” (a one-on-one conversation in a public place) to make sure the camper is doing well. They encourage campers to let them know if they see anything inappropriate happen.
In addition, all counselors are trained to have a parenting mindset and be constantly monitoring their cabin and checking in with each camper in their cabin. They are also trained to quickly stop behavior that could lead to bullying with their cabin at the front end of the week, setting an expectation of zero tolerance for any name calling, inappropriate jokes, or other forms of targeted behavior.
Depending on whether the incident is a first, second, or third offense, the camper who bullied will receive a verbal warning, will have their parents contacted to inform them of the bullying, or will have their parents called and asked to come pick up their camper. In this case, the camper will stay with a leadership summer staff member or a full-time staff member until they are picked up.