Summer Camp Health Practices

How We Keep Campers & Staff Healthy

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Health & Safety Practices

Since 1967, Pine Cove has existed to be used by God to transform the lives of people for His purposes and His glory. This purpose is no different in 2020. Thus, in order to prepare for effective ministry this summer, Pine Cove is taking measures, both operationally and medically, to conduct camp safely in response to COVID-19. 

First and foremost, we will rely on expert guidance for COVID-19 provided by state government and health professionals, including the CDC, with the goal of providing a safe and fun environment for campers and staff.  We will be following all guidelines released May 18 by the Texas Governor’s appointed strike-force for overnight youth camp operators. We also understand that every family is being impacted differently by this pandemic and that you as a parent know what is best for your child. In our desire to serve you well, our cancellation policy for summer 2020 has been removed and the decision to send your child to camp in 2020 is yours. 

As parents, we want you to understand the rigorous efforts Pine Cove is taking toward protecting the health of your child. We are prepared for and have the ability to implement the following measures.

Health and Safety Message

Join Misty Pace, one of Pine Cove’s Registered Nurses (and a camper mom!), as she talks through some of the steps we’re taking to ensure the health and safety of our campers and staff.

If you would like to talk with one of our nurses, please let us know which camp your child is attending and email us at nursemanager@pinecove.com.

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Camper & Staff Screening

  • On camper drop-off days, everyone who arrives on camp property, not just campers, will be asked COVID-19 related health screening questions. And, every person in the car will be thermal scanned on arrival. Campers will be thermal scanned every day of camp.
  • All full-time staff and camp nurses will be screened for prior exposure before entering camp.
  • Pine Cove has the ability to test any camper exhibiting symptoms on-site for COVID-19, perform contact tracing, and offers comfortable facilities to quarantine while waiting for parent pick up.
  • We have the ability to perform daily thermal scans and logs.
  • Staff and campers will fill out a health questionnaire before camp to be assessed by our medical teams on their potential for risk while at camp.

Read More

Stopping It Before It Starts

  • Summer staff will have been quarantined at Pine Cove property for a week prior to campers arrival and will be monitored daily for any symptoms of sickness.
  • Parents at youth camp may not be allowed inside any buildings at check-in or closing, including cabins, with the exception of a designated location for restroom use that will be regularly sanitized during arrival and closing celebrations. This is to protect your camper since their cabin (and mattress) will have been sanitized prior to their arrival. If your camper needs special attention at drop off, we will work with you to ensure a great experience.
  • If buildings are open, we will abide by capacity and physical distancing guidelines.
  • Trunks and luggage will be disinfected prior to delivery to cabins.
  • Camper Mail: If sending mail to your camper, please include it inside their trunks this summer. With increased disinfecting practices, we will not be sorting and delivering camper mail each day this year.
  • Partner with your family: We understand that every family is being impacted differently by this pandemic and that you as a parent know what is best for your child. In our desire to serve you well, our cancellation policy for summer 2020 has been removed and the decision is yours whether or not to send your child to camp.
  • Campers will always have the option to opt out of an activity if they are not comfortable.
  • Campers returning from an overnight camp should minimize in-person contact with any person 65 years of age or older, especially those with pre-existing health conditions, for a period of 14 days. This includes maintaining social distancing of at least 6 feet of separation from those individuals, wearing a face covering or mask, and avoiding sharing utensils or other common objects with those individuals.

Stopping It Before It Starts

    • We also have the ability to perform daily thermal scans and logs.

 

    • Parents at youth camp will not be allowed inside any buildings at check-in or closing, including cabins, with the exception of a designated location for restroom use that will be regularly sanitized during arrival and closing celebrations. This is to protect your camper since their cabin (and mattress) will have been sanitized prior to their arrival.

 

    • Trunks and luggage will be disinfected prior to delivery to cabins.

 

    • Camper Mail: If sending mail to your camper, please include it inside their trunks this summer. With increased disinfecting practices, we will not be sorting and delivering camper mail each day this year.

 

    • Pine Cove has the ability to test any camper or staff exhibiting symptoms on-site for COVID-19, perform contact tracing, and offers comfortable facilities to quarantine.

 

    • Partner with your family: We understand that every family is being impacted differently by this pandemic and that you as a parent know what is best for your child. In our desire to serve you well, our cancellation policy for summer 2020 has been removed and the decision is yours whether or not to send your child to camp.

 

  • Campers will always have the option to opt out of an activity if they are not comfortable.
Girl staffer demonstrating the camp face coverings

Health Practices at Camp

Campers and staff will have face coverings as needed. What does this mean? Your camper will receive a cool runners-style neoprene face covering they can easily pull up over their nose and mouth whenever they are indoors if they find themselves in close proximity to others.

  • When outside, face coverings are probably not needed unless in very close sustained contact.
  • All food handlers will wear their face covering while handling food. (A camper who is carrying his own food to their table does not need a covering. A camper carrying his food and someone else’s food would need to wear a covering.)
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Limiting the Spread

Physical Distancing

• Large group, indoor interactions such as closing celebrations, indoor theme nights, and Club will be held in accordance with government guidelines for the number of people who can safely be together in an indoor space. These events may be moved outdoors and coordinated to have smaller groups as well as appropriate social distancing between groups. 

• Campers and staff will have face coverings as needed
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• Mealtimes will be divided into appropriately-sized groups per meal to maintain spacing, and all camp meals will be served individually, not family style.
• Camper bunks will follow the guidelines that are required by Texas youth camping laws.

Preventing contamination

We have added multiple layers of cleaning and disinfecting policies and procedures with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to instill cleanliness standards for campers and staff, as well as thorough sanitization of cabins, camp buildings, restrooms, high-tough surfaces, and more.

Read Our Sanitization Procedures

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Hydrate & Sanitize

Make Sanitizing Accessible - and Fun!

Hand sanitizer is available at every meal table and passed around to each camper as part of a sanitize cheer. We also have hand sanitizer in each building, including cabins, and at our activity class locations. Sanitizing our hands (and staying hydrated!) have always been important parts of our camp culture. Check out this fun video that the Pine Cove Ranch made during Summer 2019 to remind our campers and staff how important it is to be hydrated and sanitized—and to have fun while doing it!

Watch Now

Required Cleanliness Practices

Rigourous Handwashing

Here’s how we get all campers to wash their hands thoroughly and for the recommended twenty seconds.

Take It Seriously

We take handwashing seriously as the number one recommendation from the CDC for infection control.

Part of Our Program

Dining halls have handwashing stations right outside the door and all youth and day campers wash hands before meals.

Make It Fun

Staff are doing cheers, singing songs, and monitoring to make sure all campers wash their hands long enough and thoroughly.

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Summer Staff Health Training

Training

Training our staff and our campers is super important. We train our staff on how to properly sanitize, wash hands, and how to monitor campers to prevent behaviors that spread illness. For our campers we emphasize covering mouths when sneezing or coughing, avoiding unnecessary physical contact, and not sharing bathroom products.

We’re adjusting camp drop-off and pick-up procedures to prioritize your camper’s safety.

Details About Camper Drop-Off

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Camp Medical Facilities

On-Site Medical Care

Every youth camp’s health center has always been staffed with a screened and experienced RN on site 24/7 and clinical services capable of providing labs and x-rays, suturing, splinting, administering oral and IV medications, and monitoring patients who are sick. Our East Texas and Central Texas regions also have an on-site clinic to quickly take care of medical needs beyond the camp health center. In some instances, we will send campers home rather than risk them infecting other campers at camp. At day camps, the church provides a volunteer nurse with similar qualifications.

If a Camper Tests Positive for COVID-19

Licensed Staff

Led by our Chief Medical Director Dr. Scott Lawrence, our talented medical team includes multiple physicians and over 300 nurses during the summer in two states across three camps. Their focus is on making the summer medical experience as safe and smooth as possible. This team is actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation and making adjustments to care as needed. The big picture: skilled staffers are keeping an eye out for any kind of illness that could spread at camp.

If a Camper Tests Positive for COVID-19

If a camper tests positive for COVID-19, the camper’s parent or guardian should pick up, or have arranged to have picked up, the camper within 8 hours. When an individual tests positive for COVID-19, we will notify all parents or guardians of campers in the cohort. The parents or guardians may decide to either pick up their child from the camp or leave the child in the camp and trust the camp to take appropriate safeguards. Pine Cove will keep the cohort containing the individual who tested positive for COVID-19 isolated from other cohorts at the camp for the remainder of the camp session.

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Stay updated on our response to COVID-19.

Read Our Blog
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