Preparedness is what we do! That's right...we're in the preparedness business. From emergency preparedness to general preparedness to teaching preparedness, professionals at ACA Accredited camps have a knack for getting ready and being ready - for anything and everything!
To the campers and families, especially those who are curious about what is happening at camp right now, it should come as no surprise that camps and camp people are now getting ready in various ways. This is a great time of the year to watch your camp count down to Opening Day on social media. There’s an amazing amount of excitement, anticipation and work involved in preparing for the arrival of the most important people at camp: campers!
Here are five major ways camp people are getting ready for your child:
1) They’re transforming the property - even with a skeleton crew. Ice has finally left the lakes in northern New England so dock systems can be installed. Construction and repair jobs are winding down. Tents and yurts are pitched on wooden platforms. Watercraft are pulled out of storage. It's incredible what camps store for the winter - and where and how this happens. (So incredible we'll have to cover that in another post.) If there are two offices for the camp, the HUGE shift from winter office to summer office is either underway or will happen soon! Talk about Spring Cleaning...
2) All those Conference workshop ideas and Expo Hall purchases from the early spring are working their way into camp set-up and pre-camp training. It's really true that camp people are constantly learning; but it's in the summertime when that training and education is put to use. New equipment, supplies, services and ways of doing things have already started to arrive at camp. Some of these will be a surprise for campers, while others will be profiled on camp Facebook pages and Twitter feeds in coming weeks.
3) Camp Directors and other Administrators are putting the finishing touches on staff hiring. There are still some great camp jobs to be had if you or someone you know is interested. A solid selection of regional opportunities can be found on our website's JOBS page and a broader range is listed on the website of the national ACA.
4) They are signing up staff for essential courses in key program areas (like Lifeguarding) that will certify and re-certify them and for other courses that provide important training. Camps hire experienced staff and then provide educational opportunities for them (in courses like Wilderness First Aid and Archery) AND in their own camp policies and procedures. Camp staff often attend Certification Schools and courses before heading to pre-camp training at the camp that hired them. Many camps require one week or more of pre-camp training before Opening Day. This time is used to build the team and to get everyone up to speed on how everything works at camp. From learning about how homesickness is handled to the camp’s approach to camper discipline, there's a lot to cover before the first campers arrive!
5) They are counting the days. Camp professionals and camp staff are counting down the days until the campers arrive. Anticipation is in the air all over New England.