Our Philosophy: We are building off the successes of last summer where we ran modified day camps safely and without incident. As with our approach to everything we do, we are proceeding with thoughtfulness and thoroughness in our Covid-19 protocols.
We are doing our best to incorporate the CDC, State, Local and other guidelines into our programming. However, these guidelines are often changing, sometimes conflicting and occasionally miss the target of real-world application. As such, our Covid procedures follow the spirit of the various guidelines, but at times our procedures may differ, and even improve upon these recommendations.
We are continually refining our practices, placing an emphasis on safety and responsibility, while at the same time recognizing that children, more than ever, need a chance to have fun and be social.
We invite you to explore the sections below to learn more about summer 2021 health and safety guidelines.
Guidelines may evolve from week to week based on guidance. However, we will inform parents and campers of the procedures for their session three weeks prior to arrival. The following are the guidelines for Week 3, June 27 – July 2.
Handwashing/Sanitation: Outdoor handwashing stations are strategically located throughout the camp to ensure frequent and convenient hand sanitation. In addition, many hand sanitizer stations are distributed both inside and outside for camper and staff use. Enhanced and increased cleaning procedures are also in effect throughout the summer.
Ventilation: Cabins will generally use open windows and fans to control the climate. A good night’s sleep is essential for healthy, happy campers, so air conditioning, where available, will be used in extreme heat or humidity to help campers sleep comfortably.
Meals: The hot food line will be located inside the Lodge, but dining seating will be outdoors. Entrance into the food line will be staggered to minimize the number of people inside at one time. All campers and staff will be masked when getting their food. Outdoor hand washing stations will be used by campers and staff prior to entering the food line. Meals will be buffet-style, and each camper and staff will put on single-use gloves at the start of the food line.
In case of rain, all staff and campers will eat in the Lodge but will remain masked whenever they are not seated at the table with their cabin. Cabins will eat at the same time and space as other campers in their same program.
Water Fountains: Only fountains with water bottle filling stations will be on. All hand wash sinks are also potable water. Be sure to send your camper with a refillable water bottle.
Daily Health Screenings: As part of the check-in process on the first day of camp, each camper will get a temperature and wellness check. In addition, every morning, all campers and staff will get a temperature and wellness check by the medical team. (See below in the case of fever or certain symptoms.)
Masks: Campers and staff will wear masks when indoors with others outside of their cabin group. Any camper or staff is welcome to wear a mask when outdoors or with their cabin group if they are more comfortable.
Testing: Since last fall, Covenant Harbor’s year-round staff have been assisting the county health department with community testing and we will use this same expertise to test staff in-house as needed and recommended, using both PCR and rapid tests. Our health staff have the ability to conduct testing for campers under special situations if needed with express prior approval by the camper parent.
Mental Health: We know this has been a difficult year for many campers and families. Our summer staff training process will have an increased focus on mental, emotional, and social health, in anticipation of camper needs. Additionally, our pastor of the week and expanded medical team will be ready to provide support.
Chapel Sessions: Pier 30 sessions will be in the big tent. Only one cohort of Pier 30 will be in session at a time. Because this is an open-air space, masks will not be required.
Kishwauketoe sessions will be inside the Knoll. Counselors and campers will be masked except for staff that is teaching upfront while distanced from campers.
Cohorting: Kishwauketoe will function as its own cohort group. Pier 30 will be divided into two cohorts. Day Camp will also be its own cohort. There will be very limited exposure to other cohorts. Cohorts will attend sessions, meals, activities, and other events together. Note that campers in Pier 30 7th-9th grade may overlap with the other cohort during skills time, but it will be limited and controlled.
Distancing: Reasonable adjustments will be made to distance campers to promote safety. Fortunately, our extensive modifications in other areas mean the camper experience is inherently safer: from staggering use of spaces to game selections, to limiting capacities in spaces, to distancing tables, to moving nearly everything outside, we have an eye for reducing risk. However, there will be times when kids, within their own cohort or cabin, will be in close proximity to each other.
Reduced Capacities: The overall numbers of all overnight programs are lowered. This summer’s overall camper capacity has been reduced to less than 80% of previous years. The capacities in each cabin will be one counselor for up to 7-11 campers depending on age and session. These ratios meet or exceed county, state, and American Camping Association regulations and Covenant Harbor is retaining an excellent overall summer staff to camper ratio of 1:5 or better.
Sick Campers: Campers presenting one or more of the following symptoms will be separated under the care of the medical staff:
1) Fever of 100.6 or higher
2) Persistent cough with a fever of 100.2 or higher
3) Vomiting more than twice
4) Red spots/rash on toes (“COVID toes”)
Parents/guardians will be notified immediately and choose between picking up the camper within 24 hours or signing off on a rapid-test to be administered by the Covenant Harbor medical team. Campers may return to programming if they receive a negative test result, symptoms subside, and they are fever-free for 24 hours.
You will be notified: If an individual in your camper’s cabin or cohort is sent home or has a positive COVID-19 test result, you will receive a notification via email.
Groups Rentals and School Groups
We will work with each group to develop a customized health and safety approach that works for their retreat or school event. Our health and safety guidelines will continue to evolve as new information is released.
We have incorporated multiple strategies which may change depending on the contexts and situations. We have developed these strategies utilizing the guidance given by health and camping professionals and other governing bodies. We ask that our group and school rentals work in concert with us, respecting the space and perspectives of others in this temporary community setting, so all may have the best experience possible.
Here are the baseline underpinnings of our strategies for maintaining the health and safety of all:
Hand Washing & Sanitizing: We are increasing the availability and proximity of handwash stations & hand sanitation opportunities. The basic principle here is “clean as you go” – or prior to and after transitioning to a different location or activity, each person is washing/sanitizing their hands to limit the spread of communicable viruses.
Health Screenings: We are asking that each person monitor their health, documenting and affirming they do not have any symptoms indicative of any illness that can be easily spread to others. All individuals at camp should complete either a written or verbal daily health screening.
Ventilation: The principle at work here is to be in spaces where there is good air circulation/flow, and outside is best when possible. One place you will see this more is where we are encouraging eating outdoors more often.
Masks: Following guidance from outside authorities, we are encouraging mask-wearing where social distancing and cross-group interactions are unavoidable or difficult. The dining room, especially when up and moving about, is one area of focus. Our staff will default to wearing masks when in close proximity to guests and campers. We ask guests to consider doing the same.
Distancing and Capacities: Common sense measures will be taken to distance groups to promote safety. Fortunately, our extensive modifications in other areas mean that the guest experience is inherently safer: from staggering use of spaces to limiting capacities in spaces, to distancing tables, to moving outside, we have an eye for reducing risk.
Schedule: We will work with you to adjust schedules (meals, activities, etc.) to best allow for maintaining the integrity of your experience while minimizing cross-group interaction.
Cleaning and Sanitation: We have increased our vigilance and level of cleaning and sanitation, especially of higher touch and use areas. We are constantly monitoring and considering the best methods, frequency and products that fit the situation and need.
If you are interested in learning more about a possible group or school retreat please fill out an inquiry form or contact our marketing coordinator.
Join our team! Covenant Harbor serves guests and campers year-round! We are seeking individuals with a variety of gifts to suit the array of positions that are currently open. We are also looking for a few summer staff positions! Take a look and read more about each position on our employment webpage.
If you or someone you know is interested in working at Covenant Harbor, you can start an online application here or contact us with any questions.
Covenant Harbor Fund and Covid-19 Impact
This past year was uniquely challenging due to the Covid-19 pandemic with Covenant harbor experiencing more than $3 million revenue loss due to cancellations. While the camp will survive thanks to our generous supporters, our return to normal is expected to be slow. Supporting the Covenant Harbor Fund is a tremendously helpful way to not only restore programs and projects we were forced to defer but helps ensure a long-term future for Covenant Harbor.
To donate or find more information, please see our Covenant Harbor Fund page.