COVID-19 Safety Guidelines - Sandy Cove Ministries
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    COVID-19

    Safety Guidelines

    COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for The MARSH Day Camp

    Last Updated: June 20, 2020


    Gov. Larry Hogan has allowed all outdoor youth camps to open as of 5:00 pm, May 29, 2020; all indoor youth camps to open as of 5:00 pm, June 19, 2020. Residential and overnight camp programs have also been allowed to open as of 5:00 pm, June 19, 2020. All camps must continue to follow orders from the State of Maryland and guidelines from the CDC and local authorities.

    The MARSH will need to look a little bit different this year based on these guidelines and recommendations. For reference, here are the State of Maryland’s Directive and Orders:

    While these are subject to change as the State continues to proceed through its phased re-opening and more information becomes available regarding COVID-19, here are some common FAQs based on the current guidelines:


    HOW MANY KIDS WILL BE IN A GROUP?

    State of Maryland: Youth Day Camps can resume outdoor activities with capacity limitations of 15 people or less per group and campers must practice social distancing and other CDC guidelines.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    We will continue to be in small groups as usual. For our very youngest campers, there will be 2 staff with no more than 10 campers. For older camper groups there will be 2 staff with no more than 13 campers.



    WILL THERE BE TEMPERATURE SCREENING FOR CAMPERS AND STAFF?

    State of Maryland: No sick camper or staffer may attend camp. Staff and campers shall have their temperature checked and be screened for COVID-19 symptoms or exposure when they arrive at the facility each day.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    Upon the camper’s arrival each day, a staff member will use a digital thermometer to scan each child’s temperature and ask a few simple screening questions.

    Based on the State of Maryland’s guidelines, children with a fever above 100.2 degrees Fahrenheit from a temporal reading, or two or more other symptoms, will be required to go home. The staff will be screened in the exact same way.



    WHAT HAPPENS IF A CHILD OR STAFF MEMBER DEVELOPS SYMPTOMS DURING THE DAY?

    State of Maryland: If a staff member or a child develops symptoms of COVID-19 during camp, safely isolate the person and place a mask or face covering. Contact the youth camp’s health supervisor and the parent/guardian and arrange for safe transportation to a healthcare facility or home.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    Upon the camper’s arrival each day, a staff member will use a digital thermometer to scan each child’s temperature and ask a few simple screening questions.

    If a child or staff member develops symptoms, they will be isolated immediately, masked if safe for the age and symptoms, and required to go home until they are cleared by a doctor to return.



    CAN OUT-OF-STATE CAMPERS ATTEND CAMP?

    State of Maryland: Out-of-state campers are not permitted.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    Unfortunately, at this time, all campers must come from within the State of Maryland. Please contact the following and let them know the hardship that this creates:

    Maryland Department of Health - Center for Healthy Homes and Community Services
    Linda Rudie, Chief
    Linda.Rudie@maryland.gov

    Michael McNeely, Section Head
    Michael.McNeely@Maryland.gov

    Brian Flynn, Section Head
    Brian.Flynn@maryland.gov.

    Children's Environmental Health and Protection Advisory Council
    Clifford S. Mitchell, MS, MD, MPH
    cliff.mitchell@maryland.gov

    Please also consider contacting your elected representatives and the Maryland governor’s office (there is an online email process).




    WILL CHILDREN BE REQUIRED TO WEAR A MASK?

    State of Maryland: Face coverings should be worn by staff and campers, as follows:
    (a) Staff should wear face coverings when interacting with other staff, parents, and campers, unless it is not safe to do so, especially when social distancing is not possible.
    (b) Campers age 9 and older should wear face coverings indoors if they can be worn safely and consistently.

    Individuals from outside the camp are limited in their interactions with staff and campers, including parents during camper drop off/pick up.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    We play outside all day at The Marsh! By limiting group sizes, screening temperatures at drop-off, increasing sanitization methods and not allowing any mixing of small groups, children and staff will not be wearing masks at any time during a regular camp day. 

    We ask that you please stay in your vehicle for drop off and pick up. Only registered campers and staff will be allowed in Nielsen Lodge. Staff helping with the check in and out process are not small group leaders and will be masked during the process. 

    We ask that all campers ages 9+ and staff have a mask with them at all times.



    WHAT ADDITIONAL PAPERWORK DO I NEED TO BRING WITH ME ON THE FIRST DAY?

    State of Maryland: Individuals with a higher risk for severe illness if they contract COVID-19 shall discuss the risks with their healthcare provider before attending or staffing the youth camp program. (see https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/).

    What this means for The Marsh:

    If your camper is at higher risk for severe illness, The MARSH requires a documentation from the child’s primary care physician

    All parents/guardians of registered campers will be required to complete a COVID-19 assumption of risk prior to the child attending camp. Failure to submit will result in your child being unable to participate.



    WILL YOU STILL BE PROVIDING LUNCH AND SNACKS?

    State of Maryland: Keep each group separate from other groups using physical distance or by using shared areas at different times (like separate mealtimes or separate bathroom times for each group). If different groups share areas (bathroom, lunch tables, craft room), clean high touch surfaces in the shared area between groups and keep a log of the cleaning date, time and individual who does the cleaning. AND All youth camp programs shall: Not use shared items such as serving utensils or condiment containers; Eliminate self-service (buffet-style) food options; and Ensure physical distancing for campers waiting for food service.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    Lunch will be pre-packaged (see 2020 Menu here) and we'll eat at picnic tables in our small groups outside. You are always welcome to send in your own lunch, please just let us know at drop off if you have sent anything in. Snacks will continue to be small pre-packaged items served late afternoon in the small groups.

    We will be requiring that every camper has their own water bottle every day! If you need to purchase one from the Camp Store you can do that online. If we find that your camper doesn’t have one, we will let you know immediately and you can choose to purchase one or bring one in within an hour. As you know, staying hydrated is especially important and drinking directly from water fountains will not be allowed.



    WILL MY CHILD BE ABLE TO SWIM?

    State of Maryland: Outdoor pools can re-open with strict safety guidelines, including 50% capacity restrictions and strict physical distancing and sanitation measures. 

    What this means for The Marsh:

    We will still be swimming every day (weather permitting) but will go to Perkins Pool in our small groups and swim times will be spread out throughout the day. At this time, we are unable to offer The Blob as a Wednesday activity.



    WHAT WILL HAPPEN DURING INCLEMENT WEATHER?

    State of Maryland: Indoor youth camps are permitted to open as of 5:00 pm, June 19, 2020.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    In the event of inclement weather, small groups will go to their rainy day spaces as assigned. Staff will be disinfecting frequently touched surfaces and children will be encouraged to wash and disinfect their hands as much as possible. Small groups have their own distinct building/space during rainy days and The Marsh buildings are rustic with large screen windows and fans; we do not have air-conditioned facilities.



    WHAT ABOUT HAND WASHING AND IMPROVED HYGIENE/SANITATION?

    State of Maryland: All youth camp programs shall implement the following prevention and mitigation strategies to slow and limit COVID-19 exposure and spread:

    • Social distancing
    • Practice recommended regular and routine handwashing practices
    • Cough & sneeze hygiene
    • Practice proper use, removal, and washing of cloth face coverings
    • Provide policies and education on COVID-19 symptoms and response
    • Avoid use of items that are not easily cleaned and disinfected
    • Ensure adequate supplies of tissues, hand soap, alcohol-based hand sanitizer, EPA approved cleaning products for COVID-19 disinfection suited for the facility
    • Effective cleaning and disinfection of surfaces
    • Post signs with COVID-19 prevention and control practices

    What this means for The Marsh:

    We will have increased, routine cleaning and disinfection. Staff will be disinfecting frequently touched surfaces (e.g., door handles, sink handles, etc.) throughout the day and logs will be kept. Groups will have their own supplies that will not be shared with other groups and that will be cleaned and disinfected throughout the day as used. Signs are posted throughout the campus to inform and remind campers and staff about best practices for preventing illness.



    WHAT IF SOMEONE IS DIAGNOSED WITH A CONFIRMED OR PROBABLE CASE OF COVID-19?

    Any staff or child exposed to a person diagnosed with a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19 may not work or attend camp until they have completed self-quarantine following the CDC guidelines. Persons who have recovered from COVID-19, must be cleared for release from isolation by a health care professional.

    What this means for The Marsh:

    The local health department, as well as the parents of children in the group, will be notified immediately, and the group shall quarantine following the CDC guidelines.

    Individuals may not work at or attend until completing self-quarantine and obtaining clearance from the individual’s primary care physician.

    Based on consultation with the local health department, the entire facility may be closed based on level of contact and potential exposure. If recommended, The MARSH will wait 24 hours, then complete extra cleaning/disinfection of all areas of the facility and wait at least 5 days to bring in the next group.

    If The MARSH needs to cancel camp as a result of COVID-19, we will honor our policy of providing a prorated refund for the days in which camp is cancelled.



    While the above questions contain clear guidelines provided by the federal, state and local governments to follow, these questions below are in process and The MARSH staff are continuing to look for creative answers that will continue to allow for health safety and fun. For now, the answers below reflect our current thought process, which is subject to revision as events and details change and as we receive further clarity and/or direction.

    CAN I STILL REQUEST THAT MY CHILD WILL BE IN A GROUP FRIENDS?

    As always, The MARSH will try to accommodate these requests to the best of our ability, but this year will be more challenging to fulfil every request. Once your children are assigned to a group, they will be unable to change due to current guidelines.

    WHAT ABOUT GAGA?

    We won’t be able to have our epic, all-camp crazy play, but we are hoping to have some fun in our small groups in sudden death one-on-one type play.

    CAN WE GO TO THE CAMP STORE?

    At this time, as we adjust to some of the changes needed for wearing masks and social distancing, the Camp Store will be closed. We hope to re-evaluate this as the state moves farther into Phase 2 of the Roadmap to Recovery. Camp shirts and water bottles are available for purchase through your account online.

    REMIND ME AGAIN WHAT I NEED TO BRING…

    Water bottle
    Swim suit
    Towel
    Sunscreen
    Completed COVID-19 Assumption of Risk Form
    Bug spray (if desired)

    Please encourage your camper to leave all personal items home. We have procedures for cleaning and disinfecting the items that we use during the day and personal items may be damaged by disinfecting and discarded if considered unsafe.

    THIS IS A LOT AND I HAVE QUESTIONS!

    Please schedule a phone call with us! Email themarsh@sandycove.org to set a date and time.