Thank you for trusting us with your precious children this summer. We take the responsibility of caring for them extremely seriously every year, and this year even more so.
Even as the details of our Covid safety policies evolve, please be aware that our overarching policy remains the same: campers cannot enter camp if they test positive for Covid, nor will they be allowed into camp without a negative Covid test or proof of fully vaccinated status. In addition, any camper who has been directly exposed to COVID in their home pod, school/camp cohort, or another close contact will not be able to enter camp until after the CDC mandated quarantine period. We encourage your family to be as cautious as possible to reduce the chance, even from low-risk activities, of your camper not being able to enter camp on Opening Day.
We continue to work rigorously to create a comprehensive, thoughtful, intentional plan that will keep every child safe while still allowing them to grow and explore and evolve in ways that only happen in community, at camp. As parents as well as camp professionals, we understand the delicate balance of needing to protect children from the affects of the pandemic as well as nurturing their spirits and souls.
Our basic plan has three steps:
- A safe summer camp starts at home. Please see the section called "Pre-camp low-risk activity period and testing" for details, but in summary, each camper will need a recent negative PCR test prior to arrival or present proof of full vaccination to Covid-19. We're also asking each family to significantly reduce risk and exposure prior to arrival for the sake of the entire community.
- Bunk Podding. Upon arrival, unvaccinated campers will get a rapid test for Covid, and their pod for the first 8 days will be the people in their bunk. A camper's "pod" is the group with which they can be unmasked, and from whom they do NOT need to social distance. During this bunk pod time, additional test(s) will occur.
- Quarter Camp Podding. On around day eight of camp, if the most recent tests show negative results, our plan is to break up into what we're calling Quarter Camps - four distinct groups within camp that will each be its own pod, or family, where campers and staff can move freely and do activities without masks. These Quarter Camp Pods will be divided by age, and will in general consist of the four to six bunks of children in the same age group. Each Quarter Camp Pod will also have its own counselors, Tribe Leader(s), specialists, farmers, lifeguard, herbalists, social workers - essentially enough people so it can function as a unit. When campers select a chug (elective) they will mix and match with the 50 or so other campers in their Quarter Camp Pod.
Here are a few other highlights of our plan:
- Eating mostly outdoors under tents
- Running most activities outdoors
- Prior to entering the health center, everyone will be screened, and sometimes treated, outdoors. The Health center will have dedicated Covid staff and spaces.
- All staff at Eden Village will be fully vaccinated for Covid this summer.
As of May 17, our in camp policy prohibiting camper-podded staff from leaving the site remains in effect. Our Medical Advisory team is actively reviewing the underlying data behind the most recent CDC guidance for vaccinated individuals. This policy will not change unless, and until, our medical advisory team makes an evidence-based determination that the policy is no longer medically necessary and vaccinated staff can leave carefully and safely.
- Not having a camp bus or shuttle this year, and staggering camper drop-off times with parent(s) or guardian(s) staying in the car
We believe that combining the following protocols will provide the safest experience for our camp community:
- Wearing a mask AND
- Social distancing AND
- Limiting time indoors AND
- Quarantining before going to camp AND
- Getting tested before going to camp AND
- Testing upon arrival AND
- Screening testing during camp AND
- Creating a bubble AND
- Podding AND
- Hand sanitizing AND
There are many more policies and practices we are employing this summer that we invite you to read about in other sections. Please keep in mind our belief your child will experience the magic, connection and warmth that our camp is known for, and that your children deserve.
Our plan has balance: keeping groups separate enough to protect the community, and giving them plenty of freedom within their group to explore, play, grow and build relationships. Your trust in Eden Village has always felt precious to us, but this year all the more so. Thank you.