Summer Camp Safety Tips
It is not unusual for kids to become restless at home during their summer vacation, which is why summer camps are so popular.
According to the American Camp Association (ACA), some 14 million children and adults attend camp each year. There are summer camps to please all types of campers, some revolve around sports, and other recreational activities like swimming, horseback riding, canoeing, climbing/rappelling, others revolve around developing camping skills.
These days, however, camps that focus on farming, ranching, gardening, and wilderness trips are becoming increasingly popular. These adventure camps offer kids and their families with unique experiences that will create lasting memories; however, all summer camp activities are accompanied by risks that could result in injuries.
To help minimize these risks, the staff of Prestige ER would like to share some valuable safety tips for you and your kids.
Do a Site Inspection
Before you send your kids off to camp on their own, plan to visit the site with the whole family. Being away from home in an unfamiliar place can be traumatic for some children, having a tour of the facilities can help alleviate their fears.
A site inspection should also put you as a parent at ease, knowing that the camp facilities are in excellent condition and getting to know the staff will provide peace of mind.
Get to Know the Staff
As a parent, I know that the biggest concern when sending your child to camp is, who will take care of them?
When you visit the campsite, ask who the counselors, supervisors, and volunteers at the camp are. It is essential to make sure that the selection process for the staff includes:
- Background checks
- Crosscheck against the National Sex Offender Registry
You should also check to make sure that counselors and other staff members handle discipline in a way you are comfortable with.
Prepare Your Kids
Once you have chosen the type of camp your kids will be attending, it is crucial that they are prepared for the kind of experiences they will encounter.
For example, if you are sending your kids to a sports camp, they need to develop their fitness level before they start camp, this way they will be ready to face a more intense level of activity which in turn will serve to prevent injuries.
Schedule a medical checkup before the camp starts; you don’t want to send your child off to summer camp with an undiagnosed health issue.
If you are the parent of a child who has an ongoing health issue, it is recommended that you schedule a meeting with the person who will be responsible for managing and dispensing your child’s medication. You should also provide the camp organizers with your child’s comprehensive medical records as well as emergency contact information and detailed instructions to bring your child to Prestige ER in the event of an emergency.
Teach Your Kids How to Avoid Injuries
Injuries can occur at any time, and during any camp activity, parents should take the time to teach their children how to be safe while enjoying some of the staple camp activities.
- Avoid Burns: Campfires are a lot of fun, but, teach your kids to keep flammable substances away from the flames and to adhere to the safety zones established by the staff.
- Prevent Drownings: Instruct your kids always to wear lifejackets while boating, and never go swimming without adult supervision
- Keep Hydrated: Dehydration is one of the top concerns for any person spending time outdoors, but, more so for children. Camp supervisors should have scheduled water and shade breaks during their outdoor activities, but, parents should teach their kids the signs of dehydration.
- Remind Your Children to be Aware of their Surroundings: Children get lost in their playing, and lots of time don’t notice potential dangers such as obstacles on the ground, or even nearby traffic. Teach them to stay on the sidewalk to look both ways before crossing a street, and to never chase a ball that has wandered onto the road.
- Don’t Mess with the Wildlife: Kids need to understand the potential dangers that can arise from interacting with wildlife. Parents and counselors need to teach children how to respect wild animals to prevent injuries.
Summer camps give children a fantastic opportunity to grow as individuals, make new friends, and create memories that will last a lifetime. At Prestige ER we are steadfast in our efforts to help prevent injuries and make this a safe summer for all.
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