Here’s what you should consider as a parent sending their child to camp for the first time since COVID-19.
“You mean I get to be with my friends and just have fun? ALL DAY?” – Macallister, 5 years old. Covid forever changed everyone’s lives, one way or another. For children, they simply forgot how to have fun. For many children, this will be their first exposure in at least two years, if ever, to the fun camp can provide. Let’s keep them safe, so the fun can continue!
Before Covid, our greatest worries at camp were scrapes, bruises, stitches, broken bones, and the dreaded Coxsackie. All of those concerns remain, but Covid is still lurking and changed all virus ‘rules’, leaving the Flu, RSV, and Strep also still lurking in the Summer.
Some questions run deep in Covid fears. Should we send our children masked? Should we get them vaccinated or boostered before camp? Do the camps need cohorts to prevent Covid spreading? Is Coxsackie or the Flu worse now that kids have been in isolation? At the end of the day, the answer is always do what makes you feel most comfortable knowing that the children are outside, not sitting at tables in each other’s faces, breathing in recycled building air.
Other questions are the general camp fears. What if my kid does not drink enough during the day? What sunscreen is the best to use for my child? How do I prevent bee stings and bug bites? How can I help my child from getting sick or injured? The best answer: normal germ and accident prevention. Normal? Yes, normal. Wash those hands. Pay attention to your surroundings. Shower off the germs. Clean out those wounds. Keep the sniffles, sneezes, and coughs at home. Children will scrape their knees. Children will get Coxsackie. Children will even break bones. At the end of the summer, children will also say it was worth it! Nothing beats color war, ice cream parties, slip and slides, bonfires, friends, and fun!
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