PARENT INFORMATION

HOMESICK & HAPPY 

PREPARING FOR CAMP

ACCREDITATION STATUS

YMCA Camp Carson adheres to the very highest in health and safety standards and is proud to be accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA).  Developed exclusively for the camp profession, this nationally recognized program has been formulated to promote safe and professional practices in all aspects of camp operation including site, health and safety, food service, staff and program quality.  YMCA Camp Carson has voluntarily submitted to this independent appraisal done by camping experts and has earned this mark of distinction.

 

BIRTHDAYS AT CAMP

We've got it covered!  A special dessert is prepared for your camper and his/her cabin group.  While we are in the Dining Hall, the camp family will recognize campers with birthdays and sing Happy Birthday to them. During Check In, day families can drop of birthday cards or packages with the office staff.   Packages and mail are delivered at lunch time. 

 

CHRISTIAN EMPHASIS & CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT

It is our desire to positively influence the character of each camper we serve.  We accomplish this by carefully weaving the YMCA core values of Caring, Respect, Honesty, Respect and Faith throughout our programs as well as large and small group discussions.  Living in a cabin with 12 other people for the week and participating with friends at activities gives campers the opportunity to exercise these core values every day.  It is our hope that campers will bring take these life skills with them as they return to their home, school and community relationships.

 

The core values we share are based on Christian principles and the example of Jesus Christ.  We utilize a variety of scripture and other literature to facilitate discussions with our campers. While we are committed to our Christian foundation, we certainly respect and welcome children who practice other faiths.

           

Our Christian emphasis is shared through morning chapel, blessings at meals, taps talks and cabin devotions each evening. We also hold a Body, Mind, Spirit ceremony each week in which we share with our campers the importance of each of these important areas for every individual.  We want all campers to know that God loves them and desires to have a personal relationship with them through Jesus Christ.

 

EARLY CHECK OUT PROCEDURE

The camper experience is designed for the entire week and is intentionally programmed through a progression of relationship building, challenge taking and personal reflection and growth.  When a camper is removed from camp during the week or leaves early, it is detrimental to the overall experience and does not allow campers to reach the full culmination of the experience.

 

However, we understand there are times when early dismissals cannot be avoided.  If you will need to pick your child up during camp or early on closing day, please provide a written email to carsonoffice@ymcacampcarson.org.  It is best if we can receive this email, prior to check in day but you may also bring a hand written note on opening day if a prior email is not possible.  If something comes up after your child is a camp, please call the camp office and follow up with an email. 

 
 

EVALUATIONS - CAMPER and PARENT

We're not perfect!  We truly appreciate your help in participating in our parent evaluations!  On the Tuesday after you DROP OFF your camper, you will receive a 3-4 question snap poll via email.  The Tuesday after you PICK UP your camper, an email survey will arrive.  We sincerely ask that you participate in these surveys so that we are immediately made aware of things we can improve or fix.  Campers will also  participate in a snap poll and written evaluation during their stay at camp.  This feedback keeps us moving from good to GREAT!

 

HOMESICKNESS & PREPARING FOR CAMP

PREPARING FOR CAMP

Preparing for the camp experience is often something that is overlooked or misunderstood.  However, if we plan and discuss the camp experience with our children, it can help create a powerful set of first camp memories. 

We STRONGLY recommend that parents read "The Summer Camp Handbook" by Dr. Chris Thurber.   The Summer Camp Handbook is the premier preparatory resource for all families looking to maximize the quality of the camping experience.  You can also visit his website at www.campspirit.com.

 

Another great book and resource is Homesick and Happy by MIchael G.Thompson Ph.D. learn more at

http://michaelthompson-phd.com/books/homesick-and-happy/

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HOMESICKNESS AT CAMP

 

On occasion, some campers may experience homesickness.  We explain to our campers that everyone at camp experiences some level of homesickness, even our staff.  During the week, campers and staff quickly become a "family" for the week and most homesickness is resolved within a day or two.  If your camper experiences a higher level of homesickness and is having unusual difficulty working through it, we will give you a call to inform you of your camper's progress and seek your advice moving forward.  We can honestly say that out of the 1200+ campers we serve, historically, less than 1 camper per summer is unable to work through this very normal emotion of homesickness.

 

We would also add that you please not tell your child you will come and pick them up if they "don't like it".   If your child is experiencing homesickness on Sunday night, they most often will take you up on your offer.  At that point we will ask you to keep your promise.  This comes at the expense of giving your child the opportunity to work through his/her homesickness and experience the sense of accomplishment in overcoming it.  Again 99.9% of campers do overcome this, we promise.

 

LAUNDRY

We no longer offer laundry service.  Please make sure your campers have enough clothing for their entire one or two week stay.

 

LOST AND FOUND

 

We do everything we can to help your camper keep track of his/her belongings.  To assist us in this effort, please label all of your camper’s belongings.  Even so, despite our best efforts, we are left with quite a number of unclaimed lost and found items each week.

 

During the camp session, Lost and Found items are gathered on the porch of the Dining Hall.  Please talk with your child about checking the Lost and Found each day when he/she attends meals.  We also recommend that parents check the Lost and Found tables set up at the lodge on closing day.

 

We hold Lost and Found items for 2 weeks after which time they are taken to Goodwill.  As stated on our application parent agreement, YMCA Camp Carson is not responsible for articles of clothing or personal belongings damaged or missing in transit, loss or theft.

 

MEALS, SPECIAL DIETS and FOOD ALLERGIES

All meals are served family style and campers eat together with their cabin group.  In keeping with the YMCA's area of focus - Healthy Living, Camp Carson strives to provide plenty of balanced healthy meal options for our campers.  Breakfast always offers a hot entree as well as a cereal, fruit and yogurt bar.  A complete salad bar is also offered at each lunch and dinner meal.  A variety of fresh fruit and milk is available to campers throughout the day.  For those who really need a PBJ, we have Sun Butter and jelly always available too!

                       

Special Diets:  Accommodations can be made for special medical diets such as gluten and other allergies.  Our kitchen personnel will make your camper aware of food offering that contain your camper's allergens.  Additionally, menus for your camper's week can be provided to you prior to camp.  If necessary, you may also bring alternative safe foods for your camper which our kitchen personnel can easily prepare and make available for your camper at meal times.

 

If your child has dietary restrictions or food allergies, please clearly document your camper's needs in the Health History Form on your Camper's Forms Dashboard.

OPEN HOUSE
Join us for a 4 segment camp tour of the cabins and facility led by our camp directors.  Open House is a great opportunity to catch a sneak peak at camp, gather lots of great information as well as the chance to ask lots of questions.

 

DATE:  Sunday, April 28, 2019

TIME:  1:00-4:00 Central Time

RSVP:  We'd love to know you plan to come!  Please call the camp office at 812-385-3597. 

 

NEXT OPEN HOUSE
MAY 1, 1-4 PM (Central Time)      RSVP 812-385-3597

 

PAYMENTS, CANCELLATIONS & REFUNDS

A non-refundable registration fee of $75 per session is required at registration and is applied to the total tuition fee. The remaining balance is due by May 15th. Registrations received after May 15 should include the entire camp fee.  The total registration fee of an applicant on the waiting list is refundable if space does not become available.

 

If YMCA Camp Carson receives WRITTEN NOTIFICATION of cancellation prior to May 15th, you will receive a full refund less your $75 registration fee.  After this date the fees are non-refundable, unless a camper from the wait list can accept the space.

SWIM TEST

To become a white band swimmer, campers must be able to swim 25 yards with their head out of the water and no doggie paddling.  Campers must also tread water for 30 seconds.

Some waterfront activities are limited for campers who are not able to pass the swim test.  Waterfront staff work with campers who do not pass the swim test to help them increase their swimming skills.

We also understand some campers struggle to pass the swim test on Opening Day due to first day jitters.  Campers can take the swim test each day, however, for the safety of campers, we absolutely will not pass a camper until they are able to demonstrate swimming ability per swim test details above.

 
 

WEATHER - SEVERE WEATHER PROCEDURES

Camp carries on through the rain, however, if lightening is present, campers are restricted to covered areas.  In the event of a tornado warning, all campers and staff move to the basement of the Dining Hall for safety.