When Summer Camp is Canceled

May 20, 2020

Guest Blog Contributor, Deborah Porter

Let’s face it, the stay at home orders have been a difficult thing for many of us. Not because we don’t love our families, we do. Not because we don’t want to spend time with them, we do. But because we also like other people and want to spend time in restaurants, malls and places we enjoy, with our friends and families.

And now, the next shoe that is about to drop is the cancellation of hundreds maybe thousands of camps all over the country. Exclusive camps, neighborhood camps, religious camps, you name it. The announcements are dripping in daily.

So what is an overwhelmed, homeschooling, work from home parent supposed to do?

Here are a few suggestions that may help to smooth things over this summer. But don’t delay. The American Camp Association reports that more than 11 million children and adults attend camps every year. Additionally, COVID-19 is not over and will impact much of the Summer and maybe into the Fall depending on where you live or where the camp is located. And there is still a lot to consider when we think about continued social distancing as cities begin to open up. With wide spread testing expected to be available soon (both antibody and virus), this might be a way to determine who should be exposed to whom and when.

  1. With proper testing and medical advice, children may be able to visit grandparents, cousins or other family members during the summer months. Perhaps for a few days or a few weeks.
  2. With proper testing and medical advice, hiring a camp counselor, who is now unemployed, to create a mini camp experience in your own backyard and home for your children. You, of course, would be willing to provide a glowing letter of recommendation for the wonderful experience your kiddos had.
  3. “Virtual” has taken on a whole new meaning lately. Literally anything and everything can now be made virtual. Parties, happy hours, funerals. Why not camp? In fact, some camp organizers are providing all the materials needed for pick up and then just log in for the experience.
  4. Just about every kid in the country experienced some type of interruption to their academic experience this year. With that in mind, “virtual” summer learning is something many families are already considering. For example, college students who are home for the summer can provide tutoring. In addition, your child’s school may offer summer learning opportunities. Finally, hiring a teacher who is interested in summer work to provide your child with a 1 on 1 experience to close the gap. There is always some level of summer learning loss. This summer will not be any different. In fact, some learning loss may have occurred before summer arrived.

Right now, nothing is the same and “normal” will have a different look and feel. So, whichever suggestion seems to fit your family, don’t delay. Get started with Plan B (and maybe C) so that whatever the new normal looks like, you’ve already made some decisions and if the refund from camp lands in your account, your family will continue to march on.

Originally published on Moms Mentoring Circle 

About Guest Contributor, Deborah Porter: 

Deborah Porter was a stay at home mom for over 20 years. Many of those years were spent fighting off isolation, burnout and trying to get it all done, perfectly. And although systems and organization helped, getting back to the core of what mattered is when things began to shift. Deborah believes that developing  systems can help stay at home moms to remain effective and efficient when there’s a lot to accomplish, little time and constant moving parts.  Her own experience with various mom groups over the years has solidified her belief that “we’re better together”.