Summer camp is a few weeks of fun for your child. For parents, however, this time can be nerve-wracking. Will they be safe? Who will help them if they get hurt?
Before packing your child off to camp, you should know the program's health polices and protocols. Here are a few factors to consider:
It's important to ask camp staff about what exactly your child will be doing. If your child will be participating in any water sports, you will want to know if there are devices like life jackets available or if counselors have lifeguard certifications.
Another reason to be aware of specific activities is if your child suffers from allergies. Nature walk and exposure to certain plants could trigger a reaction. If necessary, be sure to pack allergy medications or an Epi-pen.
Camps often have their menus planned weeks in advance and most staff members are more than willing to provide you with details. If you see any items that you don't want your child to eat, speak up, especially if the cause is food allergies.
If your child is on a restricted diet due to religious or personal reasons, be sure that the camp has the capability to provide substitutions.
At many camps, prescription medications must be handed over to the facility's doctor or nurse who will distribute them. Camp directors also recommend that parents inform the medical staff about any medication — over the counter, vitamins, etc. — so that these items don't end up in the wrong hands.
Your child's safety also depends on you, so don't forget to pack important items like sunscreen, bug repellent and your child's goggles and Speedo swim caps.