Thurbs and Homesickness in Australia

Skip Walton – 05/26/2020

Hi Steph and Seth, Not sure you have seen this but there is an initiative across all Australian children’s hospitals to eliminate homesickness based on Thurbs’ work and a paper we wrote together for Pediatrics in 2007. Very cool to feel like we have made a difference. The documents are attached. Hope your summer goes well, see you on the 27th. Best,


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Live Camp Updates with the Directors

Register for a session below to learn more about the 2022 season. Get your questions answered.

Virtual Q&A sessions with the Directors prior to the start of the summer.  Please click on the links to attend.

New Camper Orientation (for new families and campers) is currently planned to be in person this year on Sunday June 5, 2022 from 1-4:30.  This event will include tours of camp, meet the staff, time for campers to engage in activity together, and a guardian/parent specific Q&A with the directors.  Registration is required to attend.  REGISTER HERE!

Meet the Chef and Discuss Food Allergies

This session will include a discussion of food allergies at Camp Belknap in 2022. We encourage Guardians and campers to attend. This is for new and returning campers. This session is being offered at two times for convenience of families - you only need to attend one as the same information will be shared.

Live Camp Updates with the Directors

Register for a session below to learn more about the 2021 season. Get your questions answered.

Director Q&A:

  • Information Session for All Session 5 Parents/Guardians on Thursday, August 12 at 830PM - REGISTER

Pre-Arrival Requirements

Camp Belknap continues to monitor the state of COVID-19. Our focus is to ensure that camp operates safely in our residential community setting while still maintaining our mission. These requirements may be updated if community transmission increases.  You will be notified via email if there are any updates prior to your arrival.

  1. We are requiring all campers and staff to be up to date on COVID vaccination.  Click here for our up-to-date vaccination policies.
  2. Last summer (2021) was successful because camper families were careful prior to arrival.  We encourage you to engage in low-risk activities to help keep us all safe.  ie- an indoor concert with 20,000 people unmasked is not a good idea prior to arrival.  We do not currently have any other specific pre-arrival quarantine requirement.
  3. Please refer to the CDC guidelines for national and international travel for any travel expectations. Additionally, if traveling on public transportation, we kindly request that you wear a mask in the vehicle and also at the transportation centers.
  4. If your camper has symptoms in the two weeks prior to camp - Prior to arrival please complete COVID testing if you or anyone in your household is symptomatic 2 weeks prior to camp.  And share with us if there is a positive case in your household.
  5. COVID Testing Prior to camp arrival- Because of the community transmission as high at this time (June 1, 2022) in many of the counties our campers are coming from, we are NOW requiring a pre-arrival test for campers in all sessions (1, 2, 3, 4, and 5).  The pre-arrival test must be completed prior to arrival on the FRIDAY before your session starts using an antigen home test. Click here for information about this test.

         Home tests should be completed on the following dates prior to your session:

         Session 1:  June 24

         Session 2:  July 8

         Session 3:  July 22

         Session 4:  Aug 5

         Session 5: Aug 20 (this is a Saturday because camp starts one day later)

 For other sessions (2, 3, 4, and 5)– We will continue to watch community transmission and communicate 2 weeks prior to each session.  If we are not requiring for your session we still highly recommend that you test your camper the week prior to arrival on camp (this can be done with PCR or rapid antigen).  Last summer we did have to turn some campers away on check in day.   Testing at home in the week prior may be a gentler way to discover the news of a positive case.  If your camper will still be in isolation at the start of camp, we can work closely with your family to determine a different time/session in the summer for your camper to attend.

Any additional pre-arrival requirements will be communicated ahead of time and posted here.

Drop-Off and Pick-Up

We are excited to share with you the final check-in and check-out times for the summer.  As outlined in our communications we will be COVID testing upon arrival which affects how we come into camp.  Check-in will still start up at Clark Field like last summer, with the hopes that testing will be even more streamlined.  In an effort to create a stronger experience for the campers we have decided to have campers ARRIVE based on age.  Please review your time slots below.  We ask that you try to come on the earlier end of your time slot but not to arrive before.   If you have more than one camper coming to Belknap on the same day we need you to arrive at the slot of the youngest camper and you will be able to check all kids in.  Additionally, please note our strict policy that we will not accept any late arrivals past 4pm.

 

Check-in/Drop-off Dates (unchanged):

Session 1 - June 26

Session 2 - July 10

Session 3 - July 24

Session 4 - August 7

Session 5 - August 22

 

Check-in/Drop-off Time Slots for Session 1-4 campers:

Age 8-10: Noon - 1 PM

Age 11: 1:00 - 1:45 PM

Age 12: 1:45 - 2:30 PM

Age 13: 2:30 - 3:00 PM

Age 14: 3:00 - 3:30 PM

Age 15-16: 3:30 - 4:00 PM

 

Check-in/Drop-off Time Slots for Session 5 campers:

Age 8-10 - 1:30 - 2:15 PM

Age 11-12 - 2:15 - 3:00 PM

Check-out/Pick-up Time(s):

Sessions 1-4: 9-11 AM

Session 5: 9-10 AM

Masks

At this point in time, Belknap is not planning to require masks and plans for them to be optional.  However, masks will be part of Belknap’s plan for preventing spread of virus at camp if needed.  We will continue to lean on CDC and state guidance and watch current trends of the spread of the virus.  We are going to need to be flexible and at times even adapt mid-session depending on situation.  Please pack masks.

COVID Testing

Camp Belknap will continue to use COVID testing as a part of our 2022 plan for entry and admittance to camp, diagnostic (symptoms) and ongoing monitoring. We have plans to increase testing and types of testing if community transmission warrants tighter protocols.

Pre-arrival COVID testing – We are now requiring a pre-arrival test for campers in all sessions.  The pre-arrival test must be completed on FRIDAY prior to the check in date for session 1,2,3,& 4 and Saturday for session 5 using an antigen home test.  See the pre-arrival tab for details on this testing details and specific testing dates.   We will continue to watch community transmission and communicate 2 weeks prior to each session whether we are updating or changing pre-arrival testing. 

Arrival day testing -  Arrival day testing is also required and will take place on site.  When you arrive at camp  for check-in all campers will be completing a rapid antigen test.  Test results will need to be negative for entry.

What happens if there is a positive case in my camper’s cabin or they are exposed to COVID?
Camper’s that are up to date on their COVID vaccination do NOT need to quarantine if they are a close contact. However, if the camper is not up to date they will be required to leave camp for quarantine.   If your camper becomes symptomatic at camp, Belknap will test your camper for COVID. See other section if your camper is positive at camp.

Response to Positive Test

Any camper who tests positive will be asked to leave camp. Belknap’s medical advisory group has worked on plans close contacts. This plan may include quarantine, contact tracing, and care and testing of campers/staff. Please see the most up to date information on the vaccination policy and how it relates to close contacts.

Visitors

We are still evaluating visitation for summer 2022.

Belknap Word of Honor

Pre-Arrival Requirements

The following link has mandatory pre-camp requirements. Additional details related to pre-camp symptom monitoring and pre-camp testing will continue to be posted on this page.

Updated Summer 2021 Brochure 5th Session (Updated 8/9/21)

Pre-Camp Requirements SESSION 5 ONLY for Vaccinated Campers (Updated 8/9/21)

Pre-Camp Requirements for Unvaccinated Campers (Updated 5/25/21)

Pre-Arrival SESSION 5 ONLY COVID Testing Requirements (updated 8/9/21)

For those that are attending Family Camp and Women’s retreat please see the communications tab for requirements pre-camp.  We request that all participants for these other events follow low risk COVID behaviors in the two weeks prior to arrival. 

Also please note Family Camp participants – all unvaccinated participants will need to have a PCR COVID test complete 3-5 days prior to arrival. 

Women’s retreat – all participants must be vaccinated for this program.  For both Family and Women’s camp documentation will be required.

Packing for Camp

Click here to view and download the most up-to-date list of items to pack for camp (Updated on February 24th, 2021).

If any changes to the list occur prior to the start of camp, a new list and updates will be posted here.

Please note the following:

  • No Laundry - To minimize handling of camper clothes and equipment, Belknap will NOT be offering laundry for sessions that are 1 or 2 weeks. We will provide laundry for 4-week campers.
  • Mask type requirements are outlined as of the current CDC guidance.
  • Water bottles with strap or carrying device are required. Water fountains will be closed to minimize transmission of COVID. Instead, campers will be asked to carry their water bottles to program periods. Water bottle fill stations are located throughout camp.
  • Medications – Belknap is using PackMyRx to help pre-pack medications for camp. Please click here for information and instructions. Please ensure you complete this process at least 30 days prior to your session. Late fees apply.
  • No care packages. Please send letters only.

Drop-Off and Pick-Up

Belknap is planning coordinated efforts to minimize exposure and risk on these high traffic days. 

In order to reduce the spread of COVID and safely enter and exit campers we have adjusted our drop off and pick-up process as outlined below.

Please note the following:

  • Reminder - Late arrivals will NOT be accepted on to campus because of the testing procedures and COVID protocols. Also please note if the camper needs to depart early from camp for a pre-planned event or unforeseen circumstance, they will be unable to return back to camp no matter what day it is within the session.
  • For 5th Session, all campers (vaccinated and unvaccinated) must bring a printed copy of their negative PCR test on change day.

  • If your camper has had a COVID vaccination, we also want you to bring a copy of the vaccination document (however, this does not exclude them from pre-arrival testing or arrival day testing).

  • The Camp Store will be closed on check-in days. The Camp Store is open online at campbelknap.org/shop

We require anyone outside of their car to wear a mask at all times.

We ask that everyone except for campers stay in their car during check-in and check-out time.

Bathroom facilities will only be available on Clark Field.

Due to onsite COVID testing on drop off day, drop off time will be staggered this summer.  Drop off will be between 10AM and 4PM with families being assigned a specific 1 hr arrival window.  Your time slot is designated by your hometown (not current location) and sometimes also by last name.  Please look for your session below to see your specific arrival times.  Pick up will be on Saturdays and will be between 9AM and 11AM for all five sessions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drop Off process will be the following:

            -Parents/Guardians will be directed to enter camp through camp’s eastern most entrance our laundry facility (just north of chase point rd. on Rt. 109).

            -This will allow us to guide all cars up onto Clark Field where cars will be parked, and campers will be checked in.   Check-in will consist of seeing proof of a negative PCR test within the last 5 days or vaccination card, reviewing any pertinent medical histories with our medical team and receiving division assignment.

            -From Clark Lodge, campers will walk across the field to our main office where they will receive a rapid PCR test. 

            -Campers will return to the car and once confirmation of a negative PCR provided by the test they will be released via car to the division.

            -Once cars arrive at the division, we ask that all parents remain in the car.  The cabin leader will help your son with his trunk. 

            -The cabin leader will provide time to speak to the parents while they are in the car.

Pick Up process

            -Pick Up process will consist of picking your camper up at his cabin and then returning to Clark Field to sign him out and settle up his camper spending.

Family Camp and Women's Retreat

             -Please see communications section and/or visit the events page for more details about arrival and orientation times.

Camp Life During COVID

 

Belknap’s mission remains unchanged.  And much of camp life will remain the same in 2021.  We will continue our Belknap traditions such as choice programming, vespers, woodcraft, candlelight and Adam’s cup.  To enhance safety and still preserve the core principles of Belknap life, we have implemented the following upgrades:

  • All Cabins have permanently installed screen doors and ventilation fans.
  • Our Dining Hall will receive a ~3,000ft2 addition of a tent to allow for more distancing between tables.
  • Replaced all water fountains with water bottle fill stations (don’t forget your water bottle this summer!)
  • Move all camp programming from our closer spaces like the chapel and woodcraft circle to messer field
  • Installed hand sanitizer stations throughout camp.
  • Installed additional hand washing stations throughout camp.
  • Installed a tents at the health center for outdoor triage and potential isolation of COVID positive campers.
  • Rented porta-potties for change days
  • Installed additional safety measures within our kitchen

Masks

Masks for campers and staff will be a part of Belknap’s plan for preventing introduction and spread of virus at Camp. Please note that campers and staff will be unmasked for sleeping, eating, showering, swimming and while participating in activities on the lake in small watercraft.  Campers/staff will be allowed to take masks off with their cabin group (their “Family” for the their time at camp) when that group is not interacting with others.  For information on choosing masks and number needed while at camp, please see CDC guidance and Belknap’s equipment list.  Please note, our masking policy may shift in a division (age group) based on percent of campers vaccinated. (Updated 5/12/21)

Family Camp and Women's Retreat

             -Please see communications section and/or visit the events page for more details about masking during these programs.

COVID Testing

Camp Belknap plans to use COVID testing as a part of our 2021 plan for entry and admittance to camp, diagnostic (symptoms) and ongoing monitoring.  The following outlines our requirements for pre-arrival COVID-19 Testing.

We have updated our requirements as of Aug 6, 2021.  Now all Session 5 campers (vaccinated and unvaccinated) attending Camp Belknap are required to have a Covid-19 PCR-based test conducted 3 to 5 days prior to camp arrival. The results must be complete and campers must arrive with a printed confirmation of a negative Covid-19 PCR-based test.

Reminder: once campers are swabbed for a PCR test, we ask that they interact only with their household family members and engage in low risk behaviors to prevent COVID exposure between the time of testing and arrival at camp.  For details, please refer to pre-camp expectations for VACCINATED or UNVACCINATED campers.

What is a PCR-based test?

A Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)-based test is conducted to determine if a person is infected with SARS-CoV-2.   More specifically, a PCR test looks for genetic material from the COVID virus itself.  By contrast, rapid testing is usually antigen testing, which looks for cellular evidence of the body’s response to the virus, but not the actual virus.  The PCR test is the most accurate and reliable test for COVID-19, the “gold standard.”

If you want more information on different types of testing, you can read this:

https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/coronavirus-disease-2019-testing-basics

Again, Belknap can only accept a PCR test, not an antigen test.  This is a state requirement for camp admission.

Where can I get tested? 

Look on your local state websites or contact your primary care providers.  This link might help: 

https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/community-based-testing-sites/index.html

Many drug stores such as CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid, along with walk-in clinics, are now offering Covid-19 testing.  Just make sure, wherever you go, that it is a PCR test, not a rapid antigen test.

Can I do a rapid test?

Maybe.  Currently, most rapid testing is antigen testing, which the State of NH will not accept for camp admission.  There are some instances of rapid PCR testing, but it is less common.  Bottom line: rapid vs. slow does not matter; PCR vs. antigen does.  Again, we cannot accept an antigen test per the NH guidelines and regulations. If you have further questions, please let us know. 

How will the camp get the results?

You will hand carry a copy of the results with you to camp.  We need a hard copy, not a screen shot or photo of the result.  Your camper will not be able to remain at camp without documentation of a negative PCR test performed 3-5 days before camp, by order of the state of New Hampshire.  Additionally, you may be asked to upload this document to his CampDoc medical record.

What if my child has had COVID?  

If your child has had a Covid-19 infection within 90 days of camp arrival, your child does NOT have to be tested. However, you must upload documentation showing a positive Covid-19 test result to Camp Doc. We also require you to bring a hard copy of the result on arrival day. 

Will campers still be tested on arrival day even if they are vaccinated?  

Yes, all campers vaccinated and unvaccinated will also be tested upon arrival at camp.  If the test is positive, the camper will not be allowed to enter/attend that session.

What if I still have questions about testing?

Call camp or email the Camp Belknap COVID Team at teamc@campbelknap.org

Response to Positive Test

Belknap’s medical advisory group, has a detailed plan for the potential of a symptomatic individual and/or positive test at camp. This plan will include isolation, quarantine, contact tracing, and care of campers/staff.

Any camper who tests positive (vaccinated or unvaccinated) will be asked to leave camp.  All vaccinated campers in close contact with a positive case, as long as they remain symptom free, will be able to remain at camp.  All unvaccinated close contacts to a positive case will be required to leave camp and quarantine at home.

Visitors

Visitors are only permitted until June 6th.  Up until June 6th, please click below for detailed information on visiting camp. When camp is in session, for the safety of our campers and staff, visitors will be strictly limited to vendors and maintenance needs.  If there is an urgent reason to come onto the property between June 7th and August 29th please call camp.

Visit Information

Belknap Word of Honor

Please go to this link to review and agree to the Word of Honor. 

All parents, campers and staff are requested to accept this Word of Honor in an effort to support the safe operations of Camp Belknap.