Summer 2020: Frequently Asked Questions – Camp Harbor View

Summer 2020: Frequently Asked Questions

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Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we regret to announce that our 8-week summer camp on Long Island in Boston Harbor will not operate in 2020. We’ve assembled this page to provide you with accurate and detailed information on our decisions and plans for the summer of 2020. We’ll continue to update this page as more information becomes available.

Is Camp Harbor View’s summer camp happening in 2020?

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, our 8-week summer camp on Long Island in Boston Harbor will not operate in 2020

Why did you cancel summer camp?

The health and safety of our campers, our staff and our community are our top priority. We feel, based on CDC guidelines for summer camps, there is no manner in which we can adequately ensure the safety of our campers and our staff and offer a quality in-person summer camp experience at this time. We do not make this decision lightly – yet it is a decision we believe is necessary and appropriate given the current circumstances.

What are the health and safety concerns?

Health and safety concerns broadly include the ability to maintain proper distancing measures in route to/from and at camp; limit sharing of all high-touch materials including helmets, bikes, art supplies, sports equipment, etc. without time to clean and disinfect; monitor all individuals for symptoms of a contagious disease; isolate individuals feeling unwell or exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19; implement sufficient sanitization and cleaning practices across all camp facilities; supply all individuals with personal protective equipment and ensure proper wear of such equipment throughout the camp day; among other more individualized concerns.

I’ve heard that other camps might operate this summer. How are you not able to offer a quality in-person camp experience in this climate?

While the Lt. Governor mentioned in a press conference on May 18th that there is the possibility that summer camps will be allowed to reopen in Phase 2 of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan, we do not see a path forward for Camp Harbor View this season. Given necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we feel we wouldn’t be able to provide an experience that resembles summer camp. Camp Harbor View is about shared experiences. Campers eat three meals a day together; play sports, mix art supplies, and choreograph performances together. Put simply, none of these activities would be possible with significant distancing and limited contact measures in place.

Why not operate Camp Harbor View at limited capacity?

We’ve considered various alternate scenarios for our summer 2020 season including limiting capacity in accordance with anticipated state and city gathering limits put forth in re-opening plans. Logistically, there are numerous partner organizations and staff members that are essential to create the Camp Harbor View experience on an island in Boston Harbor. This includes crew on the ferry, chefs in the kitchen, lifeguards at the pool and so many more. The headcount incurred from these positions would leave a very limited number of campers and LITs – not to mention counselors, social workers and nurses. Instead, we are choosing to pivot our approach in a way that allows us to meet the needs of the largest number of youth and families possible at this time.

Have you considered shortening each session or pushing back the start date?

Yes, we’ve considered various alternate scenarios for our summer 2020 season. Unfortunately, given current reports on coronavirus in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and specifically in the City of Boston, we’ve concluded there is no feasible path to opening camp this summer safely.

If guidelines change between now and July 2020, will you reconsider this decision and open camp?

Unfortunately, no – this decision on the cancelation of the 2020 camp season is final. Months of preparation and planning that go into executing our summer programs on Long Island in Boston Harbor. While there will not be the traditional summer of fun on Long Island this year, we are working hard to ensure the spirit, community and support provided by Camp Harbor View is not lost. Our team is working to operationalize various support resources for youth and families this summer.

But all campers are local right?

Yes, we are a local day camp. However, our campers come from neighborhoods across the City of Boston – most of which would not otherwise come in contact on a regular basis – and our staff commutes from throughout the Greater Boston Area to camp each day.

When did you announce this cancelation?

The final decision was made and communicated to our community on May 20, 2020.

Will you be offering any programs this summer?

Yes. Our team is pivoting to provide alternative resources for families in our community this summer including learning and engagement opportunities, resources like groceries and meals and access to mental health support for teens and families. We’ll continue to update our community on programs and plans throughout the summer. For the latest updates, sign up to receive emails here.

What will Camp Harbor View support and services look like this summer?

This summer we’re adapting our approach and launching initiatives in three critical areas to provide direct support for every kid who planned to spend their summer with us – and to their families as well. This summer we will be offering direct basic need support for families, engagement and enrichment opportunities for youth that emphasize physical health and wellness, and increased individual and group counseling services. 

Who will these resources be available to?

Our aim is to make these alternative programs and resources available to all youth who applied to attend camp in 2020 and teens in our Leader in Training program as well as their families. We are no longer accepting applications for our 2020 summer programs at this time.

Where can I learn more about these services for my kids?

Parents of 2020 Summer Camp applicants and parents of 2020 Leaders in Training should review further information on these alternative programs and available resources provided via email. We’ll continue to be in contact with families in our community as more information is available.

When will in-person Camp Harbor View programs resume?

We will follow guidance from state and city officials in regards re-opening qualifications and requirements to resume in-person programs. We’ll continue to update you as more information becomes available.

Are there any alternative programs that I can send my kids to this summer?

We do not have any recommendations at this time. For the most up-to-date information on resources available in the city, please check our COVID-19 resource page.

What if I have a question not answered on this page?

We understand there will be many questions – some of which we have the answers to now and some of which we will know more on in time. If you have a question not answered on this FAQ page, please send us an email and our team will do our best to address your question.

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