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Subject: Great Plains United Methodist Camps and the Coronavirus
The core values of the Great Plains United Methodist Camps are:
- Develop Christian Spiritual Leaders
- Provide Intentional Places Apart to Encounter God
- Extend Genuine Christian Hospitality and Community
- Nurture Christian Faith and Discipleship
- Teach Creation Care and Appreciation
- Collaborate with United Methodist Churches and Agencies
- Inspire and Equip Guests to do Love and Justice
We are monitoring the coronavirus situation closely using resources provided by the CDC and American Camping Association. All Great Plains Camps have adapted our cleaning procedures in all departments to maintain the most sanitary environment possible to minimize impact on our guests. We will continue to monitor developments regarding COVID-19 and will update staff and procedures as the situation evolves.
Housekeeping: We will continue to clean to a high standard using EPA-registered disinfectants designed to kill viruses. We are focusing on frequently touched surfaces such as door handles and fixtures. Linens are bagged after each event and taken directly to the laundry room where they are washed in hot water and with disinfectant. Personal doing the laundry are to wear Personnel Protection Equipment (PPE) while handling laundry, wash, and sanitize after doing laundry. The carts that the laundry bags were transported in are then disinfected. In addition to cleaning and disinfecting, we open windows and doors to lodging facilities to increase air circulation in the facility between guests for at least an 8-hour period, to minimize potential exposure to respiratory droplets.
Our commercial kitchen and dining hall have strict sanitation procedures that we follow that are put in place and monitored by our local health department. In addition, we are doing the following:
- Training our staff in proper protective habits to help ensure guest and staff safety
- Communicating current information to staff
- Providing additional hand sanitizer stations in common areas and in the Dining Hall
- Increasing our regular cleaning after each meal to include disinfection of the entry/exit door handles to the Dining Hall and serving areas.
- Providing extra cleaning of tables and chairs after each meal, with extra attention to handles, caddies, and all other potentially hazardous items.
- Deep cleaning bathrooms after each meal with EPA-registered disinfectants
- Staff receive regular information about how to stay healthy and keep their personal and workspaces clean and disinfected. They are reminded regularly to practice good hygiene habits and take extra precautions as necessary. Staff are required to stay home when feeling sick, must be fever free for 48 hours without medication and are to keep their supervisor informed of any health concerns.
- Groups: To supplement our procedures, we encourage groups planning to hold events at any of the Great Plains Camps to:
- Planning to come to camp. (currently the CDC recommendation is for groups gatherings to be limited to 50 in size for the next 8 weeks).
- Screen participants for travel to known COVID-19 outbreak sites in the 14 days prior to their event and encourage them to self-withdraw from attendance and participation at the event. Full refunds will be given for individuals who self-withdraw for this reason.
- Staff will screen participants for symptoms of cold, flu, cough, fever, illness, etc. upon arrival and have them return home without participating.
- Monitor participants for symptoms of cold, flu, cough, fever, illness, etc. after arrival. If a participant develops symptoms of cold, flu, cough, fever, illness, etc. please contact the office immediately, and have the participant return home without further participating. Each Great Plains Camp site has specific protocols to follow if someone becomes ill on site.
- Summer Camps:
- Registration remains open and you can register your camper now to reserve their spot. If changes arise and camp must postpone the week your camper is signed up for, we will work with you to move your camper to another week or refund you camper fee in full.
Sara A. Shaw
Sara A. Shaw
Coordinator of Camping Ministries, Great Plains United Methodist Conference
Summer Camp 2020
Over half our campers met Jesus at camp this past summer.
Register today to encounter Christ at camp in 2020.