TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – School is about to be out for summer, but it may already feel like summer break for kids who’ve been stuck at home since the middle of March.
With summer on the mind, many parents are wondering if YMCA summer camps will be open during the pandemic.
“As of right now, we’re planning the camps will start as planned on June 1,” said Matt Mitchell, the CEO of Tampa Metropolitan YMCA.
Mitchel said parents are relieved to hear their kids will have an option to get out of the house and enjoy some time with their friends at the YMCA’s summer camps. Of course, COVID-19 is top of mind to keep all the kids and staff safe, including not placing kids in big groups.
“Spacing kids out to make sure they are appropriately socially distant from each other, cleaning, lots and lots of cleaning, disinfecting hands, hand washing stations after every activity,” said Mitchell about other new rules in place.
Sick kids will also need to stay home.
More than providing some social fun and interaction for the children, the YMCA camp option may also relieve some household tensions.
“This is a stressful time for a lot of families. If we can take that portion of their family, their children, their most prized possession, and keep them safe so they can focus on everything else they need to focus on right now, I think that’s a big relief for families,” Mitchell said.
If you want to sign up for camp, the information is posted below.
- Registration is open for the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA Summer Camp: www.tampaymca.org/letscamp
- 10 weeks of camp in Hillsborough County & Pasco County – June 1 through Aug. 7
- Ages: All Tampa Y locations offer camp for ages 6 to 15
- Time: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with early and late supervision included (7 a.m. to 6 p.m.) and add-on activities available
- Breakfast and lunch included. The Summer Food Program is open to all kids in the community ages 18 and under, including Y campers. To find out the time frames when free breakfast and lunch are available, contact your local Y.
- 16 locations across Tampa Bay (counting the First Tee’s 4 locations)
Below you’ll find extra precautions the YMCA is taking to help stop the spread of coronavirus.
- Before children and staff are checked in, their temperatures are taken. For the safety and well-being of others in the camp, those running a temperature of 100.4+ degrees cannot attend
- Staggered curb-side check-in
- Low ratio camp groups spread throughout the whole facility. Campers remain in their same small group throughout the week.
- Individual and spaced out activities to practice safe social distancing. Limited sharing of supplies.
- Ample access to hand washing and hand sanitizing stations, especially at check-in, before meals and after restroom use
- Y staff intentionally teach and encourage good hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette and follow a strict sick child/staff policy
- Significant disinfecting of supplies and activity areas throughout the day
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