SUMMER CAMP PARENT HANDBOOK

WELCOME TO WESTPORT WESTON FAMILY YMCA SUMMER CAMP

Updated 2021
To ensure you and your camper are best prepared for camp, please read our Camp Parent Handbook, where you’ll find information on How to Register, Policies & Procedures, Makeups & Refunds, and more. If you have any questions, please contact the camp for further explanation and information. Together we can make this the best summer ever!

HOW TO REGISTER

We are happy your camper will be joining us this summer. It is important to meet all the steps of the registration process to make sure your camper is ready to go at the start of this summer. All fees must be paid in full prior to the start of camp or the child may not be allowed to attend.

Families can register for camp online through our registration website provided by CampBrain. Registration will begin on January 1, 2022 for current Westport YMCA members and slightly later for non members.

You will be asked to create a log in and a household. Then you will be taken step by step through the registration process. Through CampBrain you will be able to make payments, upload forms and review your chosen sessions of camp. If you registered for camp online in 2019, 2020 or 2021 you will be able to do so through your previously created account.

Families registering for camp with an outside organization or with YMCA financial assistance are asked to contact our camp office directly at: mahackeno@westporty.org

 

REQUIRED FORMS FOR CAMP:

All forms may be found online at https://westporty.org/summercamp/summer-camp-required-forms/

Forms must be submitted by uploading them to the Camp Brain registration portal.

  • Copy of a physical less than 2 years old that includes dates of last physical, results and vaccinations history sent to the Y either on paper or scanned and emailed to mahackeno@westporty.org
  • Medication Authorization and Care Plan forms (for any medications that will need to be administered at camp).

CAMP BRAIN REGISTRATION SITE

Families who are registered for camp are able to access their registration and billing information on our camp registration site, http://westporty.campbrainregistration.com. Parents are able to register their children online, make payments and edit contact information. Please note that camp registration is done online at our CampBrain site and not on the normal YMCA registration portal of Daxko. You will need to create a new account.

 

CAMP REGISTRATION FEE

There is a one-time, non-refundable $60 registration fee per camper for camp Mahackeno, Camp Hafaday and Teen Travel which must be paid at registration.

NEW! Each camper registration includes a camp t-shirt!

 

CAMP DEPOSITS

FOR YMCA CAMP MAHACKENO, YMCA CAMP HAFADAY, AND TEEN TRAVEL

Weekly deposit | Per Week upon registration

Families must place a $50 deposit per week reserved. Camp Families may request a full refund prior to April 1. Half/ partial refunds may be requested prior to May 1. After May 1, No refunds are eligible for refund including registrations submitted after May 1. Exceptions only include documented illness or injury accompanied by a doctor’s note. Other exceptions include family emergencies such as loss of a loved one. Deposits are non transferable.

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PAYMENT & REFUND POLICY

BILLING

Camp deposits are due at the time of registration. Balances must be paid on the following schedule:

  • Sessions running June 22– July 24 are due May 1
  • Sessions running July 27– August 28 are due June 1

Any registrations that come in after the due dates must be paid in full.

REFUNDS

  • Full refunds, minus the registration fee, will be processed for any reason until February 15. After February 15, cancelations are accepted, minus deposits. On and after April 1 though the camp season, there are NO refunds of any payments and fees. Should camp close or operations be suspended, camp families will be refunded in full. Should camp close or operations be suspended during a session, refunds will be provided on a pro-rated basis. NO refunds will be provided for a camper who is sent home or not admitted to camp due to behavior, failed health screening or illness/injury without a doctors note.

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GENERAL POLICIES

  • There is a $25 late fee for any past due account.
  • Failure to remit full payment by the due date may result in an inability to attend camp.
  • Incomplete registration forms will not be processed. All registrations must include a current physical, the parent health form and the pick up authorization form.
  • We cannot assist with arranging play-dates, carpooling, or babysitting. We will not give out the contact information for other campers or parents.
  • The Westport Weston Family YMCA does not provide health or accident insurance. The parent/guardian assumes total liability for all charges incurred for medical treatment or property damage.
  • If excessive behavior/disciplinary problems occur, we reserve the right to terminate placement.
  • Anyone who is going to be picking up your child from camp must be listed on the pick up authorization form. You may add an individual by emailing the camp prior to that day’s pick up.
  • Everyone who is picking up must provide a photo ID each day.
  • The first aider or director reserve the right to send a camper home in case of illness or injury.
  • If your camper is ill and must go home, parents will be contacted by phone. Parents must immediately pick up the child or make arrangements for emergency contact to pick up.
  • If your camper is having a problem at camp, we ask that you inform your camper’s Unit Director of the situation as soon as possible so that we may be more effective in providing a solution.
  • Positive and honest communication between the parents and camp staff is important. If your child has limitations or behavioral challenges, the more we know the more we can make their summer successful. Failure to inform the camp of these situations at the time of registration will affect their participation and experience at camp.

 

 

CAMPERS CODE OF CONDUCT

The Westport Weston Family YMCA promotes character development. Campers and Parents are expected to abide by the Camp Mahackeno rules and policies. Guardian signature on the registration form acknowledges the agreement to follow these policies.

  • Show respect to other campers, staff and property at all times. Swearing, fighting and/or disrespectful behaviors are not permitted.
  • Be accepting of others to join in any activity.
  • Listening to instruction from camp staff.
  • Be a good sport whether you win or lose and stand up for the rights and wellbeing of others.
  • Leave items such as electronics, sports equipment, pets and other things of value at home. The Westport Weston Family YMCA will not be responsible for lost or stolen valuables.
  • Do not bring or use non prescribed drugs, alcohol, tobacco products or weapons to camp. These are strictly forbidden at all times. Violation is cause for immediate dismissal from any Family YMCA program.

 

BEHAVIOR MANAGEMENT POLICY

Staff will work with children to correct behavior problems. This may include talking about the behavior, mediating conflicts between campers, giving time outs or limiting camp activities that the child may participate in. If behavior continues, the punishments may increase to suspension from camp or termination of their time at camp. Camp staff will contact parents to let them know if bad
behavior is progression to a point where suspension may be warranted.

There are some behaviors that may lead to a child being suspended or expelled from camp without notice. These can include behaviors such as hitting, fighting, running away from the group or showing extreme disrespect to other campers, staff, camp property or to themselves. If we do call home to have a child picked up, we do require that it happen as soon as possible. A delayed pick up may result in suspension from the next day.

Camper’s attendance will be terminated if a camper engages in vandalism, theft, or unnecessary roughness, uses obscene or threatening language, or acts in an abusive or intimidating manner to other campers or staff including cyber-bullying. Staff are responsible for enforcing the Camper Code of Conduct. Refunds are not given for suspension or termination.

 

COMMUNICATIONS WITH CAMP

We realize that parents will have lots of questions about camp and we want to do our best to have good communication with you. If you have questions or concerns about camp, please let us know.

Phone 203-226-8981 for Hafaday

Phone (203) 226-2565 for Mahackeno

Email us at mahackeo@westporty.org

We will try to respond to you as soon as the camp day allows. Camp will also be sending out email newsletters, so please be sure camp has your correct email address so you can be included in these emails.

If you send a note into camp, please be sure to include your child’s name and group number, the date of the note and clearly explain what you need so that we can be sure to respond correctly.

 

CAMP STAFF

Many of our camp staff have grown up at camp and are enthusiastic about sharing our traditions. Camp staff are selected because of their experience working with children and the skills and interests they can share with our camp community. Throughout the summer your child may find a staff member that they enjoy a great deal. We are happy that these relationships are built, but we do not allow our staff to babysit for families they meet at camp. Please respect that camp staff are asked not to have private
communications with campers and parents outside of camp. This includes emailing, texting and Facebook.

 

CAMP EVALUATIONS

Each session you will receive a camp evaluation. This tool allows us to see how we are doing. It is a chance for you to tell us what we are doing well and how we can improve. Please take the time to complete these evaluations when they come to you.

 

RELEASE OF CAMPERS

Anyone picking up the child must have their photo ID on them and must be on the pick up authorization form. Please be patient during the pick up process. When everyone works together we will keep the line moving and our campers safe.

 

ARRIVING LATE/LEAVING EARLY

Please make every attempt to have your child to camp on time and to schedule pick up at the normal time. A late arrival or early pick up will likely result in your child not being able to participate in an activity. For example, if you are picking up or dropping off during swimming, your child will likely not get to participate.

Please contact the camp in the morning if you are picking up early. Please request to have your child 15 minutes prior to when you must be leaving camp. This gives us time to collect their things and have them ready for you. Also, please be patient if your child is running behind. Early pick ups can be disruptive to the camp schedule and sometimes we can’t meet the desired time for a variety of reasons. If you are dropping off late, please call the camp and let us know when you plan to arrive. Parents may not walk around camp unaccompanied.

 

LATE PICK UP

There is fee for arriving late to pick up your camper: $25 for each 15-minute increment. Emergency contacts will be called after 15 minutes. Per State licensing regulations, if no one is available for pick up the Westport Police Department will be contacted.

 

HEALTH AND MEDICATION POLCY

Each camper must provide a copy of a current physical that is no more than 2 years old at the time they register. Registrations will not be completed until health forms are submitted. We do accept a copy of the school health form, but also require parents to complete the parent side of the camp physical as well. Children may not attend Camp without this form being submitted.

Minor injuries or illnesses will be treated at camp and may not warrant a phone call home. The Westport Weston Family YMCA reserves the right to temporarily deny any child admittance to the program for reasons of obvious illness, or to request early departure should symptoms becomes apparent during the course of the day. When a child becomes ill during the day, we will allow him/her to rest quietly, away from the other children. If parents are contacted to pick up a child, we ask that they make arrangements immediately. If families cannot be reached or are unable to pick up their child, the listed emergency contacts will be called. Children diagnosed as having a contagious disease must remain at home until all danger of contagion has passed. The Family YMCA will not administer medications (Tylenol, Benadryl or prescription). The parent/guardian must administer all medication.

If your child requires emergency medication (Benadryl, epi pen, inhaler or Auvi-Q), you must provide the camp with a completed Medication Authorization form that is signed by the physician. We require a form for each type of medication coming into camp. All medications must the correct dosage amount and delivery method (pill vs. liquid) listed on the form, may not be expired and must come in the original container with the pharmacy label. No medication will be accepted without the authorization form.

 

SPECIAL MEDICAL/ BEHAVIORAL NEEDS AT CAMP

If your campers has special medical needs it is important that you communicate that to the camp so that everyone is prepared and we can come up with a plan to accommodate that child. Camp staff will try to work with the parents to come up with an appropriate plan.

In extreme cases, the camp may decide that we cannot properly and safely accommodate the child. This decision would be made based on medical needs outside of basic medication administration (diabetes management, ADD/ADHD management, epi-pen or inhaler), behavioral situations that put the child, other campers or staff at risk of injury or other needs that are outside of our ability to safely care for the child while also creating a safe environment for other campers. Please contact the camp director to
discuss any concerns you may have.

 

 

SPECIAL CARES PROGRAM

YMCA Camp Mahackeno offers our Special Cares program to children who require a 1:1 aide for camp. The counselors who serve as a 1:1 aide will assist children in navigating the camp day. Counselors will help with transitions, changing, participating in activities and making their way around the facility. The aides that we provide are typical camp staff and are not trained professionals in the special needs field.

Please contact the Camp Director to talk about whether or not Mahackeno is a good fit for your child.

 

 

EMERGENCY POLICY

In the event of an emergency, the camp staff will decide how to best treat the child or respond to the situation. Our response to the emergency will be the priority for our staff. We will contact parents at the first possible moment as long as it doesn’t interfere with treatment of the child or emergency.

If family cannot be reached, we are authorized by your signature on the health form to secure appropriate medical attention from your child’s physician or our consulting pediatrician. Treatment may also be provided by Westport EMS. Should your child’s condition warrant further action, we will utilize 911; an ambulance will transport your child to the nearest hospital (Norwalk Hospital). In the event of a medical emergency, our staff may call 911 prior to your arrival. That decision will be made by our staff and transporting your child to the hospital will be decided by the staff and paramedics.

 

 

LOST & FOUND

Lost & found is unavoidable at camp. Please be sure to label all items with your child’s first initial and last name so we can try to return things if found. Please do not send items to camp if it would be a problem if they were lost as we cannot guarantee that items will be returned. We suggest working with the younger campers on how to put their belongings in their bags when changing. Lost & Found for Mahackeno is kept in our pool lobby and Hafaday lost and found is in the camp office.

 

 

GOALS THAT MAKE THE MISSION HAPPEN

  • Encourage the development of physical skills through participation in a variety of active programs.
    • Measured through seeing campers progress in swim lessons and the development of other skills.
  • Encourage and teach positive Character Development with a focus on the four core values of the YMCA: Caring, Honesty, Respect and Responsibility.
    • Measured through comments in parent surveys and seeing social development in the campers and their relations with each other.
  • Promote feelings of self-confidence and self-worth through participation in group activities where campers leave camp with a greater respect for others and respect for self.
    • Measured through comments in parent surveys as well as staff recognition of camper improvement of self-confidence.
  • Teach and model an appreciation for the natural beauty of the outdoor world and teach the need to work toward its preservation through programs that develop knowledge of respect for our environment. Campers leave camp with a sense of their role in preserving the environment.
    • Measured through behaviors of campers toward camp and the preservation of camp space.
  • Develop skills such as persistence, determination and good judgment through progressive learning systems such as swimming, archery and canoeing.
    • Measured through comments in parent survey as well as staff recognition of camper improvement.
  • Develop leadership and life skills in each of our campers by providing programs that nurture and explore each camper’s personal growth.
    • Measured through comments in parent survey and staff recognition of camper improvement and growth.

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