To Assess Camp Safety This Summer, Ask the Right Questions

Summer camp can spark memories that last a lifetime. While traditional camps may still offer campfires, “bug juice,” and a healthy dose of the Great Outdoors, today’s family can choose from over 12,000 camps offering an amazing array of experiences—from coding and cosplay, to specialized athletic camps in dozens of sports.

As parents prepare for their kids’ fun and personal growth this summer, they should be attentive to risks such as bullying, harassment, and other inappropriate behavior that may arise in any setting that brings adults and kids together.

By getting answers to key questions before camp begins, you can proactively assess whether your child’s summer activity provider takes important steps to prioritize safety.

Eight Questions You Can Ask About Camp Safety Measures

The answers can help you evaluate your child’s camp’s preparedness to prevent and address abuse and misconduct. They may be found in policies on the camp website, or ask an administrator.

  • Do staff and volunteers receive training on preventing and responding to abuse and misconduct?
  • How are kids supervised during structured activities and free time?
  • Do you have policies to limit one-on-one contact between adults and kids?
  • Do you have policies related to reporting and responding to abuse and misconduct?
  • Do you require screening and criminal background checks for staff and volunteers?
  • How do you communicate expectations about how campers treat one another?
  • (For overnight camps) Is an adult emergency contact available for my child 24/7?
  • (For overnight camps) What are the sleeping arrangements for campers, counselors, and overnight staff?

The U.S. Center for SafeSport offers numerous courses and over 60 resources to help you prevent, recognize, and respond to abuse and misconduct in and around sport and other active settings. Our free 30-minute Parent’s Guide to Misconduct in Sport course will equip parents with information and tactics to minimize risks of harm to their children.

Visit the U.S. Center for SafeSport website or follow up with your SportsEngine account manager to learn more about SafeSport courses available to you.

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About The U.S. Center for SafeSport

The U.S. Center for SafeSport is an independent nonprofit organization responsible for responding to and preventing emotional, physical, and sexual misconduct and abuse in the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Movement. The Center also serves as an educational resource for sports organizations at all levels, from recreational sports organizations to professional leagues.  Learn more >