We all know the great uncertainty that is currently pervasive in our world in reference to the COVID 19 (which we will refer to as the Coronavirus in this resource). This is an important issue for our camps and conference centers due to the number of closings of schools and events across the continent.
One of the strengths of our camps and conference centers is that guests view them as safe spaces. Our dedicated staff work tirelessly to protect these spaces and uphold that reputation.
In light of the Coronavirus, the PCCCA Board feels that a strong policy statement communicated to your constituency is a great way to get ahead of the current wave of uncertainty. If a camp or conference center can create and follow a plan of action for preventing the spread of this infectious virus, they could create an environment that makes our sites one of the safest places for children and youth this summer. The PCCCA Board feels that we need to provide you with a wide variety of suggestions and resources since cancelling summer camp at some of our sites could be a critical blow to those ministries.
We are not handing you a policy for you to adopt. On this page, we hope to share resources and suggestions that will be helpful for your camp or conference center as you consider your response to the Coronavirus. Some of our suggestions may seem extreme and others may already be a part of your everyday operations (especially if your site is ACA accredited). We just ask that you go through this page and consider what might be best for your ministry. We feel that a camp or conference center with a plan to keep their participants safe will be the one that will receive the most registrations (and fewer cancellations).
PCCCA is here for you. We want to be a support and resource for you as you consider the best way forward for your ministry, and as you serve and educate your staff and your guests. Do you have other suggestions? Please share them as we plan to make further updates to this page.
- Create or Update Your Infectious Disease Policy
Some of the items we address below could help with this. If possible, have a medical professional review and endorse your updated policy.
- Contact Your Insurance Company about Coverage
Some insurance carriers cover infectious disease and the loss of business due to either the infection of staff or the forced closure of your facility by governmental bodies. Check with your insurance company and understand what coverages you have and the associated deductibles and limits.
- Consider How Canceling Programs Could Affect your Ministry
How would your site be impacted if programs did not happen this year or if your number of participants was significantly reduced? Make plans for reductions in staffing, loans, fundraising efforts, and the use of reserve funds. The reduction in the number of guest groups should also be considered.
8 Steps for Successful Fundraising During the Coronavirus Crisis
Charitable Fundraising During the Coronavirus Pandemic added 3/17
U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Loans added 3/19
Charity's Future and COVID-19 added 3/23
- Create a Communication Plan
Create several communications to share with various audiences. You may choose to share them proactively or simply be ready with approved statements should guests or constituents inquire. Casey Fuerst of Tic Tac Toe Marketing has created a draft communication plan, so you could use that as a starting point.
Examples of Policies, Communications, and Procedures from Other PCCCA Members updated
- Make Modifications to Your Summer Program
As a part of the plan that you share, it is important to name specific ways that you plan to keep your guests safe during programs (and with retreat groups). Please check out the link below with some options or suggestions.
Possible Program Modifications for PCCCA Sites in Light of the Coronavirus
Virtual Day Camp (shared by UMCRM) added 3/26
- Consider Amending your Cancellation Policy for Program Participants, Rental Groups, etc.
The health and safety of our campers and guests is our first priority. With that said, you may want to loosen your policies related to cancellations related to the Covid-19 outbreak. Perhaps let groups uncomfortable with having their event reschedule for another time within the year without a penalty.
- Consider alternative uses for your camp or conference center
Recovery Centers to Provide Places for the Homeless to Quarantine added 3/26
Emergency Daycare for First Responders added 3/26
Spring Day Camp added 3/26
- Stay Up to Date with the Latest Information
It is important to have the latest information from sources you can trust. Below are some important links (and more will be added when we have them), so please visit them periodically for the latest information.
OTHER RESOURCE PAGES
American Camp Association: Coronavirus - Information for Camps
Association of Camp Nurses: Coronavirus Disease - March 1, 2020
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Government of Canada: Coronavirus Disease - Outbreak Update
Presbyterian Church (USA) Board of Pensions - Coronavirus Resources Page added 3/26
SOURCES FOR WEBINARS
American Camp Association, Illinois Section added 3/17
Find the Unemployment Benefits for Your State added 3/27
U.S. Department of Labor - Coronavirus Resources added 3/27
PC(USA) Board of Pensions - A Letter from Our President Regrading COVID-10 added 3/30
Federal CARES Act for Nonprofits added 3/27
Details of Senate Bill: The Financial Bridge that Churches, Schools & Nonprofits Need added 3/27
CARES Act for Nonprofits - What's in It for Charities added 3/29
Please remember that this is an opportunity to show the professionalism of your organization and your solidarity with those you serve. We hope that these resources and considerations will help your ministry set a plan that you can use to respond to this uncertain situation. If you have questions or have contributions for future updates to this page, please contact Joel Winchip, PCCCA Executive Director.