CDC releases updated COVID-19 guidance for summer camps, YMCA South Florida opens camp in June

Posted at 3:58 PM, Apr 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-28 15:58:15-04

Last year, the coronavirus pandemic forced many summer camps to close and families to change their plans. Now, new guidance from the CDC says camps will be able to open for in-person activities, provided they take specific steps to prevent the spread of the virus.

Jennifer Doria is gearing up for the summer.

“He seems to love it so we’re just going to keep it rolling and we wouldn’t want to stop the learning and socialization,” said Jennifer Doria, parent.

Doria will continue to send her three-year-old son to day camp at the YMCA campus in Hollywood. With fun outdoor activities and educational classes, Doria thinks the camp will allow her son to experience what summer is all about.

“He comes home and talks about his friends and teachers. That was really important because he’s still little but that was one of the biggest things. I really wanted him to learn how to share,” she said.

Doria says YMCA offers ways for her son to socialize, get outside and get creative while following COVID protocols.

The CDC released new guidance on Saturday, following many of the same rules issued for schools, including wearing masks, physical distancing and getting eligible staff vaccinated. The guidelines also suggests creating small groups of kids and staff to limit exposure.

“Small groups, mask indoors, when they come to camp they will be with the same kids throughout the week, we do contactless drop-off and pick-up, we do temperature checks and we make sure they’re good to come,” said Karla Creque, associate executive director of YMCA South Florida.

Creque says for kids who may have fallen behind because of distant learning, they launched a new curriculum to help with the COVID learning loss.

“We are very intentional with our camp curriculum to provide STEAM, STEM and literacy to make sure the kids are ready to go back to school in person in the fall,” she said.

“It’s kind of time for him to be exposed to do the ABC’s and get a head start on the learning,” said Doria.

YMCA has several campus located across Broward and Miami-Dade counties, Creque says they’re looking to cater over 1,500 students.

Camps start in June and run through August. For more information about YMCA South Florida, click here.