Children’s day camps & youth sports camps

Last updated April 19, 2021.

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Children’s residential camps that choose to operate as day camps must work with the Colorado Department of Human Services and their local public health agency (LPHA) for approval.

Day camps, including mobile and outdoor camps, must operate with restrictions and strong precautionary measures, as specified in the guidance below

IF THERE IS A CONFIRMED OR SUSPECTED CASE OF COVID-19  AMONG CAMPERS OR CAMP STAFF

Camp operators

Prior to camp
  • Establish a plan that includes:

    • Capacity and registration of campers that accommodates required physical distancing (6 feet) indoors and stable groups or cohorts. Group and cohort size should be based on Department of Human Services Office of Early Learning’s licensing capacities and staff to child ratios. Physical distancing and stable group requirements apply to all camp activities, including transportation, eating, and recreational activities.

    • If the indoor space is large enough to allow for distancing (6 feet between each camper and minimum of 36 square feet per camper), more than one stable group could be in an indoor space at the same time as long as there is adequate space between groups and safe egress is not compromised.

    • Established groups of campers must not mix with other groups during any part of the day.

    • The availability of substitute staff if staff or volunteers become ill or are exposed.

    • The establishment of protocols for responding and reporting cases to health care staff, local public health authorities, and CDPHE in accordance with case and outbreak guidance for schools and child care facilities.

  • Ensure space is available to isolate ill staff and campers (cots, bedding, restrooms, and supervision).

  • Provide adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff who supervise and care for ill campers, staff, and volunteers.

  • Ensure the on-call availability of a nurse or health care professional.

  • Ensure access to public restrooms, handwashing, drinkable water sources, and picnic or other eating areas during activities at outdoor locations.

  • Train camp staff on current executive and state and local public health orders in Colorado.

  • Train camp health care staff on prevention, transmission, and care of COVID-19 illness.

  • Prepare for closures following a case or outbreak of COVID-19. 

  • Require masks and physical distancing during transportation to and from the camp in accordance with federal masking requirements for public transportation.

  • Ensure sufficient handwashing locations and supplies are available. Hand sanitizer can be used in lieu of handwashing in remote location where handwashing stations are not available.

  • Ensure adequate cleaning and disinfecting supplies.

  • Provide generous and flexible cancellation policies so that if campers experience symptoms, they can cancel.

While camp is in session
  • Cohorts must remain with their group and not mix with other groups during structured time or free time.

  • Clean all high-touch areas at least daily. (Additional Guidance)

  • If the indoor space is large enough to allow for social distancing (6 feet between each camper and minimum of 36 square feet per camper), more than one stable group could be in an indoor space at the same time as long as there is adequate space between groups and safe egress is not compromised.

  • Stagger drop-off and pickup times to avoid large groups and allow for screening.

  • Require staff and campers with suspected exposures, such as ill household contacts, to be sent home with a recommendation to get tested immediately (Testing for COVID-19) and adhere to requirements for quarantine. (How to Quarantine)

  • Stagger meal times and prohibit self-serve foods, including buffet and family-style meal service.

  • Provide guidance and signs to maintain required physical distancing, respiratory etiquette, and hygiene. 

  • Post relevant information from federal, state, and local health agencies about behaviors that mitigate the spread of disease.

Employees
  • Screen staff and volunteers for symptoms and close-contact exposures upon arrival to ensure they are symptom-free before they are cleared to work. (Additional Guidance). Encourage sick employees to use the CDPHE Symptom Support tool.

  • Send home staff and volunteers with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or other communicable illnesses and recommend testing.

  • Require staff or volunteers sent home to adhere to isolation and exclusion requirements.

  • Establish protocols, including isolation of the symptomatic individuals, for staff and volunteers to alert health care staff of symptoms in themselves or campers.

  • Determine if any staff or volunteers are at a higher risk for COVID-19 and consider whether job duties that don’t involve interaction with others are advisable.

  • Staff and volunteers, to the extent possible, should remain with the same group of campers and maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet whenever possible, including during meals and recreation.

  • Require handwashing upon arrival, before eating, and at regular intervals throughout the day.

  • Require masks or face coverings whenever possible and in accordance with federal, state, and local orders.

Campers
  • Screen campers for symptoms and close-contact exposures at drop off, pick up, to ensure they are symptom-free before they are deemed able to attend.

  • Send home campers with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or other communicable illnesses with a recommendation to get tested immediately (Testing for COVID-19) and adhere to isolation and exclusion requirements. (How to Isolate)

  • Provide frequent communication with all families of enrolled campers related to the occurrences of COVID-19 at the camp, the camp’s responses, and all requests from public health.

  • Educate campers about COVID-19 and the related protocols, and address their fears and questions.

  • Establish protocols for campers to self-report symptoms to staff, volunteers or health care staff.

  • Campers, to the extent possible, should be kept in stable groups with the same staff and counselors and maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet during eating and recreation.

  • Require handwashing upon arrival, before eating, and at regular intervals throughout the day.

  • Require masks or face coverings whenever possible indoors and on transportation in accordance with federal, state, and local orders.