FAQ for Staff and Volunteers
What safety precautions are being taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19 at Camp?
- Prevention: Camp has implemented many layers of screening for symptoms, testing, and pre-camp procedures to minimize the risk of acquiring and spreading COVID-19 before and during camp programs.
- Policies, Protocols, and Training: The Painted Turtle has developed a thorough guidebook of COVID-19 specific policies and protocols that are implemented across camp to ensure the safety of all participants. Examples of policies and protocols include stringent cleaning and disinfecting processes, program design guidelines to foster camp connectedness yet reduce risk of spread of COVID-19, among many others. In addition, all TPT staff (including volunteers) are thoroughly trained on these policies and protocols to ensure they are implemented as designed.
- Facility Improvements: The Painted Turtle has invested in many improvements across Camp to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 at camp. These improvements include but are not limited to HEPA air filtration in all camp buildings, touchless hand sanitizer, sinks, and soap dispensers, clear and campy signage with safety reminders, enhanced outdoor areas for programming, eating, or group activities.
- Program Design: The program design and camp experience will be structured to be in compliance with COVID policies. While there will be adaptations such as cabin cohorts, limited capacity at sessions, the addition of outdoor meals, mask wearing indoors and physical distance between cabin cohorts, we are confident the Camp spirit – the joy, laughter, fun, and friendship – will be strong!
- Guidance and Resources: The Painted Turtle continues to follow the guidance of the CDC, California and Los Angeles County Departments of Public Health, TPT’s Medical Advisory Board, and the SeriousFun Children’s Network. In addition, Camp follows the recommendations of Environmental Health and Engineering, Inc, a professional group contracted by both the American Camping Association and SeriousFun Children’s Network to develop operating guidance specifically for camps serving children with serious illnesses. The Painted Turtle monitors updates from these groups on a regular basis and follows guidance of these groups to make decisions regarding camp programming throughout the year.
What are TPT’s COVID Protocols (pre-camp, during camp, and post-camp) for in-person camp programs?
Safety is our priority at The Painted Turtle. Camp has implemented many COVID protocols to ensure the safety of all participants. You may visit our COVID-19 Participant Precautions and Protocols here: https://www.thepaintedturtle.org/post/covid-19-participant-precautions-and-protocols
Will you continue Camp at Home Programs this year?
Yes, The Painted Turtle is pleased to continue the successful Camp at Home (virtual) camp programs this Spring! In an effort to reach ALL campers, we are pleased to offer a Cabin Chat Series and Family Weekend program this Spring. There are many benefits of the Camp at Home Program, including:
- Campers from ALL TPT medical condition groups are invited to join
- A condensed, brief application process
- Ability to join from anywhere in the world
- A Camp in a Box full of camp activities delivered straight to your door
- Joining fellow campers and families for tons of camp fun
When are the Camp at Home Programs this year?
Both the Camp at Home Cabin Chat Series and Family Weekend will be hosted in Spring 2022. For more information on volunteer opportunities for this program please visit The Painted Turtle’s Volunteer page.
Are you hosting a Special Diagnoses Summer Session?
No. While we aren’t able to host a Special Diagnoses Session this summer, we have added an additional family weekend opportunity for the Special Diagnoses community. This Spring we will host a Spina Bifida and Special Diagnoses Spring Overnight Family Retreat and there are plans to host one additional Special Diagnoses Family Weekend in the Fall, dates to be announced mid-summer. It is our hope that through these three programs we can serve as many campers from the Special Diagnoses session as possible.
COVID-19 Vaccination and Booster
Is the COVID-19 vaccination required for participation in camp programs?
Yes, all participants (campers, family members, volunteers, and staff) who are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine are required to be fully vaccinated in order to participate in onsite camp programs. Fully vaccinated means 2 weeks after your second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine.
Is the COVID-19 vaccine booster required for participation in the Spring Overnight Family Retreats?
At this time, the COVID-19 booster is not required for participants during the Spring Overnight Family Retreat programs.
Is the COVID-19 vaccine booster required for volunteers and staff this summer?
Yes, all eligible volunteers and staff are required to receive the COVID-19 vaccine booster in order to participate in the summer camp program if it has been at least 5 months since the last dose in their primary series or at least 2 months after vaccination for anyone who received the Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine.
Staff and Volunteer Eligibility
I live internationally. May I participate in camp programs this summer?
Yes, The Painted Turtle values the experience international staff and volunteers bring to the camp program and welcome international staff and volunteers to participate in camp sessions this summer. All international staff and volunteers must agree to additional requirements including:
- Participants must arrive in the United States, preferably Los Angeles, 7 days before they are required to be at Camp and self-monitor for symptoms during that time. The day of arrival counts as day zero, with the first day being counted the following day. For example, a person arriving on June 1 would start to count their days on June 2, the last day to monitor for symptoms would be June 8 and they are able to go to camp on June 9.
- Test no more than 72 hours prior to arriving to camp. The Painted Turtle will supply this test to each individual. As per the previous example, a person arriving on June 1 would complete their testing on June 6, 7 or 8.
- The Painted Turtle will not cover the additional costs of lodging, meals, or other expenses incurred by the staff member during this additional screening period.
I have a medical condition. Am I eligible to work as summer staff or volunteer?
Yes, we strongly encourage all interested applicants to apply. All applicants are required to complete a number of requirements including a complete application, interview(s), reference checks, background and sexual offender check, along with completing all medical requirements including receiving medical provider clearance to work or volunteer at camp. We acknowledge that the COVID-19 Pandemic brings additional layers of consideration for all camp participants, including those with medical conditions. The Painted Turtle is committed to making reasonable accommodations for all participants. If you have any questions, please contact Christine Cook, TPT’s Human Resources Manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are participants allowed to travel by plane to participate in camp sessions?
Yes, The Painted Turtle welcomes seasonal staff, volunteers, and campers to travel by plane to participate in a camp session. All participants who travel by plane must agree to additional COVID protocols to minimize the risk of contracting COVID before or during your travels. These additional requirements include testing 3 days before travel, testing prior to loading a TPT van or bus to camp, and abiding by safe travel policies (mask wearing, frequent handwashing, etc.). Please do not travel if you have any symptoms of illness, even if your preflight test is negative.
Will Camp provide an airport shuttle for summer staff and volunteer arrivals?
Yes, The Painted Turtle will provide airport shuttles for arriving summer staff and volunteers. Summer staff and volunteers who travel on a Painted Turtle shuttle must have completed a COVID test 3 days before travel, agree to symptom screening, testing before boarding the shuttle and must wear a mask throughout the shuttle ride. Any individual who is not traveling by plane but would like to utilize The Painted Turtle’s airport shuttle to get to camp may do so, however, they must agree to testing prior to boarding the shuttle. Please do not board The Painted Turtle shuttle if you have any symptoms of illness. The Painted Turtle will provide the testing kits before boarding the shuttle.