It is hard to believe that in only one month Summer will be upon us, leaving parents with that never ending task of finding enriching, exciting, and FUN activities for their children. Luckily, living in the Bay Area offers us an amazing amount of choices, that truthfully can leave us a little overwhelmed deciding which ones are best for our children.
For a majority of families throughout the country summer time means Summer Camp for their children, and thankfully there are countless quality programs to choose from in the Bay Area. But how do parents decide on which camp program is best for their family? I say “family” because it is not just about choosing a program that makes our children happy, it is equally important that we as parents feel our children are engaged, supported, and most importantly SAFE.
While there are hundreds of programs to choose from for you child, not all share the same standards. As parents to a 2-year-old boy and owners of Adventure Day Camp, we feel strongly that your decision on which summer program is the best fit for your family should include thorough research that involves both the parents and children.
A safe and well-run program starts from the top, so find out who owns and operates the camp and spend some time speaking with them about your child and their potential experience at the camp. Take the time to visit the camp, allowing you and your child an opportunity to see the facilities and meet the Directors face to face. Ask important questions like “what qualifications and experience do your staff have”, “what is your camper to staff ratio”, “can you describe a typical day”, “what medical qualifications do your staff have? Are they CPR & First Aid Certified? How close is the nearest hospital?”, and “what is your camp’s general philosophy on discipline?” Ask about the program’s camper return rate. For us, there is no greater comfort when learning about a program then speaking with other parents that have experienced it.
Summer camp offers a wonderful opportunity for children to learn and grow while experiencing unique and exciting activities. If you’ve been to camp, you’re not surprised when you hear about the benefits of summer camp. Experiencing life at camp yourself as a child, you know the profound positive effects that still matter to you as an adult, and you also know that you want the same thing for your own kids. These experiences will have a lasting effect on your child, and the memories and friendships they create will last a lifetime.
Sunshine and Kevin Welch have owned and operated Adventure Day Camp, in Walnut Creek for 13 years. Together they have over 25 years of experience operating summer camps. Please visit adventuredaycamp.com or call (925) 937-6500 with questions or comments. We are located at 975 North San Carlos Drive in Walnut Creek.