Dear Valued Members,
Over the past month, we have been closely following every aspect of the coronavirus pandemic, and we have been considering options for operating day and resident camp.
Today, GSCB has made the decision to cancel 2020 day and resident summer camps. There is no easy way to share this news. We are saddened and incredibly disappointed. But given how highly contagious this virus is and the notable uncertainty that will exist for the foreseeable future -- plus factoring in the unique characteristics of summer resident camp where girls eat and sleep in close proximity to one another -- we know it is in everyone’s best interests that Camp Grove Point, Camp Country Center and camp at any GSCB property not operate as usual this summer.
The decision to cancel our 2020 camp programming was heart-wrenching to say the least. It was not a decision we chose to make, rather it was a decision we had to make. Like you, we have an emotional connection to camp, and we researched multiple scenarios, hoping to find some way to continue camp and keep campers safe and healthy. Unfortunately, that was just not possible.
Today and always, our number one priority is keeping our girls safe. Our next greatest responsibility is the safety and well-being of our staff and volunteers. Together, with the GSCB Board of Directors and staff, we have determined that the safest decision is to cancel camp for summer 2020. We know that camp is an incredibly important part of your life -- as it is for us. Our camps allow girls a respite from many of the pressures and worries of normal life, and we know that we all need that now more than ever. It was a tough decision, but it was the right decision.
While there may be a loosening of restrictions on in-person gatherings later this summer, we need to make these plans and decisions about camp with the information we have now; and therefore, we listened to the experts in healthcare, such as the Centers for Disease Control and the Delaware and Maryland Departments of Health. If restrictions are lifted and large gatherings can safely take place, our priority will be to try and reinstate GSCB camp opportunities, if possible. In times like this, we know these decisions will be met with strong opinions and lots of questions. We understand.
We wish we could personally tend to broken hearts and disappointment, and so, we are doing the next best thing, which is to find creative ways to bring the spirit of camp directly to our girls. Although summer camp is not an option this year, we are working diligently on creative ways to engage campers. Many of the decisions for these opportunities can be made later -- unlike the decisions and commitments that we need to make now for our summer camp operations. For instance, potentially inviting campers, camp alumni, former counselors and staff to a cookout, late summer day camps, fall weekends and more! We are kicking off a virtual sing- along, and hope you can join us April 30th.
As we explore alternative events, and in order to best determine what type of event we should run, we ask that your camper complete a short survey by clicking here! And, as we continue to develop plans, we will be in touch, and we hope that you make every effort to participate. We know it will not replace camp, but our goal is to provide a forum for engagement with the outdoors in your home, yard, or neighborhood with some familiar camp faces.
In the meantime, we ask for your patience as we begin issuing refunds. In addition, we offer the opportunity for you to repurpose your deposit, in lieu of a refund, if you desire. If you wish to donate your camp registration dollars to help support our GSCB greatest need fund or future camp scholarships fund, please let us know. Unless we hear otherwise, we will ensure the full refund is credited to your account as swiftly as possible.
Should you have additional concerns, questions or feedback, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This was disappointing news, we know. Thank you for your love of camp and Girl Scouts. Like you, we very much look forward to the time when we can safely gather together again around the campfire and under the stars.
As we have demonstrated for over 108 years, we will navigate the impact and difficulties of COVID-19, as we always have. With courage, confidence, and character. Like Girl Scouts.
Thank you for your patience and understanding.
Yours in Girl Scouting,
Claudia Peña Porretti, J.D., CFRE