OSKALOOSA — The YMCA Summer Day Camp, which teaches children the core values of honor, respect, and responsibility, offers fun and exciting activities for children to learn, play and enjoy nature.
The activities are held at the new and improved Bruce Sedrel Camp at Lake Keomah. Each week, the kids have the opportunity to take part in fishing, archery, swimming, team-building activities, and arts and crafts.
Youth will also be able to participate in field trips. Each camper will spend time at other facilities like Edmundson Park, the YMCA and the Webster School building.
“We are addressing a nature deficit at the YMCA and here throughout the United States,” said Executive Director Dawn Collins of the Mahaska County YMCA.
Collins said there are a list of rules that have been developed specifically for each camper.
“The girls [counselors], came up with a list of relationship rules to help guide the campers to help them focus on the possible behaviors, self-regulation and being good friends,” Collins said.
She added each rule has had a significant impact on those campers.
“They came up with their own rules and now they are reminding each other that we have to help each other and be honest and supportive,” Collins said.
In addition to the rules for campers, there are also rules that the counselors must follow to avoid accidents.
“First, we must have good training for the camp counselors ... And at the archery range they start every session with a reminder of the safety rules. There is a lifeguard always on duty for canoeing. And the children must always wear life vests,” Collins said.
She also added there has never been any injuries.
“We have not had any problems. But, just in case, we have Emergency Management come out and take a look around the campsite so that if something did happen, they know where to go,” Collins said.