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Recreation Support Program

Understanding program changes due to COVID-19

On June 9, the Chief Medical Officer of Health announced that summer day camps across the province could reopen with strict health and safety protocols in place. Our traditional summer camp operations made necessary changes to include infection prevention and exposure control measures required by the Ministry of Health and the regional and provincial levels of government.

 

COVID-19 infection prevention and exposure control measures overrides the traditional programming operations, policies and procedures.  Please review the All About Camp document for detailed information about our new guidelines this summer.

 

The Recreation Support Program is designed to assist your child in the participation of camp activities.  All individuals providing support are required to follow the camp operations and requirements outlined in the All About Camp document, with a few additional requirements.

 

Attending camp with external support

Camp groups are restricted to a maximum of ten (10) individuals including support staff.  If your child is bringing their own external support person we must know in advance to ensure there is space in the camp for your support staff.  Contact Recreation Support at: inclusion.recreation@mississauga.ca or call 905-615-3200 ext. 8260 and provide us with the following:

  • Child’s name
  • Location of the camp
  • Dates registered for camp

Personal protective measures

  • Recreation Support Staff will wear personal protective equipment including face protection (masks and face shield, gloves when required)
  • External support staff will be expected to provide and wear their own face masks
  • Physical distancing protocols are to be maintained from other campers and leaders
  • You will be required to answer screening questions
  • We recognise that support staff may not be able to maintain the required physical distancing of 2 m (6 ft) from their camper

Children may need support to attend camp if they:

  • Have a physical, visual, hearing, developmental or intellectual disability
  • Have attention or behaviour difficulties
  • Currently receive support services or special education services at school or from a community agency

Is camp right for your child?

This summer, City of Mississauga day camps are guided by Ministry of Health guidelines that reduce infection and maintain control of the spread of the virus. With the additional procedures in place, camp will not look the same as in previous summers.  Please review these COVID-19 Recreation Support pre-screening requirements to determine if camp is right for your child.

Camp expectations

The City wants to provide an environment that is safe, fun and welcoming. Making sure that everyone in the camp has the same understanding of needs, expectations and awareness is vital to ensuring an enjoyable camp experience.

We expect that everyone participating in camp will:

  • Stay with the group and take part in activities
  • Use acceptable language
  • Follow all sign out procedures and not leave the program space without permission
  • Not harm other campers or staff. Name-calling, hitting, spitting, kicking or any other form of harm is unacceptable.
  • Touching or taking personal property without permission is unacceptable
  • Be independent in toileting and personal care or provide a support staff to assist with personal care.

If your child needs support at camp, please email us at inclusion.recreation@mississauga.ca or call 905-615-3200 ext. 8360

We can discuss support needs, options and the registration process.

Register for recreation support

Complete the Participant Information Request form and email it to inclusion.recreation@mississauga.ca

You must complete the form and pay all fees in order to complete registration. We cannot guarantee support will be provided until registration is complete.

As part of the program, the City pays half of the cost of the facilitator and the family pays for the other half. The family portion of the fee is approximately $350 not including the cost of camp.

If your child needs to take any type of medication while at camp, you must also complete a Parent or Legal Guardian Medication Consent Form.

We will contact you to book a phone interview to gather additional information our staff will need be able to connect with your child for a fun and enjoyable camp experience.

On the first day of camp, your child’s facilitator will be at the sign-in table to greet your child.

About our facilitators

Recreation support facilitators are usually students with limited behaviour management training. Staff are not able to provide the same level of support as educational assistants or behaviour therapists. Facilitators can provide verbal prompts for going to the washroom and changing. They cannot lift or transfer the participant or administer medication.

We’ll try to keep the same facilitator with your child through the week but sometimes facilitators may change, for example if someone gets sick. For campers that register for the full summer or several weeks, a facilitator will spend two to three weeks with a particular child.

Facilitators have a 30 minute break each day. During their break, another staff person will be with your child.

Facilitator training

All facilitators have their current Emergency First Aid, CPR B, and HIGH FIVE® certifications, as well as acceptable criminal reference checks. Facilitators have minimal behaviour management training.

All facilitators complete training which includes sessions on facilitating friendships, encouraging participation in activities and managing emergency situations.

Facilitators learn basic behaviour management, including a review of our hands off policy and redirection techniques. Facilitators do not receive training on how to physically stop or restrain participants. An individual who may require restraint holds or physical interventions requires an external support worker.

A support person can attend recreation programs for free if they’re helping an individual with a disability participate in the program.

A support person may be a family member, friend who is at least 14 years old, or an individual found through an organization and is familiar with the individual’s needs and requirements.

A support person is fully responsible for the care, support and safety of the camp participant during all camp activities. They must stay with the participant at all times. They can encourage independence, socialization and participation in camp activities when appropriate. A support person must follow camp sign in/sign out procedures at all times.

Attending camp as a support person

All support person(s) attending one of our camps must be familiar with  and understand the following information:

Camp staff

The Camp Supervisor or designate will be there to greet you at the start of camp and ask all required screening questions. The team can answer any questions you may have about support expectations or modifications to activities.

Dress code

You must wear clothing that’s comfortable to play in, for example a t-shirt or athletic long-sleeve shirt, athletic shorts or athletic pants, and running shoes. Avoid any items that could be grabbed, pulled, or caught (for example long ear rings, necklaces, flowing clothing).

Be prepared for outside activities (rain or shine) at minimum have sunscreen, a hat and a reusable/non-breakable water bottle.

Cell phones, photos and video

Cell phone use must be minimal and used for immediate work-related matters only. You cannot use your phone to record or take pictures during camp. If a parent is requesting pictures of their child, please have the parent speak directly to the full time camp staff on duty.

Signing in and out

Camp participants must not leave the property without written consent from a parent or guardian provided to the Community Program supervisor or designate. Even with written consent from the participant’s parent/guardian, sign in/sign out procedures must be followed with appropriate camp staff before leaving the property.

Punctuality

A participant who needs support cannot attend camp until their support person arrives. It’s not safe for the participant to be unsupported or unattended at any time, even for a few minutes. Communicate with the family of your participant if you’re running late or going to be away so they can make other arrangements.

Taking breaks

If the participant you’re supporting needs a break, tell the camp counsellor. Due to COVID-19 requirements staying in the program room is required. Ask for assistance in how to address the needs of your camper.

Washroom procedures

You must accompany your camper to the washroom. If you’re leaving the group, always let a camp counsellor know where you’re going and how long you think you’ll be gone.

As an external support person you may not take any other campers to the washroom with you. Other campers in the group must follow camp washroom procedures.

Hand Washing Procedures:

Hand washing procedures must be followed by both the support person and the camper. For correct hand washing/sanitizing procedures please review:

hand washing to prevent spread of COVID-19

using hand sanitizer

Accessible equipment

Equipment is limited this summer.  All toys are cleaned according to COVID-19 requirements.  We understand that some participants use equipment as a comfort to reduce anxiety or over-stimulation.

Return equipment to the appropriate storage container after use. If equipment is broken or no longer safe to use, inform camp supervisory staff.

Due to restrictions, this year we are discouraging participants from bringing items from home unless it is a needed mobility or communication device. This equipment may need to be cleaned prior to entering the facility and should be cleaned after removal from the facility. The City is not responsible for any loss, theft or damage that may occur.

Confidentiality

Treat the camp participant’s personal information with sensitivity and confidentiality. It’s inappropriate to share personal information about the person you support with anyone, including other campers. There are times when you may need to share some information with City staff if there is some kind of risk to the participant’s health and safety.

If you’re concerned about the behaviour of other campers, speak to the the Camp Supervisory Team or on-site recreation staff as soon as possible.

Safety

Any injuries sustained by either the camper or you as the support person must be immediately reported to the applicable supervisor.

Any instances of workplace violence or respectful workplace concerns must be immediately reported to the camp coordinator or full time staff.

In the event of an emergency situation, lock down or evacuation, follow the directions of the full time staff.

Contact us

If you need additional support or other accommodations to participate in a recreation program, please let the instructor or staff know.

If you have any questions about accommodations or accessibility, please call 905-615-3200 ext. 8260 or email us at inclusion.recreation@mississauga.ca.