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Safety Training & ACA Accreditation

Safety Training & ACA Accreditation

By Evan Coulson

Preparation for the 2011 Summer Camping Season began early in the spring with multiple staff training and

Ondessonk Training

Camp Ondessonk Staff Training Session

development opportunities, in particular a range of educational sessions directly related to the safety and well being of our summer campers.

The Camp Ondessonk Program Director offers an American Red Cross Wilderness First Aid course in early spring and an American Red Cross Life Guarding course in late spring.  During the last week of May each year, summer staff converge on Camp Ondessonk for a week-long training and orientation that covers a wide range of information pertinent to caring for other people’s children.  Topics range from principles of youth development to emergency procedures.  Additionally, all summer staff receive the Diocese of Belleville Illinois Child Protection Policy Training and are certified in American Red Cross First Aid, CPR, and AED.

Training continues throughout the summer months as Unit Leaders and Activity Heads conduct in-service sessions that put concepts of working with children into practice.

The 2011 Summer Season marked an American Camp Association Standards Visit.  Every three years, ACA Accreditation Standards Visitors arrive at Camp Ondessonk and walk through the entire property evaluating operating procedures, practices, and policies to ensure that Camp Ondessonk is meeting over 300 standards based on the current best practices in the camping industry.

Camp Ondessonk is proud to be an active member of the American Camp Association, providing professional staff who present educational workshops at the Midstates ACA Camping Conference each year as well as engage in visiting other camps as Standards Visitors.  Membership in the ACA provides camps like Ondessonk with many benefits, including:

  • Education of camp owners and directors in the administration of key aspects of camp operation, program quality, and the health and safety of campers and staff
  • Establishes guidelines for needed policies, procedures, and practices
  • Assists the public in selecting camps that meet industry-accepted and government-recognized standards.
  • ACA’s Find-A-Camp Database provides the public with many ways to find the ideal ACA-accredited camp
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