BOLD & GOLD, Camp Orkila & Camp Colman Summer 2021 FAQs

Last updated: February 16, 2021, at 10:34 a.m. PT

Originally published: January 25, 2021, at 1:36 p.m. PT

The outbreak of COVID-19 has profoundly impacted our communities, businesses, families, and daily lives. Our hearts go out to those affected—particularly to those personally at-risk or who have lost a loved one. The health and well-being of our participants and staff is paramount, and we take the threat of COVID-19 very seriously. We are continuing to monitor the spread and impact of this virus in the Pacific Northwest, and particularly in the areas we operate.

At the Y, we are asking ourselves to respond the same way we would ask of our participants—with courage, hope, and above all, compassion. Below, please find answers to frequently asked questions about our summer 2021 programs.

Program Questions

1. Will BOLD & GOLD, Camp Colman, and Camp Orkila offer programs this summer?
Yes! We believe that now, more than ever, there is a need for meaningful, fun outdoor experiences. In conjunction with public health officials, and in alignment with Washington State’s public health measures, we are working to determine how best to offer amazing summer experiences for youth and families. The health and safety of our participants, staff, and community is our top priority.

2. What programs will be offered this summer?
We plan to provide youth with an overnight experience at YMCA Camp Orkila and Camp Colman. In addition, at YMCA Camp Orkila we plan to offer day camp programs. BOLD & GOLD will be operating one and two-week frontcountry and backcountry trips. We will adjust our programs and procedures and continue to prioritize the health of our participants, staff, and volunteers. We are working with our State and County Health Departments and the American Camping Association on policies and procedures to mitigate risk surrounding COVID-19. As these are constantly evolving policies and procedures, we will share more as we approach the summer.

3. How will activities be impacted by COVID-19?
We anticipate the implementation of program modifications, extended cleaning time, and enhanced cleaning procedures during and between sessions, reduced capacities, and a significant focus on small group sizes. The health and safety of participants, staff and volunteers are our top priorities.  We will continue to release more information about our operating plans as we get closer to summer. Thank you for your patience! 

4. What will happen if public health restrictions remain in place through the summer?
We are committed to following the recommendations of civil authorities and public health officials. If restrictions remain in place that prevent us from operating, we will cancel programs and notify families. Impacted families will have an opportunity to credit their fee towards another program in 2021, make a donation to the Y’s Community Response Fund, or can request a refund.

Health & Safety Questions

1. How will you address health and safety concerns around COVID-19 for participants, staff and volunteers?
BOLD & GOLD, Camp Colman, and Camp Orkila’s eligibility criteria and health screening processes will be updated as needed to minimize, as far as practical, the risk of transmission of COVID-19 occurring at camp. The requirements for participants will depend on preferred practice at that time, as determined by:

  • Guidance from federal and local health authorities, like the CDC, and state health departments for schools, camps, guided recreation activities and businesses
  • The types of tests, vaccinations and other screening tools considered to be highly reliable and widely available at that time.

2. What steps are you taking to minimize the risk of someone contracting COVID-19?
We continue to develop a comprehensive set of policies and procedures specific to COVID-19. Our leadership team has reviewed and will continue to update necessary protocols to comply with, or exceed, governmental guidelines to reduce risk of exposure. These include but are not limited to, the following:

  • Daily health screenings for all participants and staff.
  • Extra vigilance around cabin, building and bathroom sanitation - including increased deep cleaning in high traffic areas and thorough disinfecting of cabins between sessions.
  • All staff will be reminded to promote regular hand washing and good hygiene practices. Additional hand washing and hand sanitizer stations have been added.
  • Program area, equipment protocols, and sanitization practices have shifted to minimize the risk of transmission of COVID-19.
  • Large group gathering will be adjusted to align with current requirement of local, state, and federal orders.
  • Physical distancing practices follow the recommendations of the state and county and are in place for guests, staff, and volunteers.
  • Guests, staff, and volunteers will follow mask wearing recommendations of the state and county.

3. Who is guiding your health and safety plans?
We are being guided by federal, state, and local health officials and working in regular consultation with our partners at the American Camp Association, Y-USA, and National Parks to ensure that we have effective protocols in place to successfully run our programs.

Additional Resources & Information

During this outbreak, we want to remind everyone that a person’s ethnicity, language, or association with a country or region does not mean they carry the virus. Anyone can transmit or become infected. Let’s continue to support one another and avoid the spread of stigma, discrimination, and fear.

General recommendations from the Washington State Department of Health:

  • Wash your hands often and avoid touching your face.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • If you are sick and wondering what to do, call your healthcare provider before you go to a clinic or emergency room.
  • Show compassion and support for individuals and communities most closely impacted and anyone who might be sick.
  • Learn and be prepared: Visit the WA Department of Health resource page.


Category: Camp