The Double H Ranch is pleased to share that we will be welcoming campers back onsite for a residential 2021 Summer Camp Program at 30% capacity. This decision was guided by our primary Core Value of Safe Fun and was carefully deliberated over with guidance from the Medical Advisory Board, the year-round staff, and the Board of Directors. The following criteria were discussed and reviewed before the decision was made: Community Restrictions, Infection Control Capabilities, Staffing and Supplies, Facilities Capabilities, Testing Capabilities, Vaccine Availability, and Transmission Status.
In addition to reduced camper capacity, numerous modifications are being made to our facility in Lake Luzerne. Improved ventilation systems, new spacious camper cabins, and increased handwashing stations are just a few of the updates that will allow us to safely invite children with compromised immune systems onsite. These large-scale, camp-wide conversions will adhere to all CDC and NYS DOH safety procedures and practices related to COVID-19, and will allow us to ensure the highest quality of care that parents have come to expect at Double H.
Double H Ranch campers are not new to the experience of isolation. Many have often missed out on the traditional joys of childhood due to their diagnoses. Now a year into the COVID-19 Pandemic, we have seen this isolation become a reality for more people than ever before. We hope that the 2021 Summer Camp Program will be a continuation of Double H’s 29 years as a respite from the loneliness and social isolation often associated with living with a serious illness.
Since 1993, over 70,000 children with cancer, neuromuscular disorders, hemophilia, sickle cell anemia and other illnesses have had the opportunity to ride a horse, fly down a zip line, feel the spray of snow on their face, make new friends, and build self-confidence. All our programs are completely Free of Charge to families, thanks to the financial support of the community.
Due to the evolving nature of COVID 19, we are prepared to move to virtual programs if they are deemed the safest experience for those children we serve. We have developed safe metrics to open and will monitor community infection rates, NYS guidelines and CDC recommendations on an ongoing basis.
We are proud of our organization’s ability to create Virtual and Adaptive Programs during the COVID-19 Pandemic and recognize, with careful planning and implementation, it is time to take our first steps towards returning to onsite programs. We are excited to be able to start safely welcoming campers, seasonal staff, and volunteers back to their “Home Away from Home.”