The summer camps are calling for the help of the governments

Les camps d’été réclament l’aide des gouvernements

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If they don’t get emergency aid from governments, more than 70 percent of camps on private or managed by non-profit organizations may be required to give up their activities this summer.

The managers of holiday camps and day camps are launching a cry of alarm. If they don’t get emergency aid from governments, more than 70 percent of camps on private or managed by non-profit organizations may be required to give up their activities this summer, according to a survey conducted by the Association des camps du Québec (ACQ) from its members. Among them, one in three could close its doors permanently.

The Association has 346 members throughout the province and they organize day camps and summer camps for 300 000 children each year.

However, the pandemic poses a serious threat to their activities. Not only the government of Quebec does he still not allowed in the camps for this summer, but the distance required will result in significant additional expense.

For health reasons, the ratios have had to be revised within groups, which reduces approximately in half the number of children per monitor. Not to mention the many rules of hygiene and distancing that must be respected at all times, which requires reconfiguring the dining room to separate all the children, sanitize frequently the hardware used, and the areas of the game and adapt the activities to avoid any contact between the children.

Several summer camps and day camps have already announced that they were suspending their activities for the summer as they are members or not of the ACQ. This is the case of the summer camp Minogami, and Three-Salmon, as well as day camps of Hustlers and smaller organizations such as The Lion and the mouse, in Montreal.

The ACQ has surveyed its members between 15 and 19 may. Among the 162 respondents, 71 % believe they will close their doors this summer if they don’t get aid for the additional costs they will incur. According to the association, 17 million % deposits should be refunded to the families if the camps were not able to maintain their activities this summer.

The ACQ asks the government of Quebec to create a fund for 26 to $ 33 million for assistance to the camps and allow for the hosting of the campers or, for those who should suspend their activities, to repay the deposits to the parents. According to the survey of the ACQ, 80 % of camps may offer activities this summer if they get government assistance.

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