Resources

Covid-19: Pine Project Updates

May 21, 2020

With the rapid spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, a new reality is upon us, one that continues to change each and every day. At the Pine Project, we’re reimagining our responsibility as an organization and as individuals – how we can help to limit the virus’ spread, continue to connect to nature, and support others through this time of physical distancing and caution. 

We want to thank Pine participants, families, staff and community for your support and understanding as we all navigate this uncertain and difficult time together.  

You can check back here for the latest updates on our programs and policies. If your question hasn’t been answered here, please reach out to our team at info@pineproject.org. 

RED WOLF OVERNIGHT CAMP

Sadly, no. Following the Ontario government’s announcement that overnight camps will not be permitted to operate in Summer 2020, Red Wolf Overnight Camp has been cancelled. 

Please take a moment to hear from Andrew, our Executive Director: Red Wolf 2020 Video

– Updated on May 21, 2020

We’re committed to supporting families through this difficult time wherever possible. We’re offering the following options to summer camp families: 

  1. Receive a full refund.
  2. Make a donation. 

All registered camp families have been sent an email with more information and instructions on how to choose their preferred option. If you did not receive this email or have further questions, please reach out to our team at info@pineproject.org.

– Updated on May 21, 2020

Yes! All families registered in Summer 2020 will receive pre-registration for next summer. As always, siblings will also be eligible for pre-registration. 

– Updated on May 21, 2020

We want to make sure each camper knows they’ll have a spot at Red Wolf next year and can look forward to a similar experience then. Campers will be able to choose to return to this year’s age group/program if they prefer.

– Updated on May 21, 2020

ALL campers will be welcomed back next year, even if they will have otherwise aged out of camp. 

– Updated on May 21, 2020

We’re working hard to find ways of connecting with campers this summer and helping them take a little bit of Red Wolf home. As we all head into a summer unlike any before, we also want to encourage campers to as themselves – “how can I make the best of this summer?” Maybe it’s camping in the backyard, exploring the woods near you, or introducing your family to some of the things you love most about Red Wolf. We hope all campers are able to keep the spirit of Red Wolf alive and get outside!

To help kick things off, we’d love to share these songs from Red Wolf together: 

“We give thanks”

“Lead with Love”

 

– Updated on May 21, 2020

SUMMER DAY CAMPS

As of right now, we are continuing to plan for a great summer at camp. We’re looking forward to a summer filled with laughter, nature mysteries and connection! 

We also want to be as open and transparent with families as possible, acknowledging that we don’t yet know what will happen with our day camps this summer. Recently, the Ontario government announced that day camps may be permitted to operate under strict guidelines if trends continue to improve. We are still awaiting further updates and guidance. We anticipate more information by the first week of June.  

In the meantime, we’re working hard to ensure we’re prepared to run our camps as safely as possible (see below for further details). We’re also preparing options to support families if camp can’t run – crafting and fine-tuning new opportunities to engage families in nature connection, such as providing nature activities, games, songs, stories and more.

-Updated on May 21, 2020

In light of the current and evolving situation with Covid-19, we have modified our cancellation policy for summer camps until the end of summer 2020:

If you need to cancel:

  • A full refund, less a $50 administration fee/camp session/person, will be issued to any cancellation made during the notice period of 14 calendar days** or more prior to the start date of the camp.
  • No refunds will be issued for cancellations made less than 14 days before the camp’s start date.
  • Families adversely impacted by Covid-19 (illness, caring for sick family members) who have to cancel their registration within the 14 day notice period will receive a full refund, less a $50 administration fee/camp session/person.

**The notice period has been revised from 28 calendar days to 14 calendar days.

We recognize that extenuating circumstances exist. For cancellations due to medical illnesses, or for any other compassionate reason, please apply in writing to info@pineproject.org. If the reason is medical- or illness-related please include official documentation.

If we need to cancel:

  • We will advise families a minimum of two weeks prior to the scheduled start date of their summer camp session. 
  • Families will have two options:
    • Receive a full refund.
    • Make a donation: Cancelling summer camp poses a significant challenge to the Pine Project. We earn the majority of our income during the summer, while incurring costs associated with summer all year. Donating a portion or the entirety of your refund will help make sure we still have the staff and resources available to continue facilitating nature connection now and once the crisis ends.

– Updated on May 7, 2020

The health and safety of participants is always our top priority. As an organization that runs programs outdoors with relatively small groups and low student to counsellor ratios, we’re well positioned to operate with a reduced risk to participants. 

We’re working hard to ensure we’re prepared to run our camps as safely as possible. While we expect further guidance from health authorities, we’re already making plans to support a heightened level of health and safety at camp this summer. As an accredited member of the Ontario Camps Association, we will thoroughly review and upgrade our plans to ensure compliance with the OCA and government requirements. Measures include:

  • Enhanced screening for campers and staff including:
    • Prior to camp
    • On arrival
    • Daily monitoring
  • Clear guidance and exclusion policies for staff and campers who show signs and symptoms of Covid-19
  • Maintaining our small group sizes and low camper:staff ratios 
  • Reducing and minimizing gathering sizes at camp 
  • Ensuring adequate supply of cleaning and disinfecting supplies and materials, handwashing stations and hand sanitizer stations
  • Increasing routine cleaning and disinfection of high touch surfaces
  • Enhanced hygiene and sanitation practices for campers and staff
  • Strict no-sharing policies for food and personal items
  • Increased training for staff and volunteers
  • Policies and procedures for cooking and meal times (for overnight camp) 
  • Modification of sleeping arrangements for physical distancing (for overnight camp)

We’ll continue to communicate our new policies and procedures to ensure families are informed of our plans well in advance of attending camp. 

-Updated on May 7, 2020

Yes. At the moment, we are still planning to run summer camp and are looking for qualified Instructors and Volunteers to join our team. Please see our available job openings for more information.  

-Updated on May 7, 2020

ONGOING PROGRAMS - Outdoor School and Wild Deer

Currently, all Pine Project programs, including Outdoor School programs and Wild Deer Adult Skills program are suspended until further notice. As long as schools are closed and health authorities recommend against gathering in groups, the Pine Project will extend our program suspensions in the interest of the health of our community.

The Covid-19 pandemic is placing significant burdens on families, workplaces and communities. We feel it too – the Pine Project has invested in administrative costs, program planning, site licenses, equipment and other expenses that can not be recovered – but we’re committed to supporting our participant families, staff and wider community through this difficult time wherever possible. 

For our Outdoor School and Wild Deer programs that have already begun, our regular cancellation policy applies. We are currently exploring different options for each program, such as a potential make-up day, creative technology solutions, take-home activities and other resources to continue facilitating connections with each other and nature. We will be in touch with more information as soon as we’re able.

SUPPORTING PINE THROUGH TOUGH TIMES

Pine has helped thousands of families connect to nature. We’ve seen people transform through their connection with the natural world around us – and we want it to continue. For that to happen, we need your help.

As a small charitable organization, program closures pose a significant challenge to the Pine Project. If you’re able and willing to support us through this difficult time, please consider donating to our Covid-19 Emergency Fund at https://www.canadahelps.org/en/dn/48325.