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Health & Safety


Camper physical and mental health is important for a successful camp experience. Campers are expected to walk and hike daily between living units and activities; live in tents or cabins with 4-9 other campers; be responsible for personal management tasks (getting dressed, packing daypacks for daily activities, brushing teeth, etc.); and be able to follow a structured schedule, verbal directions and to self-manage occasional frustrations.

Campers are encouraged to come to camp well-rested, hydrated and in good health. While at camp, successful campers adhere to age-appropriate bedtimes, drink plenty of water, and eat enough nutritious foods to maintain their energy and stamina. Please do not send any edible items in care packages as significant amounts of sugar and processed foods inhibit appropriate immune responses and can lead to camper illness and fatigue. All food items received in care packages will be disposed of upon receipt.

In the case of illness or injury, we have modern well-equipped health centers with registered nurses on duty in each camp, and we work closely with physicians in Woodland Park and Colorado Springs. It is a 30-minute drive to Pikes Peak Regional Hospital in Woodland Park. We also have a Physician’s Assistant who lives on the camp property and is able to diagnose and treat common ailments promptly so that campers miss less program time.

Parents will be notified by phone/email if your child requires offsite care for illness or injury.

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Safety of our campers is the number one priority of every member of the Sanborn Western Camps staff. Our camp community strives to be a physically and emotionally safe place for every camper.

We have an exceptionally well trained staff. Every year we screen hundreds of applicants, and then hire approximately 120 of the most qualified, outdoor-skilled, college aged, female and male youth development professionals in the country.

All staff members are required to be certified in CPR and First Aid; our selected trip leaders are also trained in Wilderness First Aid (provided by WMI of NOLS) and attend a comprehensive trip leader meeting that defines our expectations of safety, judgment, and backcountry practices.

Once hired, staffers are supplied with the most up-to-date information on child development, group dynamics, and problem solving skills. Our staff members are required to go through an extensive pre-camp staff training, where they practice skills needed to lead trips on and off the property, plan activities for the summer, and add to their “Working With Kids” toolbox through role-play scenarios and specific sessions on coping with homesickness and developing friendship and community living skills.

When problems arise, staff members are trained to seek immediate assistance from directors, the senior staff, and the health care staff. Based on the nature of the problem, parents are promptly notified, and—in some cases—asked to assist in the resolution of the problem (please refer to the Parent FAQ’s for information on specific situations).