3 Essential Tips to Prevent Bullying at Your Summer Camp


Bullying is an important topic for the well-being of children and teens. Even the first-lady has started an anti-bullying campaign.

But bullying isn't only confined to the schoolyard. This is a problem for camps as well. Ensuring that your camp is free of bullying is essential for children's safety.

Bullying causes both psychological and physical harm, and no parent wants to send their child to a camp that allows bullying. Camp should be a time of fun and positive social development.

Here 3 essential tips that you should take to prevent bullying at your summer camp:

1. Prep Beforehand.

Don't wait until the kids show up for their first day before you address the problem of potential bullying. You should prep beforehand.

Make sure your staff and counselors are aware of bullying and the harm that it causes. Help the adults in the room how to identify potential bullying situations and which campers are at risk of bullying or becoming bullies.

Help counselors understand when bullying might be occurring and how to recognize it. Hold workshops. Make pamphlets.

2. Have Bullying Protocols.

Don't leave it up to counselors to figure out how to handle bullying in the moment. Set clear rules about what should be done with the bully and the bully's victim.

Once a bullying situation has been recognized, make sure there are step-by-step instructions for what your summer camp counselors should do.

If a counselor thinks a bullying situation may be occurring, but they aren't certain, how should they react?  How does a counselor approach children to ask them what's going on?

Counselors and staff must be the ones to intervene. Have protocols because the children won't solve the conflict themselves.

3. Encourage good behavior with children.

At the outset of your camp, make it perfectly clear that bullying will not be tolerated. Stress that camp is for fun and learning, and then clearly state what the potential punishment can be for bullying, including expulsion.

Create an environment where children who witness bullying feel comfortable reporting it to a counselor. It's common for children to know when bullying is happening, even if it goes unnoticed by your staff.

Also, try not to remove the bully victim from the rest of camp for too long. This can further the ostracism or isolation that person feels.

Camp is supposed to be a fun time, and it can be. But if you let bullies ruin your summer camp, you might not be running one for long.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by KidsCamps Admin published on July 30, 2018 11:03 AM.

Common Camp Marketing Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them) was the previous entry in this blog.

How Summer Camps Should Think Differently about Food is the next entry in this blog.

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