It will not be long before schools will be out for the summer and children will inundate the camps all around the city, trying to squeeze every last drop of summer before the dreaded back to school date. With all the healthy vitamin D kids are exposed to on sun-filled days, it may seem like the only ailment we have to worry about are sun burns. Unfortunately, because children spend so much time in close contact with one another, they are still very much vulnerable to catching and spreading colds and flus. Just like a school environment, hands and surfaces are the leading culprits of the spread of germs. In fact, recent studies indicate that children will touch and retouch hard surfaces as many as 300 times in just 30 minutes! When flu viruses, Norovirus, MRSA, and other disease causing bacteria are on a surface, they can survive and remain contagious for up to 72 hours rendering infectious disease the cause of 20% of all illnesses among campers and staff. Considering ways to keep your camp clean and healthy will ensure that everyone is having a great experience at a camp will likely have the children return to or tell others about.
Keeping a summer camp cleaning checklist can really facilitate cleaning procedures and help keep all staff members accountable for ensuring their own campers’ safety. A comprehensive camp checklist should include the following:
- Window sills and ledges
- Entrances, Foyers and Hallways
- Doors and doorframes
- Tables and Chairs
- Empty garbage bins and dumpsters
On top of a checklist, all campers should be taught the importance of proper handwashing and should be brought to the washroom to do so frequently. This will have a significant impact on reducing the spread of germs. Cleaning staff need to ensure that critical touch points are disinfected daily such as faucets, door handles, light switches and toilet flushers. It is also important to sanitize areas, such as tables, chairs and counters where children frequently eat and have their snacks. Additionally, floors should be kept clean, to avoid slips, trips and falls (STF) and that personal hygiene items such as towels or clothing are not being shared between campers.
Using green cleaning solutions bring added benefits to the environment such as improved indoor air quality which will contribute to overall health for everyone in the camp facility. Environmentally preferable cleaning solutions also offer reduced levels of harmful bacteria without risking exposure to toxic solvents and harmful gases.
Taking the proper steps to ensure cleanliness in your camp is a guaranteed way to ensure that everyone has a healthy, happy, active, and fun summer. So this year, make sunscreen the only parents’ worry as you incorporate checklists, helpful tips, and green cleaning solutions into your maintenance schedule to provide campers and staff with a germ-free, safe environment.