Over the last year, Up with People has continuously updated its safety practices in alignment with guidance from local, national, and international health authorities. As we take collective steps toward recovering from the pandemic, we approach summer 2021 with confidence that we can successfully balance providing a great program experience while maintaining heightened health and safety measures.
Our program planning is impacted by a variety of external resources, including:
- The Virginia Governor’s office, which has begun updating guidelines to allow summer programs to run if Virginia is in the appropriate phase.
- The Center for Disease Control, whose guidelines we have been following and will continue to adhere to this summer.
- The World Health Organization, which provides guidelines and updates as they pertain to the international community.
- The American Camp Association, which has created a field guide for best practices within the summer camp industry.
The policies detailed on this page are continuously updated and express what we can share with confidence at this time. With the Governor’s support, the ACA resources available to us, and continued adherence to CDC and WHO guidelines, we feel confident in our ability to offer a safe and exciting program for the 2021 summer season. Please continue to refer back to this page as we expand our policies for summer 2021.
*This information is current as of April 6, 2021.
To be able to run a safe and successful ChangemakerU program this summer, we ask that all participants be fully vaccinated 2 weeks prior to Arrival day (July 11). While we expect all people 16 and older in the U.S. to be eligible for vaccination by this summer (based on official guidance from federal health authorities), we know that this may not be the case in other countries. Exceptions can be made given extenuating circumstances and we will work with individuals one-on-one to ensure that we are offering a safe and inclusive program for all.
As we plan for summer, we know that there will likely be required testing, and we will look to the VA Governor’s office and the ACA for options. Our goal is to have rapid testing on arrival day for all of our participants and staff. Through the next few months, we will be reaching out to testing centers and distributors to find the best option for a non-invasive test for all. With developments in the accuracy and accessibility of rapid testing, we are looking into on-site testing options.
Hand washing and sanitizing will be a focal point on campus this summer. The pandemic has magnified the urgency of maintaining clean hands. With that urgency in mind, we have installed additional sinks and hand sanitizing stations to stop the spread of germs throughout our facilities. The handwashing and sanitizing stations were implemented in response to COVID -19 in the spring of 2020 as daily operations continued on campus.
While an inherent benefit of attending ChangemakerU is spending time in the great outdoors, we also use indoor spaces, like dining halls, classrooms, and dormitories. This summer our housekeeping team will be increasing their cleaning rounds and paying special attention to high touch areas while using CDC-approved products.