Before Staff ArriveHere at Camp Ridgecrest, we want to know that campers are not simply physically safe, but that they actually FEEL safe as well. We have systems in place that prevent physical, mental, social, and emotional abuse. Some of those systems include:
Abuse PreventionRidgecrest Summer Camps has been championing abuse prevention systems for many years. Preventing abuse is more than a background check; it is a culture. We have spent decades developing systems, policies, and procedures to protect our campers and our staff.
Ministry Safe AccreditationRidgecrest Summer Camps partners with Ministry Safe, an industry leader in abuse risk management, to train all of our staff on abuse prevention. Staff are required to watch a series of detailed videos (1:45 minutes in total) that increase awareness and give tools for prevention. They must pass an online test to receive their accreditation. Find out more about Ministry Safe at www.ministrysafe.com.
A Culture of SafetyEach staff will complete a series of about 5 online training courses that address some of the most helpful topics for camp counselors to feel confident in before campers arrive. The online training is coupled with an additional 12 days of face-to-face training for the entire summer team. We adhere to strict policies, including:
The Rule of ThreeAll of our staff are trained to never be alone with a camper in a private place. While one-on-one conversations are an important part of our ministry, they should always be done in public places with other people around. Our campus is designed with this in mind, providing ample locations for private conversations in plain sight.
Two Up, One DownStaff are encouraged to hold others responsible for abiding by these rules. They are specifically encouraged to actively ensure that their supervisors (2 levels up) and their direct reports (one level down) are creating this culture of safety. All suspicious behavior is expected to be addressed immediately. This ensures that all staff, including directors, are monitored consistently.
Suggestion BoxA suggestion box is located in a central location. Campers are encouraged to suggest changes to menus, activities, etc. However, on Opening Day, we highlight this Box as a location where they can anonymously report a situation that appeared suspicious or simply made them uncomfortable. We want campers to know that they can anonymously let the leadership know about anything they want to.
Incident ReportsStaff fill out Incident Reports as needed regarding anything that appears out of the ordinary. This could include an argument, a crying child, or simply a situation that made the staffer uncomfortable. These reports are reviewed by the majority of the leadership team when received and are also logged to investigate trends in our culture.
Staff are also trained on appropriate and inappropriate physical and verbal interactions, as well as acceptable contact with campers outside of camp. We also train and prepare our staff on how to report abuse of any kind.