ApplicationThere is an extensive online application process that not only asks for information that would qualify them to serve as a counselor, but also requires answers related to their personal faith, their experience working with children, and their experience teaching certain skills. The application is a combination of short answer questions and essay questions that demand in-depth explanations.
ReferencesDuring the online application process, applicants are required to provide four references. We ask for a Pastor or Spiritual Mentor, a Teacher or a Coach, an Employer who has observed the applicant in a work setting, as well an a Character Reference or someone who knows the applicant very well. All four references are collected directly from the reference and independently from the applicant. After review, our Team of Directors contacts selects references directly to further discuss the applicant.
InterviewAfter their references have been checked, the applicant may be approved for a Phone Interview. This process takes about 1 hour where Directors want to hear firsthand about the applicant's faith, work ethic, ability to relate to children and make good adult decisions, while keeping the safety of our campers a priority. If impressed, the Director will set up a Follow-up Interview with another Camp Director with another round of questions. Multiple rounds of interviews allow us to compare notes and make well-informed hiring decisions.
Background CheckOnce applicants are fully vetted through the screening process, we require an extensive criminal background check that searches county courts, state sex offender registries, state Administrative Offices of Courts, Departments of Correction, and Departments of Public Safety, federal Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC), and proprietary compiled data. We also search the National Sex Offender Registries of all 50 States, Washington D.C., U.S. Territories and U.S. Native American Tribes. Furthermore, all staff are subject to Random Drug Screening.
Ensuring that your children are safe is our top priority. We believe this begins with our staff. Here are three ways we keep your child safe through the team we cultivate:
1) The way we recruit, screen, and hire our staff. The vast majority of our staff are previously known by someone else who has served on our team. While it's not required, this personal recommendation from a trusted party is helpful. We have already explained this process in detail above.
2) The policies we put into place are designed to protect both campers and staff. As we create policies and foster our camp culture, we keep the protection and safety of our campers in mind. There are policies that ensure one-on-one talks with campers and staff take place in our open common areas. Our campers and staff move in groups rather than pairs throughout the property. And, campers are always to be within "ear-shot" of multiple staff. These policies and others like them exist to protect both our campers and staffers.
3) The training our staff receive. Before any of our staff ever step foot on our property, they must complete online training that is designed to educate and equip them in a number of important areas pertaining to their role with children. We also require each staff person to complete Abuse Prevention Training, which empowers all of our staff, as a team, to actively protect the campers that are in our care. Once the staff arrive, we conduct a 9-12 day hands-on training period (depending on their position). A large amount of time is spent making sure that our staff are prepared to keep your children safe while in our care. (More details below.)
For more information about our training, please visit the Emotional Safety Page.