It’s almost that time… summer camp. Finding allergy-aware camps for kids with food allergies can be a real challenge and I’m always on the look-out for a fun, educational and allergy-aware environment. Based on the experience of the CTFoodAllergyMom, the following camps get a thumbs up:
Connecticut is fortunate to have a great network of YMCAs that offer a fun and fulfilling summer camp experience. The YMCA system has also proven itself to be allergy-aware and adept in managing food allergies, especially peanut allergy. Inclusion is key at these camps. Charlies Clifford, the director of the Woodruff Family YMCA in Milford has this to say: “The YMCA is an inclusive organization and will turn no one away for inability to pay, religious background, race, creed or even allergy! The YMCA summer day camp is allergy aware and being so means that we ask our families to refrain from sending in peanuts and peanut products in their campers’ lunches and train our staff to be aware of, and manage the issue of food sensitivities among their campers.”
Hamden Hall Country Day School
CtFoodAllergyMom admits to a little favoritism here, but only because this school has proven its dedication of managing food allergies of all kinds, and in maintaining a peanut-free campus. The summer camps range from fun and sports camps through education and drama. The staff are knowledgeable and proactive, and the new Beckerman Athletic Center is without equal.
Great River Golf Course
The Great River Golf Course offers half-day and full-day golf camps to young golfers of all levels. The golf professionals focus on instruction but not at the expense of fun. The lower level snack shop and Monty’s River Grille have menus that provide many allergy-free choices. Just make sure to make your server aware of your allergy and of course, make sure your child ALWAYS carries an Epi-Pen.
Skyhawks offers sports camps in many communities throughout CT, usually through a municipal recreation department. The staffers are generally college students and many times are from the local area. Maybe because of their age, the Skyhawks staff are usually very allergy aware. These camps generally also have allergy management protocols in place. These camps are not, however, nut/peanut or allergy free. It’s up to you to ask your camp staff to make camper parents aware of your allergy concerns and ask for cooperation. This takes a little extra effort but the rewards have been worth it.