LLYC takes very seriously the responsibility to provide a high level of care for your child. With safety as a first priority, we have made extensive efforts to reduce the risks inherent in everything we do.
Our camp counselors and staff are thoroughly interviewed, carefully selected, and specially trained to provide campers with thoughtful, spiritual, and compassionate attention. Our incredible staff help make LLYC an exceptional experience for young people.
The camper-to-staff ratio at LLYC is 4-to-1, ensuring no camper gets overlooked. We are pleased to say that more than 55% of our staff return to work the next summer, ensuring lots of valuable experience in the Canyon. The majority of our referrals for new hires come from our existing staff, who we trust most to bring us great people.
We get to know each applicant through a rigorous application and interview process. We ask intentional questions about their story, their interests, their strengths and weaknesses, and their faith. LLYC applicants are also required to submit two references. In addition, we complete thorough background checks on all levels of staff and volunteers at camp for both in-state and out-of-state hires.
We work hard to hire people with the highest relational abilities, integrity, personal and spiritual maturity, enthusiasm for life, and an aptitude for working with young people.
Our staff receive 40-80 hours (varies by position) of intensive job-specific training. Every staff member attends sessions on mental health awareness, social and emotional care of others, abuse awareness and prevention, how (and how not!) to respond to misbehavior, as well as many practical activity and facilitation trainings.
Our counselors receive additional training in how to engage in ministry at LLYC. We discuss how to lovingly walk alongside campers with questions about faith and life. We teach helpful strategies for getting to know campers well. We talk in depth about how to listen and help campers feel heard. We practice facilitating meaningful discussion. We discuss how (and how not!) to respond if a camper opens up about challenges, tough issues, or painful experiences. In addition, we teach staff to recognize and respond to bullying in the camp setting. Our goal is to create a healthy, encouraging environment in cabins and in camp so that campers can be themselves without fear of judgment or criticism from anyone.
We pack in a LOT of information during our staff training sessions, and we work hard with our staff in order to equip them to care for campers with the highest level of hospitality and love.
At LLYC, we want to do everything in our power to keep campers safe from all forms of abuse. We are committed to educating every staff member in how to look for and stop potential threats and how to report them.
All staff are required to complete a comprehensive online course prior to arriving at camp. This course teaches and tests each person on facts about sexual abuse awareness and prevention. During our Staff Training Week we use a state-approved consultant and professional counselor to make sure everyone understands the rules of conduct with campers and best practices for abuse prevention. The counselor is also a resource to any staff with personal issues related to any form of abuse. During our training, we teach standards for community living and articulate and demonstrate appropriate behavior when working at camp and building relationships with campers.
With regard to all activities, LLYC is committed to the highest quality experience, excellence in training, professional construction to industry standards, comprehensive inspections, and the best equipment in the industry. This applies to high ropes activites, target sports, mountain biking, and waterfront activities.
To ensure the highest level of risk management for our guests, all staff who lead or supervise any activity must go through a thorough training and evaluation process.
For our high ropes activities, LLYC contracts with a third-party Professional Vendor certified by the Association for Challenge Course Technology (ACCT) to service and inspect all of our challenge course elements and equipment on a yearly basis. We also contract with this accredited vendor to perform an intensive, 40 hour, on-site training which supplies our high ropes facilitators with an ACCT Level 1 certification. Our policy is that any use of any high ropes element must be under the direct supervision of a facilitator currently certified for that element.
For all activities in the Canyon, we encourage campers to seek their own level of challenge and do not coerce anyone to participate.
LLYC is committed to meeting or exceeding the industry standards for waterfront policies and procedures which are set by the American Red Cross. To ensure the highest level of risk management for our guests, all waterfront staff must go through a rigorous training and evaluation process before they may lead or supervise a waterfront activity.
For the sake of safety and efficiency, a minimum number of staff are required to operate each waterfront. All waterfront staff are trained to respond to any emergency or crisis that might arise and are equipped by a robust Emergency Action Plan.
Historically, rains in excess of five inches in a few hours can cause flooding. We have a robust flood response plan in place. We have the ability to quickly scan our river road for pedestrians and traffic and, if necessary, we are able to shut down all access points to the river. None of our buildings or lodgings are below the one hundred year flood plain.
Our full-time youth camp directors and our operations team are deeply committed to maintaining the excellence and safety of our camp facilities and grounds. All buildings and property are surveyed daily for potential hazards, and we address issues quickly as they arise.
Our staff are strategic and thoughtful about protecting campers during adverse weather. We control for hazardous terrain, trees and limbs. We regularly maintain playfields, roads, and trails. And we have robust Emergency Action Plans in place for any situations which may arise on our property including but not limited to fire, flood, active shooter, and lost persons on property.
We have full-time staff in the canyon at all times who are trained in the prevention of and response to any type of emergency or crisis in the Canyon. In addition to that, our summer staff are trained to implement our Emergency Action Plans.
We use vehicles to transport campers to activities outside the immediate boundaries of Singing Hills or Echo Valley. All passengers are required to be seated in the bed of a pickup truck, outfitted with benches and safety rails, with the tailgate up.
Laity Lodge Youth Camp is a licensed camp with the Texas Department of State Health Services (TDSHS). To learn more about what it means to be a licensed camp in the state of Texas, visit the TDSHS website.
TDSHS inspects our camp each summer and grades us on every critical aspect of camp facilities including kitchen facilities and food preparation, clinic facilities and administration of health care, cabin standards and ratios between campers and counselors, waterfront safety and life-guarding procedures, adventure-recreation elements and target sports safety. They also audit our staff-application process, our Sexual Abuse and Awareness Training program, and our criminal background checks. We are pleased to report our recent TDSHS inspections scores have been perfect with no deficiencies.
Laity Lodge Youth Camp is an exciting and adventurous highlight for many campers every summer! With so many wonderful activities, there is a risk of injury and common ailments. This is where the healthcare team steps in to share their gifts of knowledge, skill, and healing to all our campers and staff.
As we are 60 minutes from the nearest hospital, LLYC feels strongly about ensuring a strong canyon healthcare system. The healthcare team includes a medical provider (MD, APRN, PA), nurses, and healthcare assistants that staff the clinics. These skilled professionals operate according to care guidelines, protocols, and standing orders which are approved annually by our Medical Advisory Board.
We have clinics at both campsites which are furnished with equipment, supplies, and medications that meet or exceed industry standards and allow us the ability to treat a wide range of illnesses, aches, and injuries as they may occur.
Across the Canyon we have AED’s, first aid kits, and rescue equipment strategically placed to be available if needed. In the event of a major injury or illness we have a robust Emergency Action Plan in place. At the direction of our medical staff, we can decide to transport a patient to the hospital in Kerrville, call Frio Canyon EMS to come to the Canyon, or request a helicopter evacuation from one of our eight PELA (pre-existing landing area) sites. (Due to our remote location, the method of patient transport will be determined by Frio Canyon EMS and on-site healthcare professionals.)
What if my camper gets sick or injured?
Each campsite has a healthcare team readily available to address camper and staff health needs. Each clinic stocks a broad array of over-the-counter medications for as-needed use. The clinic healthcare staff will evaluate your camper and determine the plan for treatment following our standing orders and clinic guidelines. If your child’s concern does not fall within these parameters, he or she will be evaluated and treated by our camp practitioner. Select prescription medications are kept in the clinics to begin treatment as soon as possible.
Should your child become ill while at camp or sustain an injury, we will contact you according to our Parent Call Policy (link to that? As we have limited isolation space and healthcare staff, we ask that you have a workable plan in place to be able to pick up your child from camp within eight (8) hours should that be needed (injury, illness, etc).
What if my camper has a medical condition?
It is very important to tell us about your camper’s medical and mental health needs in the camper’s health history so we can provide the best care for him/her in your absence. During the online registration process, you are prompted to complete a health history about your child. Please be thorough and include anything we may need to know.
Nursing staff review the health histories before camp, if we have questions about your child’s health history, we will contact you to talk through things. If you have health concerns you would like us to be aware of, feel free to contact Candi Douthit (firstname.lastname@example.org) directly. It is much easier to have a plan to support the camper prior to check-in day so we set them up for a successful camp experience!
Prior to your camper’s session, you will receive an email prompt to complete the online medication form through Circuitree (the registration portal). It’s important to have ALL medications included and updated on the medical form before check-in. If medications are not updated in the health record, your check-in process will be delayed.
If you are sending medications, please review the information below to ensure you are following our policies.
Medication Drop Off/Pick-Up
ALL medications need to be given to healthcare staff on check-in day. No medications may be kept in cabins except for rescue medications (with your written permission).
On Saturday pick up your meds from the healthcare staff table while picking up your camper. Please don’t forget! Medications that are not picked up will be disposed of as we cannot legally ship them to you. Please be sure to pick up your medications.
LLYC Medication Rules:
All medications (prescription and over-the-counter) must be kept in the clinic/ranch house.
Medications much be in original bottles with accurate name, dose, and frequency details (we follow these instructions when administering medications)
Medications cannot be expired.
Medications will be given per recommended pediatric dosing unless otherwise ordered by the practitioner.
No pill boxes/organizers are excepted as we cannot verify the medications. Contact Director of Health for special circumstances.
No vitamins or supplements will be given without a practitioner order (see below for more detail). *This includes Melatonin
No CBD or essential oils will be given.
-Source: Texas Dept of Health laws and Nursing Regulations
Important Medication Reminders:
No dinner medications are given on Check-in days and no breakfast medications are given on Closing days. Parents should give these doses prior to leaving camp on Sunday and upon picking up your child on Saturday.
For daily medications, breakfast is the best time of day to give medications to campers.
Melatonin: we must administer this per recommended pediatric dosing unless otherwise prescribed.
6-12 yr olds: 2-3mg
13 yr olds and older: up to 5mg
What medications should they bring?
Please leave all non-prescription medications at home. Standing in line for meds at mealtime is not a camper’s favorite thing to do. If it’s not essential, your camper will thank you for not sending them!
If you believe your camper benefits by using their own over the counter (OTC) medications, add these to the medication list and bring the medication in the original bottle to camp (**see below for vitamins, oils, and CBD). Please know we are well stocked with most OTC medications they may need so you can feel at ease leaving these at home.
Where do I take their medications on Check-In day?
As part of the check-in process, you will visit with the healthcare staff and “check-in” your child’s medication. This gives the nurses a chance to verify the medications to be given are correct and ask any questions. It also allows you to share any health concerns or tidbits that can help us care for your child during camp.
Can my camper keep their medications?
No. All medications (both prescription and over-the counter) must be checked in when you drop off your camper. No medications (prescription or OTC) can be kept in the cabins per Texas State law. Exceptions are made for rescue medications, diabetic supplies, and select creams which parents sign a written release form to allow.
Echo Valley campers can keep their rescue medications. Singing Hills counselors/healthcare staff are responsible for these medications due to the age of the campers.
*Should your child feel ill or feel they need a medication, they should talk to their counselor who can take them to the clinic for assistance.
This medication storage rule applies to staff as well, so there is no possibility of a camper getting into a staffer’s luggage and accessing medication.
When/where should my camper go for medications?
Scheduled medications are given at mealtimes at the ranch house and after round up at the Pavilion. For time-sensitive bedtime medications, campers report with their counselor to the clinic after the late-night event.
What if my camper doesn’t take his/her medications?
Healthcare staff collaborate with counselors and campers to make every effort to administer scheduled medications. We will attempt to locate them where they are in programming and administer the medication. If the camper continues (beyond 24hrs) to not be a partner taking their medications or prescribed medical treatment, parents will be consulted to create a plan that supports the health and safety of the camper and guests/staff. Please support us in this effort by discussing this with your child before camp.
What about supplements and vitamins?
Due to the already large number of medicines administered each week, we do not administer vitamins or supplements unless they are accompanied by a prescription or practitioner letter. This rule is because there are numerous vitamins and supplements as healthcare staff need an order to administer them safely and legally to minors. This order can be uploaded to the registration or can be emailed to email@example.com. Without an order, we will not administer supplements or vitamins.
What about CBD and essential oils?
At LLYC we do not administer CBD or essential oils to campers. Please do not pack it in your camper’s luggage.
How do I get medications back?
On Saturday pick up your meds from the healthcare staff table while picking up your camper. Please don’t forget! Medications that are not picked up will be disposed of as we cannot legally ship them to you.
In the event a child experiences communicable disease symptoms, Laity Lodge Youth Camp Health Services will test campers and staff for the suspected illness (Strep, Covid, Flu, etc). Should the child test positive, parents may be asked to pick up their child from camp within 8 hours of being contacted. Should this situation occur, parents, and clinic staff will confer to determine the best plan of care for the child.
Should you have questions about the LLYC healthcare processes, please contact Candi Douthit, Director of Health Services, at firstname.lastname@example.org.