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As you have heard from the JCC, we will not be able to run our Tiyul Adventure Day Camp program as planned this summer. Through ongoing intensive communication with local public health experts and other camps both locally and around the country, we are looking closely at all the risks and considerations involved with any programming this summer. Our top priority has always and will always be the safety and wellbeing of our campers and staff, and we feel clear that this is the right decision for our Tiyul camp community.

But don’t give up hope! We are hard at work developing a new alternate program that will allow you to come learn and play outside at Pearlstone this summer! We are conceiving a new outdoor Tiyul summer day-program on the Pearlstone Campus that will be 100% aligned with public health protocols while enabling small socially-distanced groups the opportunity to connect with our goats and chickens, play in our creek, learn to build a campfire, and more. We will only run this new program, Summer Tiyul at Pearlstoneif the Baltimore County Department of Health approves our plans AND if we feel confident that we can move forward safely.

Below are resources, details, and opportunities for our camp community to come together and support one another during this time.

 

General FAQs

What is the alternative summer program plan?

We are planning on creating programs where small groups can be on our land, visit our animals, hike our trails, walk in the creek, and so much more! We are also looking at the possibility of short-term rentals of vacation housing or a campus club with membership. Our staff is hard at work trying to figure out what we can do in a safe way in accordance with county and state legislation. We hope to have details to announce very soon. If you want to learn more, register here https://www.pearlstonecenter.org/summer2020

In the meantime, check out the virtual programs we have created at https://pearlstonecenter.org/online

What ages of kids will be able to come to this alternate program?

Our program would be open to children who are rising 2nd - 8th grade. If you have older children who may be interested, please contact us. If there is enough interest to run a group, we will do our best to accommodate.

What is happening at Pearlstone on the land right now?

Pearlstone is not quiet, there is still a lot happening on our land! We are still taking care of the animals and the land. Our stewardship team is growing and harvesting produce, some is going to a local CSA, some is being donated, and the rest is going to our kitchen to be turned into meals that can be purchased for delivery in Baltimore. Check out https://www.pearlstonecenter.org/pearlstone-kitchen/ and https://www.pearlstonecenter.org/online to learn more.

How can I support Pearlstone at this time?

The financial impact of not opening this summer will be significant, and we are working hard to raise funds to keep Pearlstone here in the future. We are grateful to those families and foundations who have already pledged to support us.

While we won’t be having camp this summer, we’re still investing in being an active member of our community. Our farm team is hard at work growing food. Much of the food that is grown is being turned into meals that can be donated to Healthcare Heroes here in Baltimore and other partner organizations that help with food insecurity. To learn more, go to: https://www.pearlstonecenter.org/pearlstone-kitchen/donate/

We are deeply committed to keeping Pearlstone here for you to come back to when we are able to reopen. Your support at this time will be instrumental.

You can email us at tiyul@pearlstonecenter.org, we’d love to connect with you.
You can make a donation now by clicking here: https://www.pearlstonecenter.org/donate/

When can we come together as a camp community?

We will have an online gathering on Zoom on Wednesday, May 27th at 7pm. Please see the announcement email for the Zoom link.

What safety precautions are you putting in place this summer to minimize the risk of spreading COVID?

While the recommendations from the State and the CDC may evolve, at the moment we are planning to implement the following:
– All staff and adults onsite will have a face covering accessible at all times to wear.
– Children will undergo a daily health screening at drop off. Parents will be asked to confirm each child does not have a temperature over 100 and is not exhibiting any COVID-related symptoms. Staff will go through a similar screening process each morning.
– Groups are limited to 10 campers and 2 staff. Camp groups will be kept separate from each other all day. Drop off, morning circle, end of day circles, and pick up will happen in small groups.
– Parents will be asked to pack lunches with ice packs to keep in the camper’s backpack all morning. Campers will be responsible for their own belongings.
– Any high touch surfaces or communal spaces will be disinfected consistently between uses.
– We will have a designated area for any camper exhibiting COVID-related symptoms to wait until they can be picked up.
– We will be more likely to cancel a day of camp if the weather could force us to go inside for extended period of time.

What will you do if you find out a guest or staff member is diagnosed with COVID-19?

We will report the case to the MD Department of Public Health and will follow DPH recommendations on when and how to notify families of children that may have been in contact with that person.

COVID Financial FAQs

What are the options for the money I have paid Camp?

1. Get a full refund, including deposit,
2. Roll over registration and camp fees to summer 2021,
3. Donate some of your 2020 camp fees to support Pearlstone during this crisis.

We are heartbroken by this cancellation, amongst many others over the past months and the weeks and months to come. In aggregate, Pearlstone is absorbing catastrophic financial harm at this time. Please consider donating as much as you can in support of the full-time staff, our facilities, and the virtual programming we continue to offer during this time.

We will be reaching out to all families to discuss how they would like to process this summer's fees.

JCC Financial Options

Option 1: Tax-Deductible Gift to J Camps, LLC/Pearlstone
If you are able, please consider partnering with us by making a tax-deductible gift of some or all of your tuition. For families who are able, we hope you will consider an amount equivalent to what we have already invested into preparing for your summer – 1/3rd of your tuition. Any funds that you have already paid toward camp can be converted into a tax-deductible gift. If you choose to donate a minimum of $250 per camper, you will secure 5% off of 2020 prices for your selected J Camps program in 2021. You will receive an acknowledgement letter for tax purposes closer to the end of the calendar year.

Option 2: Credit to J Camps 2021
Apply some or all of the funds you have already paid towards J Camps 2021. Forwarding your tuition will ensure ongoing excellent J Camps programming for your family and help us through this financially difficult moment. If you choose to credit a minimum of $250 per camper, you will secure 2020 prices for your selected J Camps program in 2021. Account credits are valid through September 1, 2021.

Option 3: Partial or Full Refund
Request a partial or full refund of summer camp fees paid to date. Refunds will be processed by August 1st at the latest, although our goal is sooner. If you are experiencing financial hardship, please contact Rebecca at rchinsky@jcc.org and we will do our best to expedite your refund.

How to Make Your Selection:
Every family must submit their preference on the 2020 Cancellation Selection Form, which is located in your CampinTouch account. Forms are due June 12th.

To access the form: Log into CampInTouch, click on Forms & Documents, and click on the 2020 Cancellation Selection Form. Only one form is required per family.

Will my scholarship roll over for next summer? Will I still be eligible to apply for scholarship next year?

We continue to strive to make camp accessible to all. We understand that as financial situations may change each year, we ask that you re-apply next year should you and your family need financial assistance. This summer’s scholarships will not be rolled over to any future years. Any scholarship amount that came from your synagogue or other sources, will be refunded directly back to those organizations.

Can I donate a portion of my fees and get refunded the rest?

Yes, of course. We appreciate any additional donations to help us through this crisis.

We will be reaching out to all families to discuss how they would like to process this summer's fees and help them through the JCC's process.

When can I expect to get a refund?

We expect it will take about 1-2 months for you to receive your refund. It will come in the form of a check. If you are experiencing financial hardship, please contact Rebecca at rchinsky@jcc.org and they will do our best to expedite your refund.

We will be reaching out to all families to discuss how they would like to process this summer's fees.

If I roll over my fees for next summer, am I eligible to get a refund? Will I be able to choose any session once the dates are out?

If you roll over your fees for next summer then, yes you will be able to get a refund but our standard refund policy will go back into effect for next summer. Yes, as soon as we know our dates for Summer 2021, you will be able to choose the session dates that work best for your family.

If I choose to do your alternative summer program, can some of fees go towards that? And if that is cancelled will I get the full refund?

Yes, if you are interested in our alternative summer programs, you can apply some of your fees towards that. If we are unable to run in-person programs due to state or county regulations, you can receive a refund or choose to make a donation.

Resources for your family:

How are you ever going to talk to your kids about this?

We’ve pulled together some resources to support you but, the truth is, you’ve got this. Sit down together, cry with them over how unfair the world seems right now, ask about what they’ll miss most about camp … and remind them that they are safe and loved (by you and by us!).

Supporting Kids During the Coronavirus Crisis (Child Mind Institute)

Resources for Supporting Children’s Emotional Well-being during the COVID-19 Pandemic (Child Trends)

Parenting in a Pandemic: Tips to Keep the Calm at Home (American Academy of Pediatrics)

Parenting a Spirited/Difficult Child in the Time of COVID-19 (Psychology Today)

Dealing with Disruption: Strategies for Thriving in the New Normal (The Jewish Board)

That Discomfort You’re Feeling Is Grief (Harvard Business Review)

 

Questions? Please reach out to Miki Levran, Tiyul Camp Director at mlevran@pearlstonecenter.org