Frequently Asked Questions
What if my child doesn’t know anyone in the cabin?
Returning campers are our greatest allies in making your child feel welcome and all are under the ever-watchful eyes of counselors who ensure that cabin bonding occurs and new friends are made. With the start of each session, the first thing returning campers do is to prepare to welcome the first timers. Senior campers also volunteer to “adopt” the youngest first timers for the first orientation week of camp. We have many gatherings held with Diabetes Camping Educational Services all designed to integrate new campers into our camp community and to be made to feel a special part of it.
What if my child misses’ home?
It’s not unusual and can happen at almost any age. Our counselors are specially trained and are sensitive to the emotions experienced by campers who miss home. The most important antidotes we offer to a child who is missing home are: love, caring, sympathy and things to do to keep them busy! It is important, too, to acknowledge to the camper that what he or she is experiencing is real, that it can be painful, but with time will pass. We have a commonsense approach... i.e., keep a child that is missing home as engaged in camp life as possible and consult and work with the parents (behind the scenes) to help with the camper’s positive adjustment.
How can I get in touch with my child while he/she are at Camp?
If you have an issue or concern about your child – our Directors or Camp Mentor Counselor is your primary point of contact while your child is at Camp. You may email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 310-751-3057. Parents are encouraged to write letters to stay in contact with their camper, especially those who have not been away from home before.
What mailing address do I use to send letters or packages to my child while they are at Camp?
We encourage parents to send a few letters prior to their child's session, as it's always a nice gift for the first day of Camp. All letters and packages for campers should be addressed as follows:
Are cell phones allowed at Camp?
After arriving at Camp each summer we’re surprised to discover how many of our campers ignore our cell phone policy and had cell phones with them. This was especially concerning because the phone policy, signed by parents and campers, specifically states that no campers should have phones, or if their phone is part of their CGM system, that their sim cards be removed. We want our campers to gain a new level of independence through our program and not be distracted by text messages or social media during their time at Camp. Those who wish to ignore this policy may be placed on a behavior contract. Camp will not be held responsible for any lost or stolen cell phones and or SIM cards. Thank you for understanding.
When can I visit?
We do not allow families or guests to visit Camp during our youth sessions. If you would like to meet our Staff and Directors prior to Camp we encourage all of our campers to attend our Summer Kick-Off BBQ in June or our family work weekend in April. Attending one of our Winter or Summer Family Camps is also another great option! More info. can be found on our website under the "Events" tab.
Health and Safety
How do you protect the health and safety of your campers?
The medical program is designed to impart self-management skills, which can lead to a longer and healthier life. All cabins are fully enclosed to accommodate eight to eleven youth and a trained counselor. Attendance at these sessions is restricted to youth and teens with insulin-dependent diabetes.
…on the waterfront?
We follow the American Red Cross guidelines and swim tests, and personalized swim instruction. Our pool does have a roped off shallow end, along with life vests for those in need.
Is there a hospital nearby?
Yes, located in Big Bear Lake & Loma Linda in Redlands.
In case of emergency, how are parents notified?
In the event of an emergency, the emergency contacts of all campers would be notified as soon as possible via, email, EZ-Text and or on social media. Camp has emergency plans for multiple contingencies, including those that would require us to evacuate camp.
Does Conrad Chinnock make provisions for special diets?
We do our best to accommodate lactose intolerant and vegetarian/vegan diets, but ask that you please contact Camp to discuss your child’s dietary needs by emailing email@example.com.
What about the Food?
Our food is nutritious and well prepared. Our Food Service Manager along with our dietary staff provides carbohydrate counts for each meal. Assistance will be provided for youth who are unable to count their carbohydrates.
• Tdap vaccine is now required for children over age 11, booster every 10 years
• IPV (Poliovirus)
• HIB (Haemophilus influenza type b bacteria)
• PCV 13 (Pneumococcal) vaccine
• Hepatitis B
• MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella) or serologic evidence of immunity. Adults born before 1957 are assumed to be immune to measles
• Varicella vaccine (Varivax – for Chicken Pox), or serologic or historical evidence of immunity
• Menactra (Meningococcal disease / Meningitis) – required for those age 11 and older
Camp Safety During COVID-19
We cannot wait to see all of you at Camp once again. We will remain transparent and keep you informed of any updated information or guidelines from the State. We want you to feel comfortable that Camp Conard Chinnock is acting progressively yet responsibly in order to meet the medical and safety needs of all of our children, staff, volunteers, and parents. The outlook is bright as we have already seen a few of our board members and medical volunteers vaccinated. We are working closely with the American Camping Association, CDC, and other health officials to prioritize the health and safety of our community. As more people become vaccinated we sincerely believe there will be in person programs in Summer 2021.
1.) As we strive to make camp as safe as possible for summer 2021, we will be requiring documentation (similar to other health records, vaccination records) for campers and staff to minimize potential risk of COVID-19 infections for all while at camp.
2.) If your child is sick, has a fever, or has any signs of illness, keep them home. If the camp calls you to pick up your ill child, you must be able to pick up your child or secure a local trusted adult to pick up your child within 12 hours.
3.) If someone in your household has tested positive for Covid-19 relevant to your child’s camp time notify the camp office immediately 310-751-3057 to ensure the safety of others, as your camper will not be permitted to attend their session(s). Refund options will be available.
5.) If someone in your child’s cabin group comes down with Covid 19, we will notify you in writing via email. No personal information will be shared.
Additional details will be forthcoming as we await appropriate public health guidelines.
Who joins your staff?
Individuals with camping experience, recent and older former campers, young adults from around the world, together with a core group of professionals that returns every summer to assure the preservation of Camp Conrad Chinnock, traditions and level of excellence–every single member of the Camp Conrad Chinnock staff undergoes an intense selection process that starts with the validation of a deep love and empathy for children of all ages, a pied piper like capacity for getting and keeping kids excited about the opportunities around them and a heightened sense of responsibility and common sense essential in the care and supervision of children.
Where does your staff come from?
We have a core group of counselors that return every summer. It maintains our spirit, traditions and level of excellence. They come from all over Southern California and farther! The balance of our counselors comes from a variety of backgrounds.
How old are your counselors?
Approximately 18 - 30 years of age, with over 85% of them living with Type 1 diabetes themselves.
What percentage of your staff returns the next year, outside of your core group?
How do you select your counselors?
What kind of special training do you have for your staff?
Our staff successfully completes an intensive, 3 day, exclusive Camp Conrad Chinnock staff training program offered pre-season, every summer. We also offer pre-season lifeguard training and recertification for First Aid CPR for those positions that require appropriate certifications from staff, especially in certain more “front line” activities like swimming and adventure wilderness trips.
What if we forget to send something with our child?
We'll provide a packing list a few weeks prior to your childs session. We also will remind you more than once to label your child’s clothes, as if they are staying for 2 sessions their clothes are sent off premises for laundry; and, inevitably, some things go missing. As for forgotten items, don’t worry. We have daily US postal service. We have a small camp store for necessities like soap, toothbrushes and hats.
How often is laundry done?
Laundry is sent out only if your child is staying more than one session in cabin laundry bags to the Big Bear Lake Laundromat in town and comes back that evening or next day. We ask that parents send enough clothing to get a child through the week and make sure camper names are included on all clothing. Do not pack expensive clothing, as sometimes clothes do go missing.
How can I communicate with my child?
1.) Parents are encouraged to write letters and mail prior to their session. If you write multiple letters at once we'll happily distribute them throughout the week. Campers can purchase postcards and postage in our Camp store. We do dedicated one evening per session to write home as an all Camp activity.
What makes an ideal Conrad Chinnock camper?
An “ideal” Conrad Chinnock Camper is intellectually curious, environmentally adventurous, enjoys the out-of-doors, is friendly and kind and wants to have fun!
Where are you located?
Among the tall pines of the Barton Flats Recreation Area within the San Bernardino Mountains near Big Bear.
What is my best strategy to ensure a space for my child?
Enroll fast and early. Some age categories fill very quickly. Enroll during the December to March months to receive early bird incentives.
How can I donate to the Camp Conrad Chinnock Scholarship Fund?
There are two ways you can donate to the Camp Conrad Chinnock Scholarship Fund. The first is mailing a check made out to Diabetes Camping and Educational Services (DCES) to the Camp office. The second option is visit our "Home" page and click the donation button. All contributions or tax deductible and come with a BIG Thank you!
Can I send care packages to camp?
Absolutely! BUT, please don’t send any food (for bug and critter reasons).
Where is the camp bus stop located?
For better management of our campers we're no longer offering drop-off directly at Camp Conrad Chinnock. All campers must check-in at the bus stop in Fontana, as campers will directly meet their counselor and fellow cabinmates which leads to stronger bonding.
Can I drop off my child directly at Camp Conrad Chinnock?
No, to better manage our campers, we are not offering camper drop off directly at Camp Corad Chinnock for any Youth or Teen Session. All campers must check-in at our bus stop in Fontana and ride the bus to camp.
What is your cancellation policy?
Can my camper attend multiple sessions?
Campers are able to register for each session of each camp within the same age range, but space is limited. This means your camper has the opportunity to stay for 1, 2 or 3 sessions of Teen. Same applies for our Youth sessions 4 and 5. While some campers find it harder to stay engage for multiple sessions, we have also received feedback from previous campers that they’ve enjoyed the program and building stronger connections when attended multiple weeks of camp.
How many campers do you take?
We pride ourselves on our relatively small size roughly 120 campers at any one time—as it affords a more personalized, nurturing, familial environment and experience.
Are you gender specific?
We are a residential co-educational camp for all activities with separate sleeping cabins for boys and girls.
Percent of campers repeating enrollment year-to-year
Who is accepted the to the CIT program?
The Leadership Training Program is open to teenagers ages 17 to 19, with or without diabetes, has an application process. Qualifications we look for in our counselors in training are teens that can demonstrate a level of maturity that enables them to assume responsibility and develop strong leadership skills.
When is the CIT application due?
Applications are due May 1, 2020. However, we accept a limited amount of supreme canidates into our porgram, one a first come first serve basis.
What if I already completed the CIT Prorgram?
If you have already completed the CIT program, you can apply to be on staff member directly online!
What does the 1st year CIT program provide?
The CIT program provides a learning environment for young adults to acquire leadership skills through daily teachings at camp which can be utilized in every aspect of life.
Family Winter Camp
What are the dirving directions to Camp Conrad Chinnock?
Fun in the snow!?!
Camp is at 6,800 feet, so listen to snow reports for the San Bernardino Mountains at or below that level. Temperatures may range between 20 and 50 degrees. For cur rent weather conditions, go to http:// www.bensweather.com/.
I still owe camp fees or haven’t paid money for the camp store. Can I bring the money to check-in?
Are car chains required?
What insurance coverage is provided while at camp?
DCES provides accident/ sickness coverage to campers. This coverage is secondary to private health insurance held by the family. This coverage is separate from our liability insurance and provides coverage for deductibles and co-pays as needed.
How is diabetes managed at family camp?
Diabetes management decisions are left up to each family while at family camp. The medical team is happy to advise and help with the decision making process. There will be time to speak individually with the Physicians and Diabetes Educators by appointment, as well as, informally. This is a great opportunity to ask all those questions you only remember after leaving your doctor’s office! While at camp, therapy and diabetes care suggestions are not to be used in place of the relationship your family already has with your regular diabetes specialist. Instead we ask that they be the topic of discussion at your next visit with him or her.
What happens on the first day of Winter Camp and when does it conclude?
Families will arrive between 11:00a.m. and 12:30p.m. on Saturday. Lunch will be at 1:00p.m. We will have an orientation followed by family recreation activities, introductions and games, and dinner. After dinner, staff will play a icebreaker games with the kids while the parents enjoy a special social hour with desserts and beverages. The night ends with a fun and entertaining activity and snack. The weekend will also include guest speakers, formal and informal discussions, snow play (if weather permits), and most importantly connecting with others who understand Type 1 diabetes. The weekend will conclude after breakfast, as families depart by 10:00am.