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Frequently Asked Questions
Below are questions many of our parents and campers have asked over the years. Please read through them to see if they answer or cover some of yours. If you donít see them, or if youíve got some of your own please feel free to call the camp office (718.251.6200), stop by in person (5945 Strickland Ave) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org anytime.
Just remember, some of your questions or comments can prove helpful and to other campers and their families.
Mill Basin Day Camp is dedicated to providing children and their families a fun, safe and caring summer camp experience. Through innovative programming and careful staff selection, our campers will make friends and share experiences and memories that can last a lifetime.
We proudly opened our doors in 1998 and provide a wonderful summer experience for boys and girls each summer ages 3 - 14.
In the Pre-School, each group is headed by a licensed teacher, with Assistant Counselors, Junior Counselors and CITs (counselors in training), 15 years old with valid NYC working papers. Pre-School has the most staff than any other groups, as this age group requires the most individualized attention.
In the Adventures (grades 1 - 2) and Stars Camps (grades 3, 4 & 5), groups are limited to a 1 to 7, with a Head Counselor (2nd year college student minimum required), Assistant Counselor, Junior Counselor and CIT. Many campers attend only part weeks, making the counselor/camper ratio even smaller on most days.
In the Explorers Camp grades 6-7, each group is limited to a 1 to 8, with a Head Counselor (2nd year college student minimum required) and 2 Assistant Counselors and/or Junior Counselors.
Teen Quest Camp grades 8-9, each group has 3 Head Counselors (2nd year college student minimum required) that are specially chosen to work with the Teens based on prior experience.
It should be noted that many of our campers do not attend camp 5 days a week or for a full 8 week summer. Therefore, there are days when the groups have smaller numbers of campers. Also, most of our Head Counselors if they are not returning from the previous summer have worked at Mill Basin Day Camp for years and have moved up from being CITs or Junior Counselors, etc.
All Head Counselors are mandated to be certified in CPR and First Aid from the American Red Cross. All staff at Mill Basin Day Camp are interviewed by directors and anyone being offered a position that is over 18 years of age have their references and backgrounds checked. All staff must attend mandatory staff training sessions prior beginning work. Experience with working with children is mandatory in most cases.
Many of our staff return each summer & and have moved up the ranks from Junior Counselors to Head Counselors. Most of our campers are also returning. We also have many former campers returning this year as CITs.
Each group has various methods for integrating new campers into their groups. Head Counselors are trained to make sure that all campers are introduced to the other campers and are made to feel part of the group in the first few minutes of the camp day. Directors are also at hand to help new campers make any adjustments that they may need. We also find that while your child may be new to our camp, they may know some of the campers from school or extra-curricular activities that they may attend.
The best reference any camp can provide is the recommendation of other parents and campers. However, all camp records are available to the public by contacting the NYC Department of Health Day Camp Division.
Mill Basin Day Camp offers a wide variety of daily activities for our campers. Swimming, Arts & Crafts, Dance, Karate, Sports, Gymnastics, Magic, Video Game Room, Baking Center, IJAX (Giant Screen Theatre) and Computers are just some of what we offer. Each group follows a pre structured daily schedule. Swimming is the only activity that is offered every day and on some days, twice! All other activities are evenly distributed so that each group gets to participate in all that we have to offer.
The typical camp day begins with a first activity at 9:00 am. There are 3 periods in the morning, then lunch, 3 periods in the afternoon. Activities are both indoor and outdoor and are balanced accordingly. Pre-School dismissal times and activities are a bit different and will be explained at a pre-camp parents meeting for registered families.
Camp activities are chosen prior to the start of camp. While all campers are encouraged to participate in all of the activities, we do not force any child to do anything that they are uncomfortable doing. That said, if a camper does not want to participate in an activity other than swimming - he or she must stay with the group until that activity is finished. If a child does not want to swim, he or she is placed with a counselor and taken to a shaded or indoor activity until the period ends. If there is a camper who refuses to participate in any activities, a director will attempt to find out why. If needed, a parent may be called to help to solve the issue.
Our camp staff consists of professionals, many of whom who continue to work in summer camp or child related fields throughout the year. All leader staff are trained in CPR and First Aid and our aquatics programs are staffed by licensed personnel, as required by the N.Y.C. Board of Health and American Red Cross. We equip are staff and facility with the latest safety and technological products in order to maintain constant contact and security both on and off the premises.
We are a non competitive no pressure camp with a no winner, no loser mantra. All games and activities promote fun and safety. Counselors support and encourage good sportsmanship.
No children are alike and at Mill Basin Day Camp we treat each camper as an individual. Some campers are good athletes, others are very artistic- we try to offer praise and encouragement in all situations. Instruction is offered in all areas and we hope that campers are able to learn new skills as well as improve existing skills and come away from their camp experience very positively.
In the Pre-School, there is a quiet time scheduled daily, however, we find that most campers do not nap. It is a time when the lights are dimmed and campers can lay on their blanket or mat. In the Adventures camp, some of the activities take place in air-conditioned rooms, which could be used for quiet activities.
Safety is our highest priority at Mill Basin Day Camp. Throughout the building there are video cameras that are taping at all times. Every activity room is equipped with a phone that is directly connected to 911 and the main camp office via intercom. We also have a public address system throughout the facility. Each of our Directors carry 2-way Nextel Cell Phones/Radios which keep us in constant contact. These phones are taken on all trips as well. Any persons entering the building after morning drop-off have to go into the camp office first. If you have to pick up your child(ren) earlier than the dismissal time must also come into the office we will bring your child(ren) to you. If you must send someone other than yourself or your authorized pick-up person, you must call ahead to let the office staff know and that person MUST have picture I.D. or they will not be allowed to take your child(ren). If there are any special concerns that you have concerning authorized pick-ups, a director will be happy to handle that personally. First Aid kits are carried on all trips.
All Head Counselors are required to be certified by the American Red Cross in CPR and First Aid. In addition, all camp staff is required to attend a mandatory abuse-prevention training prior to the first day of camp.
At Mill Basin Day Camp we have on site a full First Aid center. It is staffed by 2 Full Time nurses or certified R.T.E. - Responding to Emergencies Technicians.