Camp Woodend: Frequently Asked Questions
Dynamic and Engaging Nature-Based Summer Camps
for Youth Pre-K through High School
- Camp Woodend: Frequently Asked Questions
- What is your Wellness and Covid-19 policy?
- Who do I call if I have questions?
- Do I have to be a Nature Forward Member to register for camp?
- How do I become a member?
- How do I know what camps are available?
- How does the waitlist work? What are my child’s chances of getting in?
- What is your refund policy for cancellations?
- Do you have extended camp?
- Who can I talk to about my child’s special needs (learning, behavior, health and allergy etc.)?
- What summer job opportunities do you have available? Do you have a CIT program for high-schoolers?
- I am already registered for summer camp. What do I need to have ready for the first day?
- Do you accept Allergy Action Plans and Asthma Action Plans that are signed by a primary care provider?
- Do you need a separate Medication Administration Authorization form for each medication (including over-the-counter meds)?
- Can you accept the Medication Administration Authorization form from school or from another camp?
- What if our primary care provider will not sign off on my camper’s authorization to self-carry or self-administer medication?
- What if my camper does not reside in the U.S.?
- My son/daughter really wants to register for a particular camp, but it’s full. Can I register for the other session being offered that week while I wait to see if there is a cancellation in the camp my child wants to sign up for?
- My child’s T-shirt is too big/small. Can I exchange it for another size?
- How do pick up sheets work?
- What if I don’t have a pick up sheet?
- Do you run background checks on your summer camp staff?
- Why am I charged a cancellation fee if you end up filling a spot from a waitlist?
- Are you a nut-free camp?
- Can my child walk or bike home from camp?
- What are Camp Woodend’s values?
- Camp Woodend
What is your Wellness and Covid-19 policy?
The health and safety of our campers is our top priority. By the start of camp, your camper must be up to date on the vaccinations required by public schools. Camp Woodend follows MCPS policies and CDC guidelines for masking, isolation, testing, and other recommendations. Protocols are subject to change throughout the summer.
Who do I call if I have questions?
For Camp Program Questions: Call 301-652-8107 or email [email protected]. For Registration Questions: Call 301-652-1851 or email [email protected]. For Membership Questions: Call 301-450-1471. For Volunteer Information: Call 301-450-1454.
Do I have to be a Nature Forward Member to register for camp?
You do not need to be a Nature Forward member to register for camp. However, you must be a member to register on opening day on 1/25/24 at 10 am, either by joining Nature Forward before that day, or by joining during the registration process. There are many advantages to joining, including discounted rates for summer camp and other Nature Forward programs, bi-monthly newsletters, and discounts at our shop. Membership fees are nonrefundable.
How do I become a member?
You can become a member when you register online for summer camp. Please pick the member rate then add a membership to your cart later. You can also join by calling 301-450-1471 or through membership by clicking to join online here.
How do I know what camps are available?
You can identify camp availability by starting the registration process and the system will show what is available. Any camp that is full will have a “waitlist only” option.
How does the waitlist work? What are my child’s chances of getting in?
Camp Woodend provides a waitlist for full camps. Waitlists are free. If a spot opens up in a camp, we will contact you and you will have 48 hours to decline or accept the spot. If the spot is accepted, payment must be made in 48 hours or the spot is forfeited.
There is always a chance that spots will open up in a camp, so we encourage anyone who has some flexibility in their schedule to join the waitlist. We have no way of predicting which camps will have space open up, but in our experience, many camps have at least one cancellation. Due to the number of children registered for waitlisted camps, we will only contact you if space becomes available.
What is your refund policy for cancellations?
Refund Policy Before Close of Business April 19, 2024
Your tuition is fully refundable less a $50 cancellation fee per week ($100 for a two week session), provided that you submit your cancellation request in writing to the Education Office. You may email your cancellation to [email protected].
Refund Policy After April 19, 2024
Cancellations must be made in writing at least 10 working days before the first day of the camp in which your child is registered, in order to be eligible for a 50% refund less a $25 cancellation fee per week ($50 for a two week session). You may email your cancellation to [email protected].
If Nature Forward cancels all or part of your child’s program for any reason, you will receive a full refund for the missed days minus the $5 registration fee, membership fees, and any scholarship donations.
There will be no refunds for cancellations made fewer than 10 business days before the camp’s start date. There are no refunds for missed days of camp.
Do you have extended camp?
Extended camp is open to all campers Grade K through 6. Extended camp provides participants with a
fun, relaxing end to their vigorous day at summer camp. Activities include crafts, outdoor games, quiet
time for books, and cards. We provide a snack of goldfish crackers as well. Sign up when registering
for camp and make sure to pick both weeks if you are signing up for a two-week session. Extended camp
spots are limited and we cannot guarantee a spot. Extended camp for K camps only runs until 3:45 pm. Due to
licensing regulations and space, we can’t offer an extended camp option until 5:00 pm for K campers. Extended camp for Grades 1-6 will run from 3:45-5:00 pm at a cost of $135 a week.
The normal drop off window will run from 8:45-9:15 am and pick up window will run 3:45-4:10 pm.
Who can I talk to about my child’s special needs (learning, behavior, health and allergy etc.)?
While Camp Woodend is a traditional camp (not specialized for specific special needs), we welcome all children and we do our very best to accommodate every child. The camp director is always available to discuss whether Camp Woodend is right for your child. Please call 301-652-8107 or email [email protected].
What summer job opportunities do you have available? Do you have a CIT program for high-schoolers?
For paid positions (must be over 18) see: Opportunities for Education Interns and Teachers. We do not have a traditional CIT program. However, we do have a Teen Naturalist Training (TNT) Program for students entering Grades 9, 10 or 11 in Fall 2024. These hours are eligible for Student Service Learning hours and families must pay to attend. Application is currently open at https://forms.office.com/r/cwD1Mjv4MS. Applications will be accepted from December 2023 through March 4, 2024 on a rolling basis. Once accepted, TNTs will register and pay through the camp registration system. Note: Acceptance into the TNT program is dependent on an interview.
I am already registered for summer camp. What do I need to have ready for the first day?
We will EMAIL you a final confirmation packet three weeks before the start date of your camp. We will email a health form in April that must be emailed to [email protected] at least one week before your child’s camp begins. This health form does not need to be completed by your doctor (we only need a doctor’s signature for any prescription or non-prescription medication taken at camp, see form at top of page). If you do not receive a confirmation packet via email a couple of weeks before your child’s first camp begins, please call 301-652-1851. If your child does not attend a U.S. school, you will need a copy of his or her immunization record (a copy from your child’s school or doctor will suffice).
Do you accept Allergy Action Plans and Asthma Action Plans that are signed by a primary care provider?
Yes, as long as all the information covered in the Medication Administration Authorization form is included on the action plan and it is signed by the primary care provider. Camp Woodend staff are authorized to administer these medications in the event of a life-threatening situation.
Do you need a separate Medication Administration Authorization form for each medication (including over-the-counter meds)?
Yes. We need a form signed by a doctor, even for Advil, Benadryl, Dramamine, etc.
Can you accept the Medication Administration Authorization form from school or from another camp?
We accept forms from another camp as long as it is the same form. School versions are not acceptable.
What if our primary care provider will not sign off on my camper’s authorization to self-carry or self-administer medication?
• For rescue medication, such as inhalers or epi-pens: staff can administer the medication, the provider does not have to sign the authorization to self-administer.
• For regularly scheduled medication for campers who are on the sanctuary during the day: we have staff who are certified to administer medications.
• For campers who have to take medications and are not on the sanctuary (camping trips, backpacking, etc): we need the doctor to sign the Self-Administration Authorization clause on the Medication Authorization Administration form. Call Denis Perez at 301-652-8107 or email [email protected] if you have any questions.
What if my camper does not reside in the U.S.?
Please complete this form and bring it with you to check-in: Immunization Records Form. This form must be completed by non-U.S. residents.
My son/daughter really wants to register for a particular camp, but it’s full. Can I register for the other session being offered that week while I wait to see if there is a cancellation in the camp my child wants to sign up for?
No, unless you want to pay the applicable cancellation fees if a spot opens up in the other session. Registering for a camp while waitlisting for the other camp offered that week prevents other parents from registering for a spot and is considered “placeholding.”
My child’s T-shirt is too big/small. Can I exchange it for another size?
We understand the camp T-shirt you get at check-in may not fit perfectly. But we base the T-shirt order on the sizes parents choose during the registration process online. If we exchange too many sizes, parents whose children are coming to camp later in the summer will not have the T-shirt sizes they ordered available. We appreciate your understanding.
How do pick up sheets work?
Each child is issued one set of three (3) pick up sheets each summer, regardless of how many camps your child is registered for. Hold onto them! When you drop off or pick up your child, put a pick up sheet on your dashboard so staff can see your child’s name and bring your child to your car.
What if I don’t have a pick up sheet?
You will be asked to list all the adults authorized to pick up your child on the health form. As long as that person is on your list and has a photo ID, he or she can pick up your child without a pick up sheet. For the safety of your children, we will not allow your child to leave with an adult unless he or she either has a pick up sheet or is on your list and has a photo ID.
Do you run background checks on your summer camp staff?
The safety of our campers is our top priority at Nature Forward. We do FBI and state background checks with fingerprints on all our summer camp staff. These include both criminal activity and sex offender registry records. We also conduct Child Protective Services background clearance checks on all employees. The Echo Hill Outdoor School with whom we partner on the Bay Quest programs also does the same background checks on their staff. Both our camp and Echo Hill are licensed by the State of Maryland as Youth Camp programs. That licensing requires that, in addition to the background checks above, we document our staff’s CPR/First Aid training, Life Guarding certification, emergency plans, health plans, staff to camper ratios, and facility safety records.
We receive a surprise inspection when camp is in session to ensure that we are meeting all the requirements. In addition, we are both licensed and inspected by our county health department to ensure our physical grounds are safe, buildings are well maintained, and food is handled properly. Please contact the camp director at 301-652-8107 if you have any questions.
Why am I charged a cancellation fee if you end up filling a spot from a waitlist?
Our cancellation fee is a uniform policy that applies to all camps (except extended camp, which has no cancellation fees) regardless of whether or not they have a waitlist. We can never predict which camps will have waitlists. If there is no penalty for withdrawing from a camp, our experience has shown that some families will “hold places” in a camp and then change their plans and withdraw at a much later date. By that time other families, who might have wanted that spot, will have made other arrangements and not be able to take advantage of the opening. Up until mid-April the penalty is only $50 a week. It goes up appreciatively after that date because it can be difficult to fill spots as summer approaches.
Are you a nut-free camp?
No, we are not nut-free and campers may bring nut-containing foods to camp. If a child has a severe allergy we will ensure that they have a safe space to eat snack and lunch with other children whose food will not trigger the child’s allergies.
Can my child walk or bike home from camp?
Yes, your child can walk or bike home from camp as long as we have a signed consent form from the parent. This form can be found and filled out at check-in on Monday. You can also email [email protected] to request the form be emailed to you. You may also add a note to your camper’s health form giving permission to walk or bike home.
What are Camp Woodend’s values?
Nature Forward is committed to creating a larger and more diverse community of people who treasure the natural world and work to preserve it. We believe that inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility are essential to that mission.
Every child deserves to enjoy a safe and welcoming environment at camp. Children are expected to follow the 5 Camp Woodend Rules: Be Safe, Be Responsible, Be Respectful, Be Kind, and Have Fun. This includes interacting respectfully with people from cultures or belief systems different from their own and refraining from bullying or intimidation.
Inappropriate or unsafe behavior, as determined by the camp staff or Director, may result in any or all of the following actions:
• Camper will be given a reminder of the rules and redirected towards more appropriate behavior.
• Camper will be given reasonable choices to modify behavior.
• Camper will take a supervised “cooling off” period away from the group.
• The camp director or the assistant camp director will meet with the child.
• Parental notification.
• Partial or total suspension of the child from camp.
Woodend Sanctuary is a 40-acre oasis just outside Washington, DC in the middle of Chevy Chase, MD. Bordering Rock Creek Park, the sanctuary contains mature woods and meadows, a pond, and an intermittent stream that provide habitat for many birds, insects, deer, rabbits, and foxes. Open lawns provide activity space, and well-maintained nature trails permit safe nature exploration.
8940 Jones Mill Road
Chevy Chase, MD 20815
For more information
about Camp Woodend