Dovercourt Half Day Camps

summer 2020 instead-of-camp programs


Modified Summer Children’s Day Camp Programs, July – August 2020

Honey, we shrunk our camps!

This new, shorter version of our day camp programs will begin on July 6 and will be offered for 8 weeks, with additional programs being added through the summer depending on local public health regulations and government limitations. At this time, half-day camp programs (3 hours) will be offered to children who have just finished grade 1 (6.5yrs old) to 12yrs old. Campers who were already registered in camp can take advantage of a 48-hour priority registration period for the week that they were registered for. 

How will it work?

Rather than offering full-day care, these programs will offer children a half-day program where they are safe and cared for, with an emphasis on fun, creativity, activity, and socialization. Three program times per day provides an opportunity for more than 100 children per week, and more than 30 part-time seasonal staff, while following all necessary local and provincial guidelines for Day Camps, including groups of no more than 10. Each group will include two staff and no more than 8 children and each “bubble” of 10 will not cross paths with any other group.

All programs run Monday – Friday and start at $185/week

Programs will continue to be added and adjusted depending on provincial and local health regulations. Additional half-day, and/or full-day programs that may be added as the summer progresses include off-site programs such as Canoeing, Paddleboard, Rafting, and Biking. All additional programs will follow the maximum group size of 10 and a 1:5 staff ratio.

Important program info

Drop off and Pick up locations:

  • Exact drop off/pick up locations and line ups will be well-marked when arriving on site.
  • Managers will be present to supervise drop off and pick up and to help direct parents and campers
  • Each group will have its own entrance and exit directly to their room, and a designated washroom.
  • Parents will not be permitted to enter the facility and will be signing their child in at the door directly to their Group Leader.

Health & Safety:

  • Campers and staff will be screened prior to arriving on site. The completion of an online questionnaire is required at the time of registration and another one may be requested prior to the program start.
  • Those who have indicated that they or a member of the same household has travelled outside the country in the past 14 days will not be permitted into the program.
  • Campers or staff who are exhibiting symptoms of illness may not be permitted into the facility. Those who exhibit signs or symptoms of illness during the program will be isolated from the group and sent home immediately. Others in the group will be notified immediately.
  • All participants must meet the minimum age requirement of 6.5 years (grade 1). At this time, there are no camps offered for kindergarten-age children but these programs may be added as the summer progresses.
  • Children will only be permitted to register for one session each week. If a child registers for a morning program and then an afternoon program during the same week, the second registration will be cancelled by Dovercourt and that spot released to a child on the waitlist.
  • Children will be asked to not register with any other organization within 14 days of their participation at Dovercourt. For the safety of the entire community, it will be important that a child does not attend the evening session at Dovercourt, after spending the day in another program or summer camp.

Program Details:

  • After-Breakfast Camps will run from 8:45-11:45am. After-Lunch Camps will run from 12:45-3:45pm. After-Supper Camps will run from 4:45-7:45pm. Each camp will have its own campers and staff, so that no child is exposed to another child from another time block, or another group.
  • Items from home will be limited to:
    • 1 water bottle, filled to the top at the time of drop off
    • 1 healthy snack in an easy-open container
    • Sun hat, and one bottle of sunscreen that the child is comfortable applying themselves. Leaders will assist using verbal cues only.
      All items must be labelled with the child’s full name. NO other items will be permitted in the group’s activity space, unless deemed appropriate and/or necessary by Management.
  • Each group will have one designated Group Leader and one designated Activity Leader. Each team of 2 will work together to ensure a safe, high-quality program for each child.
  • Each 2.5-hour camp will include indoor activities, outdoor activities, and playground time (pending City’s approval and following specific disinfecting guidelines between groups). Swim times may be added throughout the summer.

Registration Details:

Those with priority registration who were already registered for summer camp with Dovercourt will have 48 hours advanced access prior to registration being open to the broader public. Those who have signed up for this priority registration will receive notice by email. 

Before registration, please note:

  • Registration will be available online only. Please ensure you have a complete and accurate family account.
  • For this unusual and limited camp program, we are temporarily suspending all of our regular discounts such as Military Families, neighbours, sponsors, and staff and volunteers. Discount opportunities may resume when the building is open again with a staffed Customer Service desk.
  • All campers must meet the minimum age requirement of 6.5 years (grade 1). There are no exceptions. Without physical touch, we don’t feel well equipped to properly care for the emotional and social well-being of 4 and 5yr olds at this time.
  • Children will only be permitted to register for one session each week. If a child registers for a morning program and then an afternoon program during the same week, the second registration will be cancelled by Dovercourt and that spot released to a child on the waitlist. There will be no exceptions.
  • Children will be asked to not register with any other organization within 14 days of their Dovercourt Day Camp. For the safety of the entire community it will be important that a child does not attend the evening session at Dovercourt, after spending the day in another program or summer camp.

Registration dates

Program DatesRegistration Begins OnlineWho Can Register
July 6-10Monday, June 15, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for July 6-10
Wednesday, June 17, 8:00amEveryone
July 13-17Monday, June 22, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for July 13-17
Wednesday, June 24, 8:00amEveryone
July 20-24Monday, June 29, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for July 20-24
Wednesday, July 1, 8:00amEveryone
July 27-31Monday, July 6, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for July 27-31
Wednesday, July 8, 8:00amEveryone
August 4-7Monday, July 13, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for August 4-7
Wednesday, July 15, 8:00amEveryone
August 10-14Monday, July 20, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for Aug 10-14
Wednesday, July 22, 8:00amEveryone
August 17-21Monday, July 27, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for Aug 17-21
Wednesday, July 29, 8:00amEveryone
August 24-28Tuesday, August 4, 8:00amThose who have priority registration for Aug 24-28
Thursday, August 6, 8:00amEveryone

Questions & Answers

No. To minimize risk of exposure and ensure proper management should a case be suspected, the ministry of health has strongly urged organizations to keep groups inside of one “bubble”. For this reason, we are following the recommendation to keep each group limited to only those 10 people for the required minimum 5 days. For the safety of each child, we are strongly recommending that each participant does not enroll in any other programs during that week. Should there be a possible or confirmed case of COVID by someone in your child’s group, this will drastically limit the potential for contact and spread in the community.

Given the new world that children are facing and learning to cope in, we feel that children who have completed grade 1, or 6.5yrs old are far more capable of managing independently and socially than children who had just begun kindergarten. Without touch, we do not feel properly equipped to help children manage on their own, especially with things like accidents, self-care, and applying sunscreen. For programs for 4-5yr olds we highly recommend that parents look to other experts on how to care for our youngest, and most vulnerable campers like ECEs, and licensed child care centers. We look forward to seeing all of our 4-5yr olds campers in 2021 for a very positive first-camp experience.

We will be following the provincial and local health recommendations and updating PPE policies as things progress. At this time, masks will be optional for participants and staff. We recommend that children who are comfortable wearing them to bring their own, but wearing masks will not be enforced by staff, nor will staff be assisting children with their masks. The Ministry of Health has recommended that any staff or participant wear a mask if or when they need to go outside of their “bubble”. While we value the recommendation that wearing a mask is always better than not, we also recognize a significant value in children being able to see their leader’s facial expressions. Those who have met some of our camp leaders know how quickly a big smile from them transfers directly to the heart of the child.

Children exhibiting symptoms will be removed from the group and will wait with a leader to be picked up by a parent. Parents of the other children in the group will be phoned immediately and the situation will be assessed from there with the assistance of Public Health Authorities. Should there be immediate cause for concern, the program may be cancelled for the duration of that week, and participants asked to self-isolate according to OPH recommendations.

Our approach to getting kids back together and outside and active this summer is less about providing full-day care, and much more about offering as many opportunities for kids to have fun sports and recreation activities as possible. For this reason, we are offering three half-day camp sessions that will be jam packed (no filler games) and very full with activity. With many other options in the city for parents who require a longer day, we feel that we can offer a unique alternative for families who may require just partial days. Please check out the City’s summer camp guide for a full day, 8am-5pm option.

If your child was registered in one of our original summer camps, you should have received an email with information about your refund, and a link to a registration that puts your child on the list. All you need to do once you receive that email is click on that link and book your child in. This does not register them for a program, it simply adds a membership that will allow access for the programs when online registration begins (see Registration Dates below). If you were registered for a camp, had not withdrawn or requested to be withdrawn, and have not received the link by email, please check your spam/junk mail for an email from us, and if you don’t see it, email to request that your child(ren) who were registered for a camp in the same week be registered for the priority registration list. Please state Priority Registration in the subject line.

Other camp information

Q. I received an email about camps/lessons being cancelled the week of “X” date to “Y” date. What is that about?

As of June 1st, Dovercourt has decided to cancel all summer camps and swim lessons which were scheduled to run from June 29th to September 4th. We are systematically emailing and refunding all summer camps and swim lessons week by week, beginning with programs that run June 29th, and ending with programs that run August 31st. For our full June 1st update pertaining to summer camps, please click the following link:

Q. Now that programs have been cancelled, I would like a refund for all of the camps/lessons I have purchased. 

We will be providing all clients who paid for camps and lessons with full refunds to their initial payment(s). We will be processing these refunds systematically in the coming weeks, refunding everyone who paid for camps running June 29th first, and ending with everyone who paid for camps the week of August 31st. If you paid for camps/lessons running multiple weeks, you will still be refunded one week at a time, while we work through clearing a week of programs at a time. Our goal is to have all of summer programs refunded within the next 6 weeks.

Q. I received a “Thank you for your payment” receipt by email. What is it? 

When we process a refund in our system, a receipt for that transaction is sent to the email address of the original payer. This receipt includes the original transaction made, and any refunds processed from that transaction up to that point. We will be processing refunds one week of programs at a time, so if you paid for multiple weeks of camps or lessons, you will be receiving multiple receipt emails over the coming weeks. Payments made online for programs that have not been switched will be refunded back to the original credit card or EFT information used. Payments made in person will be refunded first to account credit, and then to cheque, which will then be mailed to the address on your account. Payment made with account credit will be refunded to account credit, and payment made with subsidy will be refunded back to subsidy.  

Q. Why am I receiving my refund via cheque? 

We can only provide online refunds for online payments, and likewise, we can only provide in-person refunds for in-person payments. Because our centre is currently closed and we cannot provide in-person refunds, in order to get clients their refunds for summer programs, we will be providing cheques to the address that is currently linked to your account. 

We will do our best to respond to emails within 2-3 business days. 

Thank you, 

Dovercourt Customer Service

All prescribed medication must be kept in the original package (box/bottle, etc) including a pharmacist label indicating proper dosage instructions and the child’s name.

A medication authorization form must also be filled out and signed by a parent before any child is given medication. These forms can be printed and brought with you on the first day of camp or filled out in the Camp Office when you arrive. A form is required for all medication provided even if not administered (Epi-Pens).

View & download the Medication authorization form (PDF)

All medications must be signed into the Camp Office by a parent. At the end of the day, or end of the week, we ask that you sign it out again to ensure that we have accurate records of all medications currently stored on-site.

If your child is going off-site or on an out-trip for the day, his or her Camp Director will sign the medication out of the office and bring it with them for the day, returning it to the office again once the camp group arrives on-site.

Epi-Pens must be worn by the camper during the day in a pouch or fanny pack. Staff will not carry Epi-Pens for campers and they should not be placed in backpacks. If your child is bringing a second Epi-Pen, we will store it in the Camp Office for quick access. Please speak to Camp Office if you have any concerns or to discuss.

As a High Five® accredited organization, Dovercourt is committed to developing and delivering programs that are child-centred and reflect our values of respect, diversity and inclusion. All of our program staff are trained and certified in High Five: Healthy Child Development and our programs are evaluated regularly to ensure a high standard of quality. To learn more visit

Summer Swim lessons

We will be offering private swim lesson package of five private lessons for up to 3 participants.

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