SFR Summer Staff Qualifications

IMG_2643The American Camping Association posted an article called “What Parents Want to Know that Camp Counselors Should Know”, by Karla A. Henderson, Kelly McFadden, and M. Deborah Bialescki. In this article, they address five major questions that parents want answered before sending their children to camp. These are very valid questions and I am going to break down the article into several posts so I can answer each question for Shepherd’s Fold.

The first question I’ll address is Staff Qualifications. Shepherd’s Fold Ranch staff members are 18 to 25 years old and have signed up to be a part of the Furnace, which is a discipleship training program designed to teach the value of kingdom living and how to be servant leader. We select staff members who are hungry to grow and learn, and who have a desire and willingness to serve.

Our staff members are selected through an extensive process, which includes a minimum of three references, a background check, and a personal interview. We use an accredited background screening service called Protect My Ministry to conduct a criminal, sex offender, and social background check for every staff member and volunteer at Shepherd’s Fold. No one is exempt.

The staff members arrive at camp about two weeks prior to the start of camp for staff training. During this time, staff members receive certifications for CPR, First Aid, Ropes Course, and Life Guard from qualified instructors who are certified in their respective fields. Staff members will undergo all-encompassing training of the policies and procedures for camp, including SFR’s sexual harassment policy, sexual misconduct policy, as well as fire and tornado emergency procedures. They are also taught how to handle homesickness, which is very common for campers.

Shepherd’s Fold Ranch’s motto is “A Place Called Home.” In order to keep the ‘family feel’, we do our best to keep the staff-to-camper ratio 1 to 6, which helps us keep the campers supervised at all times. There are a minimum of two staff members in every cabin. At night, our leadership staff members conduct a security check to ensure all campers are safely tucked in their beds, and also that all cabin doors and gates are locked.

The majority of Shepherd’s Fold Ranch staff members were campers at one point in time and were so impacted that they came back to be a part of the Lord impacting others’ lives. There are several who have been on staff for over five years. We are confident that our staff will meet and exceed your expectations for you and your children. See you at camp!