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Splash Into Water Safety on Summer Camp Trips

July 2

Wisconsin Youth Company’s summer camps are a fun tradition for many children and safety is a top priority every day — especially when water is involved. To ensure safety and meet the most current standards, Wisconsin Youth Company completes American Camp Association’s accreditation process each year, in addition to the required licensing by the State of Wisconsin. The ACA accreditation process also verifies a camp complies with 300 individual program quality and health and safety standards, offering peace of mind to both campers and their families. 

Water Safety Protocols 

Whenever summer camps involve water activities, WYC follows specific ACA requirements to guarantee a safe environment: 

  • Staff-to-camper ratio: One staff person for every eight campers 
  • Swim level groups: Campers are divided into groups based on their swim abilities. Campers enjoy level-appropriate swim activities at the pool while remaining in close proximity to their counselor. Swim groups are defined and marked clearly as white, red, yellow, green, and double green, are defined as:

    • White (non-swimmer): Camper is not allowed to go in the water, but can play in a designated area away from the water. 
    • Red (beginner): Camper has little or no swimming experience. They can enter and exit the water unassisted and put their face in water. They must stay in water no deeper than waist level at pool or beach. 
    • Yellow (intermediate): Camper can tread water for at least 20 seconds, swim with arm action and some side breathing, and have been introduced to deep water. They may swim anywhere within the designated swim area with water levels up to 6 feet deep. 
    • Green (advanced): Camper can tread water for at least one minute, swim for an extended period with arm action and side breathing, and are comfortable in deep water. They may swim in water deeper than 6 feet. 
    • Double green (advanced with springboard and deep water slides permission): Camper has advanced swimming skills, as listed for Green level. If available, they may jump off low springboards and diving platforms no greater than 1m (3.5 feet) from surface of the pool (feet first only and no flips). They may also use water slides dropping into water deeper than 6 feet. 

Additionally, all water trips are exclusively to facilities with certified lifeguards on duty, and have zero-depth entry for maximum safety. 

Learn more about summer camp programs.