Big Camp News
After extensive discussions between the Big Camp and Slush leaders and the COVID Safety Project Team, it was determined at the Board meeting last night that Big Camp 2022 will be deferred three months to the April school holiday period. As such plans will commence to hold both Big Camps in the April school holidays, either side of the Easter 2022 weekend.
The proposal is for Lord Somers Camp to commence for Groupers on Saturday 9 April (with staff arriving on Friday 8 April) and conclude on Thursday 14 April, and Lady Somers Camp will commence for Groupers on Tuesday 19 April (with staff arriving on Monday 18 April) and conclude on Sunday 24 April. The Slush and Heads of Department will prepare for the two camps at the rescheduled Slush training weekends (Slushies on February 25 to 27, and Slushees on March 4 to 6). The two April Big Camps will have restricted numbers of Groupers and staff as we learn new ways of running COVID safe camps.
We know that this rescheduling decision will disappoint some and it has certainly been a difficult and complex conversation that has brought us to this point. It is however, a necessary decision given the current and ongoing uncertainty about the coming three months in Victoria. This includes the variability in community case numbers, public health restrictions and vaccination rates amongst the Grouper and Slush age groups, which have been amongst the last cohorts to gain access to vaccines.
We thank our office and camp staff, the respective leadership and Slush teams and all staff, Groupers and nominators for their responsiveness and their work to communicate about and plan for these two safe, successful and unprecedented Big Camps.
Member and Community Camps
Unfortunately, there will be no residential programs at Somers for the remainder of 2021. The Programs and Activities (PandA) Committee meet next Tuesday evening, and will subsequently engage with respective program leaders regarding the drafting of the 2022 calendar. For example, given the rescheduling of the Big Camps, the leader of Easter Camp, Stuart Douglas, will engage with interested members and regular Easter Camp attendees regarding potential venue and / or date changes.
It has been inspiring to experience the collective sense of optimism, flexibility and innovation amongst our teams of leaders as we continue to respond and adapt to the changing local circumstances. The first two decades of our association challenged the resolve of the membership, as they endured the hardships of economic depression and war. Prevailing during adversity is not new to the Somers spirit, and it continues to shine through in 2021. Already there are many creative minds and imaginations turning their attention to maximising the unexpected opportunities that are presenting themselves. We are grateful for their commitment to safety and ingenuity in their pursuit of serving others.
Until next week,