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Short-Term Camps

Starting January 1, 2021, all BSA councils will begin using the National Camp Accreditation Program (NCAP) to authorize and evaluate short-term camps. These standards are to ensure that our events are safe and quality programs. You have probably been applying some version of these standards to your short-term camp events already; using these standards will provide consistency across events and provide guidance so you can continue offering quality, safe, and fun events.

NOTE: this does not affect den, patrol, or unit-based overnight camping.

What is a Short-Term Camp?

It’s any council- or district-organized event with overnight camping of one, two, or three nights (camping more than three nights is a long-term camp; no overnight camping is a day camp.) This includes events such as Camporee, Webelos Woods, OA Assembly, MEGA Training, BALOO Training, Wood Badge, etc.

Short-Term Camp Committee

Our council has established a committee to help make implementing the NCAP Short-Term Camp Standards easier. This committee will provide training to help you learn and comply with this new program.

Your First Steps

The immediate action we need from you is to DESIGNATE A SHORT-TERM CAMP ADMINISTRATOR. Your Short-Term Camp Administrator MUST complete training before any 2021 short-term camp events can start their planning. Please reply with the name and contact information for your Short-term Camp Administrator immediately to Robert “Bob” Oatman at [email protected].

We need at least one named person for every district or large reoccurring event. The Short-Term Camp Administrator’s primary responsibility is to ensure that all planned short-term camps comply with the NCAP Short-Term Camp Standards. This person should not be the event coordinator, but they will work closely with the event.

The requirements for the Short-term Camp Administrator are:

  • Be at least 21-years-old and a registered Scout volunteer.
  • Have a current NCAP Short-Term Camp Administrator National Camping School Certification.

Responsibilities of the Short-Term Camp Administrator include:

  • Walking the short-term camp location to ensure that it is appropriate for the event and meets all standards.
  • Ensuring that paperwork is completed and any written BSA approvals are completed.
  • Confirming that facilities and program are safe and in good order before starting the event.
  • Confirming that appropriate health, safety, and sanitation provisions are made.
  • Ensuring that all activities at the short-term camp comply with the applicable BSA National Camp Standards and other BSA policies such as Guide to Safe Scouting.

We all want to ensure that our 2021 Scouting activities are quality, safe, and fun! The NCAP Short-term Camp Standards are a tool to help us achieve that goal.

Have a question about Short-Term Camps?

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