A Day at Camp
Here's a typical daily schedule:
(See our note about Family Camps at the bottom)
- Wake up and get ready for an awesome day.
Test and Shots, Breakfast
- At breakfast, lunch, dinner, and bedtime snack we have "test and shots." This means that everyone tests their blood sugar, has it recorded on their chart by a counselor, decides how many carbs they want to eat, meets with the doctor who prescribes their insulin dose, and gives their insulin with the help of a nurse.
- Head over the bridge to the Dining Hall! Make sure to eat all your carbs.
Morning Games/ Activities
- We play a ton of games. Favorites include: kickball, dodgeball, tag games, and hiking.
- One carb exchange (15 grams) and protein to keep your blood sugar up while we play!
- At camp we use the carbohydrate exchange system to count carbs. For some campers this is different than how they count carbs at home. If your camper is already familiar with this system, that's great! If not, we can help them learn this different way of counting carbs.
Testing blood sugars
At camp, you can be you.
- If campers ever feel low during the day, there are counselors at every activity with a backpack of supplies. That's right, at camp campers get a break from carrying around all their own testing and treatment supplies!
- We have classes twice a week with the older campers, and three times a week with the younger campers.
- Classes include time with our camp doctor(s), dietitian(s), and nurses. We also make time for group conversation about diabetes in our lives.
Camp Clean Up
- We gotta keep camp clean and lookin' good.
Test and Shots, Lunch
- Our kitchen staff and dietitians work hard to make sure campers with food sensitivities (gluten, dairy, etc.) or preferences (vegetarian, vegan, etc.) always have enough food options to make a balanced meal.
R&R (Rest and Relaxation) and Downtime
- Believe it or not most campers actually look forward to this brief, post-lunch siesta. Campers head to their bunks to catch a few ZZZZs, write a letter, read quietly, or mind their mindfulness.
Arts and Crafts/ Storybook Hall
- Campers can choose to go to either the A&C for some creative time, or to Storybook Hall to play board games (or card games… UNO!)
- Carb up so you don't go low during swimming.
- Without a doubt the most anticipated time of day. But, if you don't like swimming, there is always a blacktop option.
Camp Store and Yard Time
- The camp store is open once a day right after swimming. Pick up some GCC gear while you're in there!
- Yard time is free time to hangout in the heart of camp. Talking, playing kickball, getting your hair braided, playing ping pong, and enjoying a diet soda from the store are some favorite activities.
The pool is a summer favorite!
The Dining Hall - Where we "eat and eat and eat!"
Test and Shots, Dinner
- Everyday at lunch and dinner we have a salad bar with carb-free foods. So, if you finish your meal but are still hungry you can fill up on veggies.
Game Time/Nightly Activity
- Every night we have a different special activity. Some examples are: night swim, capture the flag, campfire, and a camp dance (for high school and middle school weeks).
Test and Shots, Bedtime
Get Ready for Bed
- Time to head to the cabins - we have two cabins, one for boys and one for girls. Both cabins include sleeping quarters for campers, sleeping quarters for counselors, a camper bathroom, and an on-call area for counselors. There are always counselors on-call in the cabins if campers need anything.
- Good night! See you at night check.
- Two counselors in each cabin are on call for each night and responsible for night check duty. If campers need anything during the night they can wake up the on-call counselors.
- At 12am and 3am each camper has their blood sugar checked and recorded.
- Protocol dictates what action counselors take to treat low and high blood sugars.
- If campers are low they are given glucose tabs or juice, retested in 15 minutes, and given one carb (exchange) plus protein when their blood sugar is back up to help stabilize them until breakfast.
- If campers are high, protocol dictates when to test for ketones, and when a nurse or doctor should be notified. Our doctors are all volunteers, dedicating a week of their time to be at camp and on call 24 hours a day.
That's a lot of information, but as you can see we're pretty busy at camp. Daily activities vary, but the basic schedule stays the same. We aim to stay on schedule to keep test and shots and meals on time.
Family Camps are structured to give parents and campers a preview of the real thing, so they are very similar--except there are parents and caregivers around! For the adults, we provide stuff for you to do, too. Getting to know other parents is one of the best things about Family Camp for adults. Siblings without diabetes are welcome at family camps! We have a limit of four in a family in order to give as many families a chance to come as possible. Try Family Camp and you'll be one of the GCC family in no time! Learn more about Family Camps here!