What To Expect

Can my camper be in the same unit as her friend or sister?

She may request to be in a unit with one or two special friends of similar age and abilities. To apply, friends must register for the same unit, and their registration forms must be mailed in the same envelope or faxed together. If they choose the same program, they will be placed in the same unit, but not necessarily in the same cabin. If they would like to make sure they are “buddies” at camp and sleep in the same cabin, then you should indicate that on the “place with a friend” portion of the form. We cannot guarantee placement of girls in the same camp program or more than one pair together.

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How can I communicate with my camper?

Camp Mail: Campers always enjoy receiving letters and packages while at camp. Please remember that letters should be upbeat. It’s great to write that you miss your child and ask how she’s enjoying camp. Girls also are encouraged to write home, so please remember to send self-addressed stamped envelopes with her so she can write to you. Mail service to camp is much slower than in Orange County, and we do our best to get letters and packages delivered to your camper. If you camper is due to return in four days or less, please don’t mail a letter or package. If for some reason your camper does not get her mail or package, we will return it to you. You might consider alternate ways of communicating with your camper. Hide letter last names, notes or non-food treats in your daughter’s duffel bag. Or use the “Camp Mailbox” available at check-in. Be sure to put your camper’s first and last name, program name and session, and the date you would like the letter delivered on the front of the envelope. Postage is not required.

Camp e-Mail: During the registration process, you will be able to sign up for one-way emails to your camper. Camper's emails are received by camp staff daily and delivered to the camper on the beginning of the following day. Emails created on the 4th day of your daughter's stay will be delivered to her just before she boards the bus to go home.

Packages: Care packages require special handling and delivery and may not reach your camper before leaving at the end of the session. When sending care packages, please don’t send food items as it can be disruptive if one girl in a unit receives food packages and other don’t receive any. Food in living areas can attract undesirable wildlife. Care packages are opened in the presence of her counselor and food items will be secured until the end of the session when the camper returns home

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What award has Camp Scherman received?

Local Orange County residents submitted nominations to Parenting OC's annual recognition program, and we are pleased to have received the award for "Best Overnight Camp" in 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012.

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Do you provide transportation to camp?

Yes. Girls always look forward to riding on the Camp Scherman bus with their buddies. With the help of the bus chaperones, girls learn camp songs and stories and begin planning for their stay up at camp. Bus transportation is included in your registration fees and details are provided with the camper’s confirmation packet. Buses leave promptly at 9 a.m. but please arrive early and bring your completed paperwork to allow time for check-in. If special circumstances require that you drive directly to camp, please contact the camp registrar.

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What if my daughter has special needs?

Camp Scherman is a fully-integrated camp. Staff “awareness aides” help the camper join in all of her group’s fun activities, but they are not nurses. Campers must be able to take care of their own bathing, restroom and feeding requirements. Awareness Aides can assist with reminders to use the restroom and provide simple help at meal times. Parents are asked to fill out the application form, and to provide as much information as possible about their camper’s special needs so that she can be placed in an appropriate unit. Every attempt will be made to place girls with disabilities in units with girls who are close in age. Girls in high school will be placed with older campers, usually girls in grades 7-9. Camp staff will follow up with the parents once the applications are received. 

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What kind of health facilities and procedures does the camp have?

The camp has a health center, stocked with first aid equipment and treatments. Camp counselors are safety trained, and each camping group, or unit, has a stocked first aid kit. A registered nurse or EMT is on site 24 hours a day, and if illness or injury requires additional medical attention, a doctor is on call in the local towns of Idyllwild and/or Anza. EMT and Paramedics are 5-10 minutes away and the nearest hospitals, Hemet, Palm Desert or Temecula are 45 minutes by car and ambulance.

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Does my daughter have to be a Girl Scout to attend camp?

No. We welcome all girls regardless of their scouting background. Camp Scherman is operated by the Girl Scouts of Orange County so girls who are not already registered as Girl Scouts will need to add an additional $12 fee to their camp registration. Campers will have opportunities to earn Girl Scout badges, recognitions, etc. through a variety of fun and meaningful activities.

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How are healthy meals provided to campers?

Our 2 acre camp garden provides fresh and healthy vegetables for snacks and meals. Most breakfast and dinner meals are served family style in the dining hall. Lunch is always served picnic style wherever the girls are participating in camp programs. Girls are encouraged to help plan, prepare and clean up cookout meals.

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What skills and screening are required for counselors?

Camp counselors are professionally trained, energetic and caring adults, chosen for their strong character, under¬standing of girls, love for the outdoors and special skills. Staff members receive extensive training in health, handling children’s issues and concerns, safety and emergency procedures, child leadership development, camping and outdoor skills and positive communication. Most staff members are college age and are pursuing careers in child development, psychology, teaching and recreation. Staff members are interviewed and must pass back¬ground screening.

Each staff member is required to participate in intensive pre-camp training covering topics such as age characteristics, homesickness, health and safety, communications, and Girl Scout programs.

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How do you handle campers who become homesick?

Homesickness is a natural reaction for anyone being away from home, especially for the first time. All staff members are trained to deal with this and will work with your camper on an individual basis. Camp staff will do everything possible to help girls adjust to camp life. However, resident camp staff reserves the right to send any girl home who consistently exhibits inappropriate behavior or endangers herself or others. The girl’s parent/guardian is responsible for picking her up, and fees will not be refunded.

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How do I communicate with camp by phone?

This is a growing experience for your camper, and we encourage independence and self-reliance. Campers cannot receive phone calls while they are at camp. Cellular phones do not work in the canyon where Camp Scherman is located. If we need to contact you. If your camper is injured or becomes ill at camp and needs to consult with our out-of-camp physician, our health care staff will attempt to contact the parent or legal guardian of the camper.  If we cannot talk to you in person, we will leave a message on your answering machine.  After the doctor’s visit, the health care staff will call you back to give you feedback on the child’s condition, treatment, medication, etc.  If we are unable to reach the parent or legal guardian, we will go ahead and contact your emergency phone numbers.  For this reason, it is very important for you to write down emergency contact people that you feel would be readily available and appropriate to step in if you are unreachable.

We will also contact you if there are any other concerns we have about your daughter, whether they are behavioral or informational.

Please let your child know before camp that she will not be able to call home and you are comfortable with this. It is important that you do not send your child to camp with a cell phone, as there is little or no coverage, and most important, it will send a conflicting message to other campers. We are partners in your child’s summer experience, and we hope that you will support us in making camp happy and fun for everyone.

If you need to contact us. If there is a family emergency, please contact the Girl Scouts of Orange County at 949.461.8800.  The offices are open Monday through Thursday from 8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.  When the Center is closed, a 24-hour message service will relay your message and put you in contact with the proper person.

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Do you permit camp visitors?

No. Camp visitors ARE NOT PERMITTED during resident camp.

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Who do we contact if we must pick up our daughter before the end of her session?

Please call the Girl Scout Council to verify your arrival.  For your daughter's safety, you will be asked to show proper identification.  She will only be released to the parent/guardian whose signature appears on the registration and medical forms.  If someone else will be picking her up, this must be verified through the council office.

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How do you respond to emergencies?

Camp Scherman staff frequently contact the council office each day to ensure the smooth operation of camp. In the unlikely event of an emergency, camp staff will follow documented emergency procedures. If you have other questions about Camp Scherman or Girl Scouting, please contact our camp registrar at 949.461.8844 or ejohnson@GirlScoutsOC.org.

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Is Camp Scherman accredited by the American Camp Association?

Yes. ADA accreditations your assurance that the camp you choose has been evaluated and is nationally recognized in every area of operation and management. To be accredited, a camp must show compliance with more than 200 pages of stringent standards. In addition, Camp Scherman follows the strict camping standards of the Girl Scouts of the USA and meets or exceeds the standards of the Riverside Health Department.

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