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mrkstvns

How do camps accommodate girl troops?

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Most of the BSA summer camps that I'm aware of seem to have taken girl troops in stride. No big deal.  A girl troop can go to camp like any other troop, they just register and do whatever the boys do (but with female leadership requirements).

A few camps seem to stress over it.

I've heard of one large council-run scout reservation of several camp areas that isolates the girls in their own area.

I've heard that the Heart of America council has a "Girls only week" at Bartle Scout Reservation. I wonder how that works .... are girl troops required to go during that one (and only that one) week?  Or can they sign up for any week of the summer, but if they choose a "girls only" environment, it's provided?  

Does your council or camp do something to treat the girl troops differently than the boy troops?

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At my local councils summer camp each bath/shower house is shared between 2 campsite that will hold about 40.  In the campsite my troop was located during summer camp was shared by 4 different troops.  All female troops were placed in 2 campsites that shared the same bath/shower house.  Everything else stayed the same.

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Posted (edited)

Our council camp's shower/bath facilities are all individually doored with no common areas.  They added some changing rooms at the pools, but I believe that had already been on a list of planned improvements to accommodate the increasing number of female leaders at camp.  There were no restrictions on weeks or campsites.

I haven't had a chance yet to ask how many female only troops we were expecting.

Edited by T2Eagle

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Posted (edited)

We went out of our council to camp last week. They seemed not very well prepared for females as some other camps are.

At this time one bathroom/bathhouse had a wooden sign you flip Males Only/Females only and same with the changing rooms at aquatics. At a leaders meeting they gave the leaders instructions to talk with the scouts about knocking and not flipping signs while someone is in there. We wish they had dedicated male/female facilities like some camps do. The latrines have locking door stalls and so does another bath house so no male/female separation.

Here was a huge issue we had. I attended as leader of our male troop. We had 1 girl from our linked female troop go provo. She was registered in advance, both male troop and female troop leaders went to the camp leaders meeting 10 days prior to camp start date where the provo girl was discussed in detail since she has a disability as well. We were told there would be a female staff member in provo. Did not happen. No female staff. There was 1 other girl there, but her dad was with her so she was ok. Serious YPT/female rules questions were raised not by us because we were not aware of the issue until after dinner. Other scout leaders in provo were concerned. 

We were told that National was involved, but that there is no set policy on provo summer camp staff. In the end the girl slept with female staff in a cabin and spent the days/ate with the provo troop. Not sure how we feel about that... was she lucky because she got a behind the scenes look at camp staff, had plenty of one on one mentoring, sleep in air conditioning OR did she miss out on a true camp experience. Our biggest problem, that took staff 2.5 days to figure out, was who was responsible for her in case of an emergency situation/assembly, staff or provo? In the end they decided to bring her directly to the main office during an emergency assembly.

Edited by karunamom3
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On 7/12/2019 at 9:57 AM, mrkstvns said:

Does your council or camp do something to treat the girl troops differently than the boy troops?

Just finished a week of summer camp.  It was a non-issue.  Yes there are some challenges due to the transition.  But program and the experience of summer camp had no change.

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The purveyors of shower houses with individual rooms (toilet sink and shower in each) are slinging their wares at our scout reservation, and another that I just visited.

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Our camp had two shower houses.  One had 8 individual stalls and 30 minute wait times.   The other had two separate group shower areas (male youth/male adults).   Those were routinely empty (Only once did I ever hear a shower going on the youth side).   I even suggested to some youth who were waiting in a long line for the individual showers that the other shower house was open... thinking back now, that could have sounded a bit creepy.

In any case, many youth today seem especially self conscious and have no desire to use the traditional group shower areas.  I agree, I expect every camp will be moving to the individual stalls in the future.

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2 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

 I even suggested to some youth who were waiting in a long line for the individual showers that the other shower house was open... thinking back now, that could have sounded a bit creepy.

Boys often have the same concerns as you about the possibility of appearing a bit creepy. When given a choice between individual shower stalls and group showers, many boys will choose to wait for the individual showers, even if they are not embarrassed to use the group showers. They are concerned that other people might see it as suspicious or creepy that they choose to use the group showers. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

In any case, many youth today seem especially self conscious and have no desire to use the traditional group shower areas.  I agree, I expect every camp will be moving to the individual stalls in the future.

This doesn't appear to be true at schools that continue to use group showers rather than individual stalls. Boys don't seem to mind the group showers so long as everyone else is using them. 

I agree that scout camps will all be switching to individual stalls. It isn't necessary, but it is the way things are going.

Edited by David CO
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On 7/12/2019 at 10:57 AM, mrkstvns said:

Does your council or camp do something to treat the girl troops differently than the boy troops?

Our council camp is being very welcoming to the girls.  Already had individual shower stalls with real doors that locked and a private dressing area inside the stall.

Only difference has been how provo campers are being handled.  So far the (very few) provo girls are being placed with girls troops who are at camp that week and who have offered to host them.   When our troop was at camp, the single provo girl stayed in the campsite with us and did everything with our troop.  This worked fine. 

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I'm in my 40s and I have NEVER, even as a small child, been comfortable with group shower areas. I try not to project my creepy factor onto my kids when they hose off after swimming. They keep their swimsuits on during shower (I honestly want the chlorine rinsed out of their swimsuits as much as I want it rinsed out of their hair) but I find it really creepy that adult naked women will stand in the shower and talk to my kids. I applaud the move to single-stall showers. It doesn't cost that much to put up barriers and shower curtains. Yes, cleaning takes longer, but I bet Scouts will be more than willing to take up the extra cleaning duty as a fair exchange for privacy in the shower.

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On 7/15/2019 at 5:49 AM, qwazse said:

The purveyors of shower houses with individual rooms (toilet sink and shower in each) are slinging their wares at our scout reservation, and another that I just visited.

Our local camp is upgrading over the last few years to the individual bathrooms.  It makes life better for all.  The boys appreciate it too.

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Our council camp has a shower house with 2 each of individual locking showers, toilets, and urinals in each campsite.  Usually a bit of a wait, but not too bad.

We just did an out of council camp where we had a permanent 2 seat outhouse in each campsite, and 2 sets of shower houses with 18 individual shower rooms.  I did not have to wait for one all week, but it was about a half mile from our campsite. 

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In my youth, there was a life guard attended spring fed swimming hole at summer camp where skinning dipping allowed.

I guess this word "creepy" came from adults because I've never heard anything like it from scouts taking group showers. I also don't remember hearing anything like it when adults showered with scouts back in the day, but times are different. Hey, what about trans scouts and adult leaders? Still, I find it ironic that the only adult leaders I've seen get in trouble at scout camps are women leaders (moms) walking into the youth showers to check on their scouts. There is not doubt in my mind they were just following their motherly instinct of checking on her chicks, but they learned quickly the seriousness of the rules. When one of our female leaders heard about the scandal, she wondered how they would have felt about a dad checking in on a girl scout troop. Of course those words are closer to home now. I would not be surprised that the required facility changes for girls will push a few camps to be sold. These things are very expensive and some councils can't afford it.

Barry

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2 hours ago, Liz said:

I'm in my 40s and I have NEVER, even as a small child, been comfortable with group shower areas. I try not to project my creepy factor onto my kids when they hose off after swimming. They keep their swimsuits on during shower (I honestly want the chlorine rinsed out of their swimsuits as much as I want it rinsed out of their hair) but I find it really creepy that adult naked women will stand in the shower and talk to my kids. I applaud the move to single-stall showers. It doesn't cost that much to put up barriers and shower curtains. Yes, cleaning takes longer, but I bet Scouts will be more than willing to take up the extra cleaning duty as a fair exchange for privacy in the shower.

I think it has always been the case that girls were less comfortable with group showers than the boys. 

 

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