Sunscreen Reapplication at Day Camps

I wanted to share an experience I had with my kids. They are both fair haired and fair skinned and burn at the drop of a hat. When they were little, I enrolled them in the local YMCA summer fun club. One day, they took a day trip to the beach. There was to be one counselor for every 5 children (approx. 30 or 35 kids went and there were 8 counselors). I was adamant with the counselors that the kids (they were 6 and 7 at the time) HAD TO HAVE THE SUNSCREEN PUT ON THEM AND RE-APPLIED EVERY 2 HOURS. I sent 2 bottles with each of my kids so they'd have more than enough.

They got to the beach at about 9 a.m. and stayed until about 5 p.m.

Being as young as they were and excited to get in the water, they forgot their sunscreen on the bus. The counselors told them that was too bad, they weren't going to go back and get it. They also told the kids that if they wanted sunscreen applied, they had to do it themselves.

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When I picked them up that night, I had to take them both straight to the emergency room, because they were so badly sunburned. They both spent several days in the hospital.

I won't go into what I said to the counselors and to the head of that YMCA because language like that isn't appropriate on here. But you can imagine, I'm sure. I also brought a lawsuit against them, which turned into a small class action type suit because once I got mine started, almost all the other parents joined in too.

I just wanted to post this so that everyone can be aware of things like this happening. In the years since, I've heard of similar things happening with other child day care and clubs too. So it's not just the Y, and not just this Y.

By Cricket from Parkton, NC

July 20, 20110 found this helpful

I have a small home day care, only 4 children. I give the parents a list of things to bring to leave here. One of them is sunscreen. I ask for the plastic squeeze tubes with the hole through the bottom crimped part of the container, used to hang them up in the store. I put a shoelace through the hole and tie each child's sunscreen to their belt loop or bathing suit strap. We take an alarm clock with us, a really loud one and set it for 2 hours. When it rings, we reapply sunscreen. The kids get to take turns being in charge of the clock. Hope your kids are okay, and thanks for the warning!

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July 20, 20110 found this helpful

But many times it is the Y. Also there are stories of the kids not being supervised well. I complained once about a Y day camp in a public park and I didn't even have a child in it. The "councelers" were sitting with their backs to the kids, talking to each other while the lids were trying to push each other back down the steps of a high slide. The Y has a long way to go where child care is concerned.

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July 20, 20110 found this helpful

Catastrofy (sorry if I misspelled, time for new glasses!).

It sounds like you run a very caring day care. Good for you! Bravo! This happened to my kids 30 years ago and they did get better. But not before spending time in the hospital and then at home recuperating. If I could have afforded it st the time I'd have sued that Y for everything they were worth! They had sent a list of things to bring for the kids that day including plenty of sunscreen. And I did send everything on the list. They just didn't use it. Instead they expected a bunch of excited 5-10 year olds to remember.

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July 20, 20110 found this helpful

Lilac, you're so right! I'm so glad I don't have any small kids at home anymore. If I did, there is no way in the world I'd take them to the Y!

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July 31, 20110 found this helpful

Wow, I am SO sorry to hear this happened to your children. My son worked for our towns beach camp for several years. And it was the camps policy not to allow the counselors reapply sunscreen, it was in their contract. Parents were to send sunscreen with the child to apply him/herself. It was to protect the counselors & town camp from being accused of inappropriate touching. I know, it is a sad day when we have to think this way. My son used to buy spray on sunscreen from his own meager paycheck to apply on the children because so often parents did not send it along.

God Bless.

Trish in CT

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July 23, 20130 found this helpful

That is absolutely unbelievable! I am sharing this on facebook for other parents to read. Thank you for letting us know. They are going to lose that lawsuit. How could they not go to the store and buy a bottle or two? That is awful.

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July 23, 20130 found this helpful

I am so glad that never happened to my children as I most likely would have ended up in jail for assault. I would have happily gone but your way is much better. I hope this gets the attention of everyone in whom the trust of parents is placed so it never happens to another child.

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