Bully Prevention Policy
The physical and emotional safety of each and every camper and staff member is paramount to Camp Scully. We try to identify critical concerns that affect our campers and staff and we take bullying and violence in our culture very seriously.
What is Bullying?
Bullying is when one or more people exclude, tease, taunt, gossip, hit, kick, or put down another person with the intent to hurt another. Bullying happens when a person or group of people want to have power over another and use their power to get their way, at the expense of someone else. Bullying can also happen through cyberspace: through the use of e-mails, text messaging, social media, instant messaging, and other less direct methods.
Why Is It A Problem?
Campers who are bullied may not have the same potential to get the most out of their camp experience. Our leadership team addresses all incidents of bullying seriously and trains staff to promote communication with their staff and their campers so both staff and campers will be comfortable alerting us to any problems that may arise during their camp experience. Every person has the right to expect to have the best possible experience at camp, and by working together as a team to identify and manage bullying, we can help ensure that all campers and staff have a great summer at Camp Scully.
What Are We Doing About It?
Camp Scully runs an anti-bullying program that is aimed at taking appropriate steps towards managing this problem. Although we have always made a conscious effort to prevent bullying in our camp community, bullying itself has transformed into more than its traditional definition. We now try to stop bullying behavior with different tools and techniques that will help us prevent such behavior.
At Camp Scully bullying is inexcusable, and we have a firm policy against all types of bullying. Our Camp philosophy is based on our mission statement which ensures that every camper has the opportunity to develop socialization skills in a natural environment by accepting themselves and others. We work together as a team to ensure that campers gain self-confidence, make new friends, and go home with great memories.
How Can Parents Help?
We encourage parents to let us know about any bullying concerns you may have for your child either in person or in any off-season, camp-related emails, instant messages, or text-messages that may have led to exclusion or meanness towards your child by somebody else from camp. We want to ensure that this problem can be managed by a strong partnership between our camp and you. If you have any feedback for us that you think would be helpful, we would appreciate hearing from you.
Camp Scully Staff Training on Bully Prevention
BULLYING is any intentional hurtful act, committed by one or more persons against another. Bullying occurs when there is an imbalance of power between a bully and a victim. The main types of bullying include:
- punching, hitting, shoving, stealing personal things, or getting into someone's personal space when asked not to.
- name calling, hurtful teasing, taunting, unwanted nicknames, gossiping
- exclusion, humiliation, blackmailing, manipulating friendships
Who are the "bullies"? Bullies are often smart, popular, well-liked, and have good social skills; they may look like leaders and be liked by counselors and other campers, but bullies lack empathy. The "victims" on the other hand often show some vulnerability that makes them easy targets. As a counselor, you need to be aware of those children who may be left out or have a difficult time fitting in or making friends. You also will also have to discuss empathy with the bullies by pointing out how their actions are hurting someone else.
As a counselor, your role is to include everyone and create a cabin that is accepting of everyone: a challenging but not impossible task. You need to discuss camper rules and model the behavior that you ask them to follow. Let campers know that bullying is unacceptable and won't be tolerated. Do not play favorites with some campers since that would show them that it is okay to "exclude” others. Bullying usually occurs in places when counselors are not around, so it is important to make bullying a regular topic of discussion with your campers at the beginning of week and several times during the week, so they know you take it seriously.
When a counselor observes bullying of any kind, they must intervene by stepping in and separating the children involved. Support the victim, and report any bullying behavior to your leadership team immediately. Teach your campers to be a real "caring” community and to let you know when they see someone left out, teased, or upset by someone else. Teach campers the difference between reporting: getting kids out of danger and into safety and tattling: telling on others with the intent to get someone in trouble. When a camper reports that he or she is being picked on, support him or her and keep an eye on the situation.
When you model to your campers how to be proactive about bullying by stepping in to help another camper or find a counselor when there is a bullying problem, you have done a great job! Campers follow your actions much more than they follow your words. Make camp a place where everyone feels valued by how you bring everyone together.