We are extremely excited to announce that Camp Pinnacle is now fully accredited by the American Camp Association (ACA)! For our year-round staff, this has been a goal for a long time, and this month we officially received word of our new accreditation. This furthers the mission of Camp Pinnacle by creating a safe, substantive, and exciting experience for both campers and staff.
The American Camp Association strives to enrich the lives of children, youth, and adults through the camp experience and is the only independent accrediting organization reviewing camp operations in the country. Their nationally recognized standards ensure the highest quality of health, program design, and, most important, a safe environment for campers and staff. Through the accreditation process, they look at emergency procedures, daily operations, camp facilities, food service, staff hiring and training, and more. The ACA accredits more than 3,000 camps nationwide, and Camp Pinnacle is thrilled to be among these elite programs.
Beginning in the fall of 2018, our year-round staff made the commitment to embark on the accreditation process, addressing the almost 700 standards the ACA had set out for us to meet. By working to meet these standards, we have improved the overall operations of Camp Pinnacle. To our delight, we learned that we were already meeting—even exceeding—the vast majority of those standards.
Once we committed to the accreditation process, we began compiling many of our policies and procedures in order to address each standard. Throughout the fall and spring, we communicated with our ACA site visitors (they came to our three-week session). The visitation process begins with a tour of camp during a normal day of programming (seeing how programs run, interviewing summer staff, visiting our health center) and concludes with discussing each of the 700 standards set by the ACA. Once the all-day visit finishes, the ACA visitors take their findings back to the board to discuss and make a final decision on the accreditation.
The accreditation process is completely voluntary but allows Camp Pinnacle to continue to be considered among the best camps in the country. By allowing the ACA to come in and sift through every detail of camp with a fine-toothed comb, we are ensuring to everyone—current and prospective families—that we believe in providing the most meaningful and impactful experience possible. Having the ACA’s stamp of approval means a great deal, and we look forward to keeping this standard of excellence for years to come through the re-accreditation process every three years.
Completing the accreditation process and reaching this great status was no surprise. We have known the caliber of our programming and our commitment to a healthy and safe camp environment for many years, but we wanted to take it to a new level. Having the ACA provide this wonderful accreditation only reinforces what we’ve known all along, we are the pinnacle of summer camps.