YMCA shuts down 2 summer camps after counselor tests positive for COVID-19

The YMCA closed its summer camps at Lake Allatoona and Lake Burton in Rabun County after a counselor tested positive for COVID-19.
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The YMCA closed its summer camps at Lake Allatoona and Lake Burton in Rabun County after a counselor tested positive for COVID-19.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

Children are being sent home from two YMCA summer camps after a counselor tested positive for COVID-19 this week, officials said.

In a statement, a YMCA spokesperson said the organization made the difficult decision to close both Camp High Harbour locations for the summer— one on Lake Allatoona and the other on Lake Burton in Rabun County.

“The safety and well-being of our campers and staff has always been our top priority,” the statement read. “Unfortunately, we learned on Wednesday that a counselor at YMCA Camp High Harbour at Lake Burton tested positive for COVID-19.”

The counselor, who was immediately sent home after displaying symptoms, passed the YMCA’s mandated screenings and tested negative for the disease before arriving at camp, officials said.

COMPLETE COVERAGE: Coronavirus in Georgia

It’s unclear how many campers and counselors may have been exposed, but everyone was screened before summer camp began.

All fees paid by camp participants are being refunded or applied as a credit for next summer, the organization said.

“A great deal of thought and planning went into the decision to hold Camp High Harbour,” the statement read. “In preparing for camp, we collaborated with the Centers for Disease Control and the American Camp Association and followed (Georgia’s) safety guidelines and protocols. We remain committed to doing all we can to prepare the return of resident camp for the summer of 2021.”

A camper at a Forsyth County day camp also tested positive for the highly contagious virus this week. Officials with Sawnee Mountain Preserve near Cumming said the camper tested positive after taking a test required to stay overnight.

RELATED: Forsyth County reports positive COVID-19 test at summer camp

That child came into contact with 11 other campers and three staff members, Channel 2 Action News reported. Forsyth County officials said they don’t plan to shut down summer camps this year, but will take additional precautions.

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