March 22, 2020 

Dear Holston Camper Families,

I want to address the recent health concerns related to the coronavirus (COVID-19).

The safety and health of campers, retreat guests and staff is always the highest priority at Holston Presbytery Camp and Retreat Center. We have a long history of taking great care to develop and maintain practices to provide participants with safe and high quality experiences. Holston’s staff members are working hard to make sure that we continue to be very diligent in our cleaning practices and this includes planning for a variety of communicable diseases.

With the spread of COVID-19 within the United States, and particularly with the constant media coverage, we understand your concern.

While the coronavirus currently poses no immediate implications for the summer camp season, we will continue to review and revise our plan in cooperation with North Carolina State and Federal Agencies as additional COVID-19 guidance is provided.

An important part of this situation is to not react in fear. As Christians, our first response should be toward one another. Create a plan in case of exposure. Check in on others. Consider others when you are making plans to be in public places. Observe social distancing policies. Care for your family, neighbors, and self.

We will also continue to keep you updated as new information becomes available. If you have any concerns or questions, please contact the HPCRC Office and we will be happy to speak with you. The office phone number is (844) 465-7866.

We believe all children need to be outside, unplugged, and having fun, faith-forming experiences at camp this summer. If you are considering registering for summer camp, please do so. We also understand families need to make their own best decisions. Should you decide you need to keep your child at home this summer, know that Holston offers a no-hassle, 100% refund of summer camp fees.

Of course, if you are cancelling and would like to make a full or partial donation, we are happy to send you a letter of acknowledgement of the donation to a 501 (c) 3. Our camp is dependent on the beneficence of its followers.

As summer camp approaches, we will review and publish our policy related specifically to summer camp following the recommendations from local, state and federal agencies.

We are looking forward to a successful, exciting, and fun-filled summer!

Love always,

Jim Austin, Director

BEST PRACTICE FOR OVERALL HEALTH:

The CDC recommends these measures to reduce the spread of germs and avoid illness, including:

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Say the Lord’s prayer while washing. (After Lent you will have a new spiritual practice!) If soap and water are not available, use alcohol based hand sanitizers.
  • Avoid touching eyes, mouth, and nose with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with individuals who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick. This is the simplest and best response you can make for others in your community. The CDC recommends that individuals remain home for a minimum of 24 hours after you no longer have a fever, vomiting, or diarrhea.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then immediately discard the tissue in the trash. 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • WHAT WE DON’T YET KNOW:
  • We don’t know if coronavirus will act like the flu or cold and slow down with warmer weather.
  • We don’t yet know how to prevent it (vaccination).
  • We don’t yet know why it isn’t especially active in children.
Women’s Spring Retreat

To ensure the well-being of our Holston family, we have had to make the difficult decision to cancel the upcoming women’s retreat on April 17-19. We will host a fall women’s retreat in early November! We are in conversation with retreat leaders about how we can continue to provide spiritual rejuvenation and connection for our community. Stay tuned!

POLICY REGARDING RETREAT GROUPS

Dear Friends of Holston Center,

We understand the fear and uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 Virus. Our responsibility is to provide for the benefit and well-being of our guests. To this end, we are canceling all retreats for the month of April. We will remain compliant with future state and federal guidelines as they apply to the health anbd safety of all people.

If you have a retreat planned, we would encourage you to call our office to reschedule your event. Our existence depends on providing future reservations for retreat groups. Our financial situation is very tenuous. We are a ministry of the love of God, not a for-profit entity.

If you must, we will refund your current balance in full due to this adverse situation. We would simply ask that you please make plans to come back in the future. We would also be very grateful for any donations you could make to Holston Camp and Retreat Center. See the page HERE.

If you have questions or concerns, please call our office at 844-465-7866.

On behalf of Peggy, Richard, Mitchell and me, we appreciate your faith in our mission and we pray for the health of the world with compassion and grace for all.

Blessings and much love always,

Jim