COVID-19 Update: March 20, 2020 **Summer Lottery Announcements Postponed**
We hope that you are staying healthy and doing your best to get your daily dosage of outdoor time.
We understand that information about the current pandemic is changing day-by-day and the future of summer programming is still uncertain. After careful consideration, we have decided to delay the announcement of our summer lottery results.
Of course, we want WYP to run this summer but we do not know if that will happen. Because of many variables, we cannot say when, where, who or if WYP will operate the camps it had originally offered.
Due to these variables we are postponing the summer camp lottery results until we know what summer holds in the state of California.
We will keep you apprised of our future plans as they develop.
If you want to get regular emails from us to inspire outdoor time during this period, click below to opt into our special “go outside and play” newsletter.
Please reach out if you have any questions and/or just to say hello!
- Print Out Schedule: It can be helpful to first print out our Schedule at Glance to decide your first-choice camps (return to top of page for link)
- We recommend using Chrome or Firefox browsers
- Begin Registration: This link will take you into our registration system. If you are a returning user, log in. New users should create an account.
- If you are adding new participants, click on the “Contact and Household” tab at the top of the page. Make sure to enter the correct number of children and their current grade level
- Current participants already enrolled in our online system will not need to follow this step but we do suggest updating and reviewing any relevant household information to make sure it is up to date.
- Continue to the “Register Programs” page
- From the drop-down on the top of the page, select “summer”
- Select programs to waitlist then scroll down to the bottom of the page and continue to the “Review and Pay” page
- List varying levels of preference for each kid in each camp that they are waitlisted for
- The more camps that you waitlist for, the better chance we have of finding placement.
- In “Payment Notes” leave a note about your payment preferences (we will not charge you until you are awarded a summer camp) and where to request a scholarship deeper than the one our system has calculated for you.
- In “Other Preferences” leave any notes about who you would like to participate with and the amount of weeks you are hoping to join for this summer (we will do our best to accommodate for friends and siblings)
- Under payment options, select “join waitlist.” You MUST select “join waitlist” and check out to be placed on a summer waitlist.
- After checking out, our system will take you to the “Payment Receipt” page
- Check your email and make sure you have received a confirmation email.
What are the dates for the 2020 summer camp weighted lottery?
Lottery sign-ups for Summer 2020 FOR ALL FAMILIES (including school-year families) run Feb. 19-Mar 4. Lottery results will be announced via email on March 20th, 2020. Entries received after the weighted lottery announcements will not be included in the first round of lottery. However, a lot of things shift after the first round of placements, so there is still a good chance you can get a spot after Round 1. Round 2: To be included in Round 2, complete registration between March 5th and April 1st. Round 2 lottery results announced via email on April 15th. Round 3: After April 1st families may continue to join waitlists. Starting May 1st, open spots will be filled via an email that goes out to everyone on the waitlist for a given age group, regardless of when they submitted registration.
How do I sign up for the weighted lottery?
How does the "weighted" lottery work? What factors affect our chance of getting a spot in a WYP summer camp?
Families who participate in our school year programs receive PRIORITY REGISTRATION (see below).
Our weighted lottery gives priority in the following order:
- No outstanding balances from past sessions (including for school year families)
- Family is participating in school year 2019/20 programs
- Balancing for demographic diversity (gender identity, ethnicity, special needs — we prioritize under-represented groups)
- Participation in past summer camps
What happens if I miss the first round of lottery?
You still have a great chance of getting summer camp spots if you miss Round 1 — especially if you have flexibility in your schedule. Any family (including school-year families) who registers after Round 1 lottery period will be considered for Lottery Round 2 or later, for the general waitlist. (see above FAQ about Weighted Lottery)
- Join the waitlist for all sessions for which your children have availability.
How many camps can my child participate in this summer?
Does ability to pay does affect my chances of participating in a summer camp?
Thanks to our community-wide fundraising efforts, we offer scholarships of many levels, and our weighted lottery does NOT prioritize those who can pay full price. We simply ask you to state your family’s income as part of the application process, if you are requesting a scholarship. However, once our generous scholarship fund has been allocated, we do place full-paying families into any remaining spots.
Groups of 12 children meet every day at various spots throughout Santa Barbara, Goleta and Carpinteria. Camps for our youngest campers (4-5 years old) stay at their meet up location. Camps for ages 6 and up travel in passenger van to different local resource-rich locations each day, such as creeks, beaches and open spaces. Every program has 12 kids and 2 staff/1 volunteer to achieve a 4:1 ratio of children to adults.
Our staff create an environment of respect and safety for your children, so they are free to explore their own curiosities outdoors while deepening their connection to the natural world.
What does a typical day of summer camp look like?
Each program begins with a thanksgiving circle where we have an opportunity to give gratitude and check in with each other. We move onto something active that gives kids an opportunity for body awareness, animal understanding, and/or tactile exploration with skulls, tracks and other mysteries of nature. Once we are all warmed up we pile in our 8 or 15-passenger vans for an adventure in the local area. Places we go include local beaches, creeks, the Santa Ynez River, Lizard’s Mouth and the Pines (East Camino Cielo). Learn more about Places We Go).
Each day there are elements of inspiration, skill focus, wandering, exploring, celebration, and storytelling. An example of a day in camps is:
9 am – Thanksgiving Circle
9:30 – Blindfolded drum stalk
10 am – Head for Rattlesnake Canyon in a 15 passenger van
10:30 – Creek wander discovering tracks, plants, birds
Noon – Lunch, story
1:00 pm- Hike down the trail stopping at any swimming holes
3 (or 4) pm – Back to park for closing circle and story sharing
What does my child need to bring?
Please pack lightly — kids carry their own packs. We ask that each day your camper shows up with:
1. Backpack (preferably with padded shoulders and not too big)
2. Bathing suit (for girls consider a two piece or swim shorts and rash guard–they are easier for using wilderness bathrooms)
3. Healthy lunch (low sugar) and plenty of snacks. Kids get hungry on our programs!
4. Water (minimum of 32 oz. reusable water bottle). We’ll refill during the day.
5. Sunscreen. Please apply before arriving. We’ll re-apply during the day.
6. Clothes that can get dirty. Please have children arrive dressed in layers because SB’s summers start cold and foggy and burn off to be hot later in the day.
7. Shoes that can get wet–water shoes or water sandals work great!
8. Small towel (no bigger than the length of the child’s body), sarongs work great.
9. Hat (optional, but if your child will wear it, they are a wonderful way to keep out the sun).
Lastly, we encourage parents to LABEL everything and toys & electronics need to stay at home.
The rest is provided by our staff and all that surrounds us!
How much food should I pack?
More than you would think, is the typical answer. We play hard outside and children get hungry. At least for the first day, pack more than you would for a typical school day and then talk to your child after camp to determine whether they need more or less. We’ve also noticed that children tend to need more food as the week progresses, so keep in touch with staff and your children to see how food supplies are doing.
Can my child bring a knife?
Yes. We believe that children have inherent competence. Children using knives will have to learn our unwavering rules around knife safety, which begins with the difference between a tool and weapon and that a knife, like words, can be used as both. We then go into how to create the space for using a knife and how to properly care for a knife. Lastly we show our participants how to safely carve. WYP counselors provide knives to participants, when carving projects are planned. We prefer locking blade and fixed blade knives for children as it creates more success in carving. Finally, if you are going to be sending a knife with your child, please let your counselor know, so that we are sure to be supervising how/when it is being used.
Can my child come for part of the session or split the session with a friend?
Usually, no. Part of the camp experience is forming a tight group that understands one another and works together (our core value of unity). Our days build on each other and end in celebration. We believe it is important to be able to attend all days of the camp, therefore we do not allow campers to attend only part of a camp. We also do not allow two children to split a two week camp, for many of the same reasons. Some exceptions can be made, however, so speak with our Registrar for further conversation regarding your specific need.
How do I talk to my child's counselor before the start of camp?
Before camp begins, WYP will send you an email with your child’s lead staff contact information. The lead staff will also call you about 1-2 weeks before camp to check in with any needs you or your child have. If you would like to speak with them before this time, please call our offices at (805) 964-8096 and we can put you in touch with them.
Does ability to pay does affect my chances of participating in a summer camp?
Thanks to our community-wide fundraising efforts, we offer scholarships of many levels, and our weighted lottery does not prioritize those who can pay full price. We simply ask you to state your family’s income as part of the application process, if you are requesting a scholarship. However, once our generous scholarship fund has been allocated, we do place full-paying families into any remaining spots. Learn more about our pricing.
Do you have before or after care?
We understand that our 9 am start time is often difficult for working parents. Unfortunately, at this time, we do not offer before care for our summer camps. As of 2020, we do offer after care for our Bumblebees camps (ages 3-4). One idea for transportation/child care issues is to find another family to share in the joy/task of dropping off and picking up your children.
Program fees for summer camps are organized via sliding scale levels based on ability to pay.
- Program Fee: This is the actual cost of running the program for Wilderness Youth Project
- Scholarship Levels 1-6, Subsidy: For families that need financial assistance. Scholarship amounts are automatically calculated in our registration system based on the income/family size information you provide per the chart below.
If your family qualifies for a scholarship, and would like to pay above or below the amount shown for your preferred program in the “Price with Scholarship” column, you may enter a different amount on the “Review and Pay” page at the end of the registration process.
WYP has a limit of one session/week (School-year programs) or two weeks of camp (Summer camps), per child, with a scholarship below Scholarship Level 2. Additional sessions or weeks require payment of at least Scholarship Level 2.
Read even more on pricing.
Deeper Scholarship Request Policy: We are only able to grant deeper scholarships below Scholarship Level 2 for:
- up to two weeks of summer camp per child
- If a family would like to participate in more weeks of summer camp, they must pay at Scholarship Level 2.
- Each family must pay a minimum of $30/child/week.
Cancellations made 2 weeks before the start of camp will not be refunded, unless we can find a family to fill the vacant spot.