It’s a mixed blessing when the sun has come out in full force. With temperatures some times spiking in the summer, it’s important to keep kids safe.
We love a sunny day at camp, but more recently we've experienced more heat than we're used to in the UK. Don’t worry, we’re well prepared for this and kids are set to have a great time with us in a safe environment.
We’ve got some top tips to keep kids safe in the sun. If they’re joining us, we also have some advice for preparing kids for camp and information on how we’ll keep them safe.
Top sun safe tips for parents
We all look forward to sunny summer days and kids love the chance to enjoy the warm weather. When temperatures rise along with the strength of the sun, it’s really important to protect children from sun damage and heat exposure.
The NHS guidance is to
spend time in the shade between 11am and 3pm
make sure you never burn
cover up with suitable clothing and sunglasses
take extra care with children
use at least factor 30 sunscreen
Children should always use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30, or higher, to protect from UVB. UVA damage is also critical. Make sure you choose a sunscreen with at least a 4 star rating.
There are lots of different products available at different price points. It’s not always the most expensive option that offers the best protection. Look out the UVA start rating on the bottle which confirms it meets the EU standard.
Check the expiration date. We all have the half empty bottles knocking about the house, but most sunscreens have a shelf life of 2-3 years.
Make sure you’re applying enough sunscreen. Apply in the morning before going out and top up throughout the day to keep skin protected.
We know it’s hot, but appropriate clothing is a great barrier to the sun and should also help them to keep cool.
First and foremost, having a wide-brimmed hat is great for shading the face, neck and ears. Lightweight clothes are ideal to keep them cool. It’s best to wear a long-sleeved top and trousers or long skits in close weave fabrics that don’t let the sunlight through, if possible. Natural fabrics such as cotton are breathable and will keep kids cooler than synthetic fabrics.
It’s important to protect delicate eyes in the bright sunlight. Sunglasses with wrap around lenses are ideal and check they have the CE Mark and British Standard Mark 12312-1:2013E.
Take extra care
Some of us are more vulnerable to the sun than others. Be especially careful if;
have pale, white or light brown skin
have freckles or red or fair hair
tend to burn rather than tan
have many moles
have skin problems relating to a medical condition
are only exposed to intense sun occasionally (for example, while on holiday)
are in a hot country where the sun is particularly intense
have a family history of skin cancer
Tips to deal with sunburn
Hopefully, by following this advice, you won’t have to deal with sunburn. But we know sometimes this can happen.
If your child (or you!) gets sunburn, sponge the sore skin with cool water and apply an after sun cream. Age-appropriate painkillers will ease the pain and help to reduce inflammation. It’s important to keep out of the sun until all signs of redness are gone.
How to prepare for camp
If your child is joining us on a hot summer day, please follow our advice to prepare them for camp:
Apply sunscreen in the morning before they arrive
Pack a bottle of sunscreen in their bag (to reapply throughout the day)
Bring them in with a refillable water bottle
Wear comfortable, lightweight clothing
Pack a hat for them to wear during outdoor activities
How we keep kids safe in the sun
We’re fully aware of the dangers of the sun. We will be well prepared for particularly hot weather at our summer camps.
Timetables will be designed with the weather in mind. On hot days, we ensure that activities are balanced to offer a mix of indoor and outdoor sessions. Children won’t be outside in hot sunshine for too long and we’ll make sure they have respite in shaded areas.
There will be extra time put aside throughout the day for children to regularly refill their water bottles. We know how important it is to keep hydrated, especially on hot days. Our staff will also make sure that sunscreen is topped up during the day.
Camp Managers will keep a close eye on each group and the activity sessions, offering advice and support. We also have dedicated first aiders on camp to be available if ever needed.
In extreme hot temperatures, activities will only take place indoors and will be less energetic with plenty of time to rest in between sessions.