Youth summer camps are now open at the YMCA

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Overnight camps, along with youth sports, are now allowed to open across Texas, and one of those summer camps includes the YMCA.

The YMCA provided childcare for essential workers throughout the pandemic, so a lot of the safety changes have been happening since March.

The doors at the McWilliams YMCA location on TX-249 have opened for summer camp.

"We are reimagining what summer day camp can look like during COVID-19," said Curtis Lemieux, the executive director of youth development.

The hope is to provide a fun and safe atmosphere for students despite the pandemic.

Lemieux said they will serve about 100 teens, ages 12 to 15, and about 1,000 school-aged children between the ages of five and 11.

They will all be split between 22-day camps and nine teen camps.

This year's capacity is one-third of last summer's.

Staff have been trained on how to answer questions from kids about COVID-19, and they will be focused on having fun as well as providing support.

"We know right now that one of our focuses has to be on kid's social and emotional well-being this summer," said Lemieux.

Since many students have been out of school for months, the camps aim to provide a lot more than something to do this summer.

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