An interview with our summer camp’s fabulous head camp nurse MaundeyMarch 9, 2016
When your child is away from home and at summer camp for 7 weeks it’s important to know that he or she is getting all of the love, support and care they need to thrive. This is especially true when a camper is sick or has regular medical needs that require attention. Thankfully, our summer camp in NH has a world-class medical team of camp nurses and doctors who keep our kids healthy and happy all summer long.
With that in mind, I thought it was important to introduce Maundey Abrahamson, our friend and long time head nurse!
Maundy (left) and many members of our fantastic camp medical team!
So how did you and your family join our brother-sister camp community?
I actually came to K&E through the famous Adventure Dave. We have worked together for many years at Proctor Academy where I am also a nurse. Camp was looking for a new and experience member of the Camp Medical Team, and I had just finished 7 years with a camp that no longer needed a nurse so it was fate!! I had driven by K&E countless times and was always curious what it was like and suddenly here was the perfect opportunity. Little did I know what a special place it is…
Do you have any favorite aspects of life at our overnight camp?
Since I can’t name just one of my favorite things about camp, I will go with some of the top ones…
1) ACCEPTANCE – everyone is so accepting and respectful of one another for their uniqueness and individuality!
2) IT’S A SUPPORTIVE ENVIRONMENT – As a parent, I could not ask for a more supportive group of counselors. They encourage and support the campers (and each other) without being forceful. I have seen campers overcome fears and accomplish things they would never have thought they could do while spending their summers at our little overnight camp in NH.
3) BREAKOUTS – Who doesn’t like a good special event breakout!, the suspense and excitement is tangible!
4) THE FOOD – I eat better and healthier at camp than I do at home. Fresh fruit and salads at every meal…and let’s not forget the deserts…YUM!!
Obviously you spend a lot of time in the camp infirmary. What do you like to do when you are out and about?
When I am not at the infirmary (which is rare!), you will most likely find me on the side of the hollow watching an activity there and crocheting (always!)…I also enjoy going for a hike around the Jack Wells loop on a daily basis. It’s such great exercise and beautiful scenery. The archery range and ropes course are also places I enjoy visiting. The place you will not find me is the waterfront….I do not swim!!!
I JUST LOVE CAMP!! My dog, aka “Dr. Bella” loves camp too. As does my friend Ninny, our infirmary assistant/all around go to person! Camp K&E is magical…I will never leave, they will have to throw me out!!
Is there anything you want new parents or campers to know about Camp Medicine?
As head nurse I would like new campers and their parents to know it is super important for us to have the first month of medication at camp BEFORE the campers arrive. That first evening at camp is such an emotionally charged time and it is comforting to the campers, especially the new ones to know that we have what they need, no questions asked. Med Call is a busy time when the campers come to the infirmary for their medications. We do this a minimum of 4 times per day. Having everything in place ahead of time helps build trust between the camper and infirmary staff.
Second, I would like all parents, new and old to know that the camp medical team and I will treat their child as we would want our own to be treated! I am here 24/7 and will not hesitate to call them and I welcome their calls as well! I cannot say enough about open communication. This is a big step going to summer camp, and every parent wants to know that their child is safe (especially when they aren’t feeling well or have a reoccurring medical condition).
When should campers go to the Infirmary to have something checked out?
We are fortunate to have physicians on staff who run what we refer to as “sick call” in the morning, after breakfast, and again after dinner. This would be the time that a camper who has a rash, earache, sore throat, hurt ankle, et al should come to the infirmary and the doctor would be available to evaluate it. Of course there is a nurse available at all times, but when a little extra evaluation is needed this would be the best time to visit us.
If necessary, we have a wonderful group of orthopedic specialists 8 miles down the road in New London that we can refer campers to for x-rays, etc.
What about dental care for campers?
When it comes to orthodontia care, we have limited resources. Most/all of the orthodontists in the area will clip wires and glue brackets, but beyond that they will not do any adjustments on braces, so when possible, have your camper see the orthodontist just before camp starts to be sure everything is secure.