Read about our response to Covid-19

Read about our response to Covid-19

Updates About the Coronavirus & Camp

-June 11, 2021 (4:35pm)

As you may have heard, we have discovered multiple COVID cases at New Life Ranch this summer. As of today, June 11th, we have received 25 positive cases among our summer staff, hourly staff, and full-time staff at Flint Valley since June 5th. Several of these positive cases have been among fully-vaccinated individuals.

Most recently, we discovered our first camper case among a member of a Leadership Development Team at Frontier Cove. Fortunately, each Leadership Development team operates as its own cohort, and this does not affect anyone outside of that team. They have been notified of this exposure.

Because of the number of cases we have seen, and because of the vaccine-breakthroughs that are occurring, our medical team has been working closely with our local physician and an epidemiologist with the Oklahoma State Health Department. Per their recommendations based on the situation at New Life Ranch - Flint Valley, we are updating our Summer 2021 COVID protocols. Below are the updates and a reminder of how we’ll operate. We take the safety of our staff and campers seriously, and we want to assure you that we’re doing our part to keep camp safe while we fulfill our mission of proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and equipping believers for ministry.

UPDATED SUMMER CAMP COVID PROTOCOLS

Covid Tests: As of Sunday, June 13th, we will be requiring all campers to receive a negative COVID test before their arrival at camp. This is in line with many other camps in our region. We will allow a negative rapid test, and we recommend this $20 for 2 pack from Walmart as an affordable option. It is a non-invasive nasal swab test that can be self-administered. On a personal note, I just tested my two-year-old, and she wasn’t bothered at all! Please take this test on the Saturday before or Sunday morning of your session. Bring documentation of your negative test (a picture or document on your phone) for us to review during camper check in.

Mask Usage: As of Sunday, June 13th, campers and staff will be required to wear masks indoors when with anyone outside of their cabin. We are moving as many activities outdoors as possible, so the primary use of masks will be during chapel, before and after meals, and during Morning Camp Party. If there are times outdoors where we are unable to practice social distancing between cabins, we will ask staff and campers to put on their masks, but we will avoid these situations when possible. Campers will NOT have to wear masks in their cabin. Please send at least one mask per day for your camper. If they have a mask lanyard, we’d recommend they bring it. Due to the number of vaccine-breakthrough infections, and at the guidance of the Health Department, this will apply to both vaccinated and unvaccinated staff and campers.

Cohorting: We will still be operating camp within cohorts, a few cabins that will share a schedule, meal times, chapels, etc. However, the cabins within a cohort will socially distance from one another. This means that if a camper or staff in one cabin tests positive, it will only affect that one cabin, not the whole cohort.

Hand Hygiene: Campers and staff will practice “Wash In - Wash Out,” washing or sanitizing hands before and after activities, meals, time in cabin, etc. 

Monitoring for Symptoms: Each morning counselors will verbally monitor with each camper for any symptoms. Any symptoms will be reported to our medical staff. If our health professionals suspect COVID, they will contact parents. With parental consent, we can perform a rapid COVID test. We will maintain a low threshold for sending sick campers home, and you may still be required to pick up a camper with a negative rapid COVID test. 

NLR Staff COVID Policies: NLR has encouraged but not required its staff to receive a COVID vaccine. Across our sites, 63% of staff have been fully vaccinated. Regardless of vaccination status, our staff will be following the protocol above. Additionally, we will be cohorting our summer staff. Both full-time staff and summer staff will practice social distancing and masking around campers and other staff outside of their cohort, in an effort to minimize any spread should another staff member test positive. 

Please know that our desire is for your campers to be at New Life Ranch and experience the love of Christ during a fantastically fun week! We know folks are weary of COVID protocols, but our goal is to keep campers and staff at camp. Thank you in advance for your compliance in these protocols.

 

 

- June 10, 2021 (5:51pm)

 

I hate to post again like this, but out of an abundance of caution we have decided to cancel Week 2 at New Life Ranch Flint Valley, for both Sr. Camp and Leadership Development. After having 2 dozen people test positive for covid since last Saturday evening, with several of those actually being fully vaccinated, we are making this difficult but necessary decision.  

Jr. Camp and Leadership Development at New Life Ranch Frontier Cove will continue, we have had no positive cases at Frontier Cove.

After nearly two weeks of a great staff training at Flint Valley, Saturday evening, June 5th, we had a few staff and Somas come to our medical team not feeling well. After examination and testing, we had our first positive Covid case. As we began contact tracing and testing those who were symptomatic, we ended the night with 11 positive cases. This led to us needing to isolate 44 staff away from camp. After consulting with our onsite doctor and nurse, the next day we decided to send the remainder of summer staff home to quarantine, with the goal of them returning 7 days later with a negative covid test to start week 2. 

Unfortunately, over the course of the last three days we had more staff test positive for covid. At this point, we’ve had 24 positive cases of covid at Flint Valley. This includes 1 full-time employee, and 1 hourly employee. Throughout this process, we have been consulting with our local physician, as well as an epidemiologist with the Oklahoma State Department of Health. Due to the high number of cases among staff and some of those even being vaccinated, they are recommending that all of our staff quarantine for a full 14 days. This length of quarantine will better ensure a healthy team for us to start Week 3. 

This is again a gut wrenching decision, because we know we had over 300 campers excited and ready to come to camp for week 2 and we were excited and ready to have them at camp, too. Unfortunately, we feel confident this is the best decision at this point, even though we don’t like it! We will spend week 1 & 2 making sure all of our staff are healthy, so that we can, Lord willing, have Sr. Camp and Leadership Development at Flint Valley for the remaining 5 weeks this summer. 

 

Please be in prayer for health for our staff who tested positive and the rest of our staff who are quarantining for the remainder of this week and next. They have been looking forward to serving for months and are really disappointed. Also, please be in prayer for the over 300 campers that are going to be extremely disappointed, as well. Hopefully we can get them into a week of camp later this summer. Though we grieve this decision, we are not without hope. We know that God’s mercies are new every morning; great is His faithfulness. Pray with me for no more positive tests, and for a healthy and whole team ready to start Week 3.

 

 

Tom Graney

Executive Director

tom@newliferanch.com

 

Amelia Abbott

Director of Programs

amelia@newliferanch.com

- June 6, 2021 (8:45am CST)

Out of an abundance of caution we have decided to cancel Week 1 at New Life Ranch Flint Valley, for both Sr. Camp and Leadership Development. We had several Flint Valley summer staff test positive for covid yesterday. 

Jr. Camp and Leadership Development at Frontier Cove will continue, and we have had no positive cases at Frontier Cove.

After nearly two weeks of a great staff training at Flint Valley, yesterday evening we had a few staff and Somas come to our medical team not feeling well. After examination and testing, we had our first positive Covid case. As we began contact tracing and testing those who might even be slightly symptomatic, we ended the night with 11 positive cases. This led to us needing to isolate 44 staff. Due to the number of cases among staff, we will be quarantining the entire Flint Valley summer staff team for the next week to monitor symptoms and better ensure a healthy team for Week 2. 

This is a gut wrenching decision, because we know we had over 300 campers excited and ready to come to camp today and we were excited and ready to have them at camp, too. Unfortunately, after consulting with our medical team and needing to quarantine so many of our staff, we feel confident this is the safest decision at this point, even though we don’t like it! We want to spend this next week making sure all of our staff are healthy, so that we can, Lord willing, have Sr. Camp and Leadership Development at Flint Valley for the remaining 6 weeks this summer. 

Please be in prayer for health for our staff who tested positive and the remainder of our staff who are quarantining for the next 7 days. They have been looking forward to serving for months and are really disappointed. Also, please be in prayer for the over 300 campers that are going to be extremely disappointed, as well. Hopefully we can get them into a week of camp later this summer. Though we grieve this decision, we are not without hope. We know that God’s mercies are new every morning; great is His faithfulness. Pray with me for no more positive tests, and for a healthy and whole team ready to start Week 2.

- May 17, 2021 (11:39am CST)

After discussions with our medical team and evaluating the current COVID status, we will no longer require masks for campers or staff. We do still have other COVID protocols in place this summer to help keep your campers and our staff safe and prevent the spread of illness:
- camp will still happen in cohorts to keep group sizes smaller
- we will ask for social distancing between cabins within a cohort in case of a positive camper case (this will mean a whole cohort is not exposed)
- we will prioritize outdoor and open air activities 
- there will be a simple entry screening of campers & guests and daily symptom monitoring 
- we will still practice good hygiene and cleaning of high-touch surfaces
See our complete plan below.

- March 19, 2021 (11:15am CST)

Summer Camp in 2021

This summer, our goal is to operate a full summer of ministry! Unfortunately last summer we had to shut down several weeks of camp due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In order to avoid having to do that this summer, we are working hard to minimize/eliminate any community spread of COVID-19 among both campers and staff. This means we’ll take some precautions and follow certain protocols that are set in place by both the CDC and the Association of Camp Nursing (ACN), as well as utilizing the expertise and recommendations of our medical team. 

The situation continues to change, particularly with the growing availability and access to vaccines. We are highly encouraging our staff to get fully vaccinated prior to camp as they are eligible and able to be. 

Because of the rapidly changing situation, know that we will continue to monitor the guidance of the CDC, the ACN, the state and local health departments, our medical team, and the rate of infection in our region. We anticipate needing to update our processes to align with current guidance as we approach summer.

Changes for 2021

If you came to camp last summer, you will probably be familiar with most of what we are doing this year. We learned a ton about how to run camp in the midst of a pandemic last summer, and we feel better equipped to make camp a safer environment for our campers and staff. We know better, so now we are going to do better!

Cohorts, Masks, and Social Distancing (This was updated on May 17th)

After discussions with our medical team and evaluating the current COVID status, we will no longer require masks for campers or staff. We do still have other COVID protocols in place this summer to help keep your campers and our staff safe and prevent the spread of illness:
- camp will still happen in cohorts to keep group sizes smaller
- we will ask for social distancing between cabins within a cohort in case of a positive camper case (this will mean a whole cohort is not exposed)
- we will prioritize outdoor and open air activities 
- there will be a simple entry screening of campers & guests and daily symptom monitoring 
- we will still practice good hygiene and cleaning of high-touch surfaces

Cleaning and Sanitizing

Health Screening

Sickness Protocols

In the unfortunate event that a camper gets sick at camp (regardless of if we suspect it to be Covid-19), we will use the following protocols. We will have a very low threshold for sick campers remaining at camp. In the event that your camper is sick, you will most likely be asked to come pick them up from camp as soon as possible.

Isolate 

Confirm

Respond

 

RESOURCES

The following documents were heavily relied upon while defining our preparedness plan.

ACA / YMCA / EHE Field Guide on Implementation of CDC Guidance
Oklahoma OURS Plan
Hand Washing Tips
CDC Guidance for Child Care Programs
Health Department Testing Sites in Oklahoma
Meeting, Conference and Webinar Notes
Private COVID Testing Sites, State Testing Sites
CCCA Webinar Recordings
ACA Camp Counts COVID Learnings
Strategies for a Healthy Camp (ACA, ACN)
Communicable Disease Management in the Camp Setting (ACA, ACN)
Using Heat to Kill SARS-CoV-2 (US Nat’l Library of Medicine)

- February 10, 2021 (1:46pm CST)

As we continue to be open and ready to serve retreat groups and allow for them to have space for impactful ministry, we are excitedly preparing for Summer Camp 2021 at New Life Ranch! 

We look forward to Frontier Cove and Flint Valley being filled with the sights and sounds of worship, laughter and play as we seek to fulfill our mission to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ and equip believers for ministry. Our theme this summer is REAL PWR, and as we look at 2 Corinthians 12:9, we’ll be learning about how our weaknesses don’t disqualify us from following Christ, but rather that His grace, strength, and power enable us to live a joy-filled and Jesus-following life.

Your camper’s safety (physically, emotionally, spiritually) is always a top priority for us. Last summer we learned a lot about how to navigate camp during a pandemic, and we feel better prepared for what we need to do this year. Our teams have been hard at work to adjust our processes and procedures to provide your campers with an experience that is both as safe as possible and still packed with the relationships and fun that they love! We are working closely with our Medical Team, as well as staying up-to-date on the local, state, and national COVID-19 guidance. In mid-March, we will release our detailed COVID-19 Protocols for Summer 2021, but in the meantime, here are some highlights of what you can expect:

We look forward to releasing more details regarding our plans in mid-March. Thank you for allowing us to partner with your family in the spiritual formation of your campers. It is a privilege and honor to do so!

-July 23, 2020 (4:14pm CST)

This afternoon, we received word that a Week 8 Jr. Camper has tested positive for COVID-19. This camper went home on Tuesday, July 21st, after starting to show symptoms on the evening of Monday, July 20th, and received a positive test result today. Parents of those campers who were in the same cohort have received an email letting them know about the situation. We also received news this morning that 2 other Nehemiah Team camper, from the final session (Session 5) that ended last week, have tested positive. 

After consulting with our medical team and our Board, we have made the difficult decision to end our Summer Programs at our Frontier Cove site today.

We are saddened to have to end camp a couple of days early, but we cling to the hope we have in Christ. We continue to proclaim the truth of our theme verse for this summer: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

--



-July 14, 2020 (12:33pm CST)

 

Friends and partners,

Last night we were made aware of another camper who tested positive for COVID-19 after their time as a Sr. Camper at New Life Ranch Flint Valley. The camper was here for week 6 (beginning July 5th), and left early on July 9th. The camper received a positive test result yesterday, July 13th. 

After consulting with our medical team and our Board, we have made the difficult decision to end our Summer Programs at our Flint Valley site. This includes cancelling our Summer Camp, Leadership Development, and Family Camp at Flint Valley.

This morning we were also made aware of one Leadership Development camper who tested positive after their time at NLR Frontier Cove (June 28th-July 11th), our first positive case at that site. We will also be ending the Nehemiah Team at Frontier Cove, as well as sending home the staff who had contact with this camper. 

Since the Nehemiah Team operated separately and did not come into contact with Junior Campers, we will continue Junior Camp at Frontier Cove, including Week 8 next week.

We are saddened to end our summer early, but we care for the safety of both your family and our staff, and we trust that God will continue to work in your lives outside of your time at New Life Ranch. We look forward to having you return in Summer 2021.  We cling on to the hope we have in Christ, and we continue to proclaim the truth of our theme verse for this summer: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Sincerely, and until next summer,

Amelia Abbott 

New Life Ranch Director of Programs

amelia@newliferanch.com

(918) 422-5506 ext. 149

 

Tom Graney

New Life Ranch Executive Director

 tom@newliferanch.com

 (918) 422-5506 ext. 204

-July 13, 2020 (4:09pm CST)

This morning, we were made aware by a parent that their Sr. camper during Week 5 (June 28th-July 4th) at New Life Ranch Flint Valley has tested positive for COVID-19. The camper began showing symptoms on July 5th, the day after camp ended, and sometime in the week following camp at NLR they were tested for COVID-19, receiving a positive test result today.

We are taking measures to communicate this with all who may have had contact with this camper, as well as isolating and testing the eight counselors who were in both this cabin and its cohort and may have been exposed to the virus. If this camper was in your camper's cabin or cohort, or if your camper had any of these counselors in later weeks, you will receive an email from us. The counselors who were exposed to the camper will be sent for testing and quarantined until 2 weeks from potential exposure. After removing these counselors, we have done an extra disinfection of the cabin, as well as introduced the campers to their new counselor. 

We take camper safety seriously and want to be transparent with you. Please reach out with any questions you may have. We have been and will continue to pray for camper & counselor health and safety.

Amelia Abbott
New Life Ranch Director of Programs
(918) 422-5506 ext. 149
amelia@newliferanch.com

-July 2, 2020 (1:30pm CST)

We are excited to announce that we have received all the test results from the counselors who were in contact with the camper who tested positive after attending Week 3 at Flint Valley. All 8 counselors, including the 2 in the cabin with the camper who tested positive, have tested NEGATIVE for COVID-19. Based on the recommendation from the Health Department and our medical professionals, these counselors will continue to be isolated and monitoring for symptoms until 2 weeks past exposure, which will be Saturday, July 4th.

 

We are grateful to be able to share this update with you, and we continue to pray for the health of those who have been impacted by this virus. Again, thank you for the opportunity to have your camper with us this summer as we seek to fulfill our mission of proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and equipping believers for ministry. Feel free to reach out with any questions. We look forward to seeing you all again!

 

Amelia Abbott
Director of Programs
(918) 422-5506 ext. 149
amelia@newliferanch.com

-June 28, 2020 (10:15am CST)

Last night we were made aware by the Cherokee Nation Public Health Department that a Sr. camper during Week 3 (June 14th-20th) at New Life Ranch Flint Valley has tested positive for COVID-19. According to the Health Department, the camper began showing symptoms on June 21st, the day after camp ended, and sometime in the week following camp at NLR they were tested for COVID-19 and received a positive test result.

After consultation with three medical professionals in regard to our response plan, we are taking measures to communicate this with all our camper families, as well as isolating and testing the eight counselors who were in both this cabin and its cohort and may have been exposed to the virus. None of these counselors are currently showing any symptoms. At this time, this is the only positive COVID-19 case that we are aware of among our campers and staff. The medical professionals also believe, given the steps we have taken to isolate the staff in that cohort as well as the current response plan we have in place, that we are good to proceed with camp for Week 5. Since the end of Week 3, all cabins and general spaces have been deep cleaned twice, as well as daily cleanings.

The Cherokee Nation Public Health Department asked us to pass along their information for anyone who has questions about exposure, symptoms, or to get testing. If your camper was exposed to this camper or at camp this week, we have shared with you our contact's information. If you are interested in getting our contacts name and number with this organization, please contact our office.

We take camper safety seriously and want to be transparent with you. Please reach out with any questions you may have. We have been and will continue to pray for your camper and family’s health and safety.

We have a COVID-19 FAQ page on our website where we will have more detailed information about our plans. If you have specific questions, please contact our office and we will be happy to help clarify our protocols and procedures for camp.  

Amelia Abbott
New Life Ranch Director of Programs
(918) 422-5506 ext. 149
amelia@newliferanch.com

 

-May 29, 2020 (3:30pm CST)

 

 

Hello friends and partners - We're only 9 days away from camp starting and we couldn't be more excited!

I want to continue to communicate with y'all some of the changes or new "Get To's" we have in place for this summer:

Thanks so much for partnering with and praying for the ministry of New Life Ranch. We're anticipating God doing great things as we go about accomplishing our mission of Proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and equipping believers for ministry - by Walking His Way this summer!

We have a COVID-19 FAQ page on our website where we will have more detailed information about our plans. If you have specific questions, please contact our office and we will be happy to help clarify our protocols and procedures for camp.  

-May 22, 2020 (9:30am CST)

While it was originally our plan to make an announcement today further regarding our plans for summer camp, we have decided to delay until we have better information in the coming days. We are expecting Phase 3 guidance from the Oklahoma governors office any day now. As soon as we have that information we will make another announcement about our plans moving forward. Thank you for your patience!

We have a COVID-19 FAQ page on our website where we will have more detailed information about our plans. If you have specific questions, please contact our office and we will be happy to help clarify our protocols and procedures for camp.  

-May 15, 2020 (10:40am CST)

With camper and staff safety being a priority, we have implemented several changes for this summer:

  1. We have a COVID-19 FAQ page on our website where we will have more detailed information about our plans. If you have specific questions, please contact our office and we will be happy to help clarify our protocols and procedures for camp.  

  2. At home pre-screening and temperature checks before campers get to camp. We will be taking camper temperatures daily and we need your help in getting them used to the process before they arrive at camp. We’re depending on you not being sick or bringing sickness to camp.  Please continue to practice reasonable social distancing and avoid non-essential travel.

  3. A new release form will need to be signed for your camper.  Also, If you are a sponsor or volunteer attending camp you will need to sign a release form as well.

  4. Enhanced screening and temperature checks of campers during check-in.  Each camper will be required to do a medical screen upon arrival. You will be receiving a modified check-in/pick-up instruction email on May 22nd and 2 weeks prior to your scheduled week of camp. We will be limiting access to cabins and other camp facilities during check-in/pick-up to non-campers. 

  5. We’re limiting contact exposure points. We will have a staggered check in process. You will be emailed a specific time for check-in the Saturday before your Sunday check in. Parents will not be allowed in cabins at check-in and check-out (don’t worry, you’ll still get to meet their counselors. They will help your campers get their bunks set up!). We are not accepting care packages for distribution throughout the week (you can pack snacks in their luggage or purchase a care package through the online canteen). We will not be taking canteen or account payments on Sunday. Please do that through your online account before Sunday. Our Friday evening testimony service will not be open to parents or guests (we are exploring streaming options) There will be no large group Saturday morning celebration during pick up.

  6. Enhanced cleaning of cabins and general spaces during camp. Counselors will assist campers during cabin clean up and disinfect daily. General areas like the dining hall, gym, and game rooms will be disinfected daily with CDC approved cleaner. We will have more washing and sanitizing of hands when entering cabins and general spaces around camp.

Even with all these new things in place, we are still confident that your camper is going to have a great time at camp. We are so excited to see them here this summer and can’t wait to share the love of Jesus with them! 

-May 8, 2020 (1:00pm CST)

Hello Friends and Partners,

 

I'm glad to be able to give you this update on the State of New Life Ranch, specifically related to summer camp 2020 - After many hours of prayer, meetings, evaluation, consulting with local medical providers, consulting with state of Oklahoma officials and following their phasing guidelines, as well as following CDC recommendations up this point; we are thrilled to announce that (drumroll please . . . . . .)

 

WE WILL BE HAVING CAMP THIS SUMMER!  

 

Possibly more than ever, we are excited about getting kids to camp! There are more details to come and we will be getting that information out to everyone soon, but with information we have right now, we feel confident with having camp this summer.

 

Now some things will look different this summer. Unfortunately, one of those things is the need for us to cancel week 1 of camp. Having that extra week is vital for us to be better prepared and ready to serve campers this summer.

 

Our administrative team has done a fantastic job with getting all week 1 campers and leadership development campers into other sessions this summer and they will be contacting those impacted by this decision we've had to make. So this summer, we will be starting with week 2 on Sunday, June 7th.   

 

With camper and staff safety being a priority, several other changes for this summer:
    - At home pre-screening before kids ever get to camp
    - A new release form will need to be signed
    - Enhanced screening during check-in 
    - Limiting access to cabins and other camp facilities during check-in to non-campers
    - No drop off of care packages for campers
    - Enhanced cleaning of cabins and general spaces during a week of camp
    - More washing and sanitizing of hands when entering cabins and general spaces around camp
    - Our Friday evening testimony service will not be open to parents or guests (we are exploring streaming options)
    - No large group Saturday morning celebration during pick-up

 

Really, camper and staff safety are always a priority for us each summer, but with our current situation we are learning and adding new and more enhanced measures for this summer. We apologize for any inconvenience that might cause and ask for grace and understanding, know that the decisions we are making we believe are for the good of everyone. 

 

Along with our priority on safety, it's also a priority of ours to stay focused on our mission of proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ and equipping believers for ministry. Maybe more than ever, we want campers to hear the truth of God's word and understand the new life that it can bring. We all need to grow in our understanding and applying of Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." It's my hope and prayer that we can all learn to better "Walk His Way" as we go through life, even through a pandemic.

 

Again, WE WILL BE HAVING CAMP THIS SUMMER and WE'RE SUPER EXCITED ABOUT THAT!
More detailed information to come soon, but for now we are anxiously counting down those 30 days before campers arrive.

 

See ya soon and wash your hands ;)

 

One last thing to mention - please be in prayer about and consider a gift to our Mission 19:14 Camper Scholarship Fund. This COVID situation has impacted that fund and we have many campers in financial need that want and need to be at camp this summer. 
Donate to the Mission 19:14 Camper Scholarship Fund

-April 24, 2020 (1:45pm CST)

Hello friends & partners,

I want to update y'all on what's been happening at New Life Ranch. Unfortunately it's been pretty quiet. We've been closed to serving retreats and Adventure Ed school groups since the middle of March. We truly miss the energy
 and noise of having groups on property, and ultimately we miss lives being changed through the power of the Gospel as guests are able to retreat away from their normal schedule in life at New Life Ranch.

With no groups here, we've still been busy working. We've been able to do more in depth cleaning inside and outside of buildings. We're continuing to work on remodeling the old dining hall and redoing the landscaping in front of the chapel. Of course, the grass is growing, so mowing and weed eating has started. We're also continuing to work and plan toward summer camp happening. We've been running through many different scenarios and models of what this summer might look like. We continue to consult with state authorities and local medical providers, as well as looking to CDC recommendations. We are earnestly praying for wisdom and discernment with making decisions.

With that said, we plan to make an announcement on Friday, May 8th about our schedule for summer 2020.

As you seek the Lord in your own daily life, I'd ask that you please pray for the ministry of New Life Ranch as we navigate these uncertain waters of COVID-19. It's our hope to honor the Lord in all that we do and make the greatest impact in the lives of others that is possible. I encourage you to allow the word of God to dwell within you richly always and certainly during these times - Be encouraged by the words of the Psalmist and the prophet Isaiah:

Psalm 46:1-7
"God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble at its swelling.
There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;
God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress."

Isaiah 40:28-31
"Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint."

I look forward to hopefully being able to see a lot of you this summer

-April 1, 2020 (1pm CST)

In accord with the new Presidential and CDC recommendation of "30 days to Stop the Spread," New Life Ranch will continue to remain closed to serving retreat and Adventure Education groups, as well as all NLR programmed events until April 31st. It is still our hope to host retreat groups in May and we are continuing to plan and work toward (and pray) that summer camp will still happen this summer.

-March 27, 2020 (3:30pm CST)

In our update last week, I shared that NLR would be postponing serving any retreat groups, NLR hosted camps, or ministry guests through March 31st (15 days to stop the spread.) On March 24th, the governor of Oklahoma issued an order that all non-essential businesses in the counties where both NLR Frontier Cove and NLR Flint Valley are located, are to close on March 26th and remained closed for 21 days. Meaning, NLR will remain closed until April 15th, unable to serve guests onsite.

We are disappointed with this order, but not crushed. We might be perplexed by all that is happening, but not driven to despair. We are not losing heart during this momentary trouble, because we know we serve a God and have a saviour who has overcome the world. We will make it through this!

A word about summer camp. We are still working toward and planning for summer camp to start on May 31st and program all of the weeks of camp that are currently scheduled. We look forward to kids coming to camp this summer and having the greatest week of their life by building relationships with others, singing silly songs and playing fun games, and hearing the Gospel of Jesus Christ and being equipped for ministry. We don’t anticipate having to make a decision about anything changing related to summer camp until the first week of May. And of course we’re praying that there are no changes at all.

Currently, our normal cancellation policy is in place of no refunds for deposits for summer camp. If the government, CDC, or other authority requires us to cancel any weeks of summer camp, there will be several options in regard to camp fees that you've already paid. As New Life Ranch is facing some real financial hardship this spring with already losing most of our retreat groups and programmed events, and will face even harder times if this situation impacts summer camp, you will have the option to donate the funds that you’ve already paid (and receive a tax deductible receipt,) you can defer the funds for a future event, or receive a full refund.

Thank you so much for your understanding and for your prayers during these uncertain and trying times. Remember that God’s word tells us that He will never leave us, nor forsake us. As challenging as things might get, God is always there and offers a peace that passes all understanding when we lean into and trust in Him.

-March 17, 2020 (6:30pm CST)

In these unprecedented times, things are changing rapidly. Just last Thursday, March 12th, New Life Ranch released a statement related to the coronavirus. As we stated then, we plan to act in accordance with recommendations from our local healthcare professionals and from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.) With that in mind, starting today, March 17, 2020, NLR is going to postpone serving any retreat groups, NLR hosted camps, or ministry guests through March 31st (15 days to stop the spread.) We will also be postponing our A Night for New Life Ranch dinners until the fall. When possible, we are also allowing our staff to work from home during this time. Even though we currently haven’t had any reported cases in our area, we are implementing these decisions to help cut down on face to face interaction, with the hope to do our part with helping to flatten the curve and slow the spread. 

If you have questions, please still call or email, our staff will be responding to voicemail and email usually within 24 hours.

Also, know that our heart remains hopeful that we will be able to resume serving retreat groups this spring season. We are also continuing to plan and work toward the hope of having a great summer of ministry with thousands of kids coming to camp this summer. Please join us in praying for this. 

We will continue to pray and seek wisdom and discernment, as well as focus on “Trusting in the Lord God with all our heart and leaning not on our own understanding; but in all our ways acknowledging Him, believing he will make our paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6   




-March 12, 2020 (1:05pm CST)

As concerns about the coronavirus pandemic grow daily, our desire as a ministry is to respond with wisdom and discernment using trusted, available resources. New Life Ranch places a high priority on guest, camper, and staff safety, and we are continuing to monitor the news and reports about COVID-19. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) along with the World Health Organization, are monitoring COVID-19 cases closely and providing updated guidance to federal, state, and local health officials. We plan to act in accordance with recommendations from our local healthcare professionals and from the CDC for our region. 

NLR is continuing to host scheduled retreats at our Flint Valley and Frontier Cove locations.

Based on information from the CDC, we recommend group leaders use these guidelines in preparation for their time at NLR. 

We recognize that NLR staff have a role in providing a safe and comfortable place for ministry to happen. We are taking necessary precautions to help minimize the spread of any virus. Our housekeeping staff routinely clean every cabin prior to a group's arrival using approved disinfectant chemicals to wipe down mattresses, all bathroom fixtures, flat surfaces and door knobs. They follow this same process for cleaning public areas like bathrooms, meeting rooms, and indoor recreation areas. In addition we schedule housekeeping staff while guests are on-site to clean public restrooms in between meal service times. We also have alcohol based hand sanitizer available in the dining hall at all meals. 

At this time, we also plan to fully program our spring horse camps, parent & child camps, and summer camp ministry as scheduled. 
We are currently evaluating procedures for summer camp admittance (such as screening for temps, health history, travel history, respiratory status) and will publish that information as we have more clarity on the impact in our region as we get closer to summer camp starting. 

As a ministry we believe that God is in control of this situation and we need to not let panic rule our day. Dr. Dan Pummill has served as our summer camp doctor on call for over 30 years and he had this to share, 

“God is in control of the Covid-19 threat, but He has given us medical science to best guide our response. Panic and doubting His care for us will not serve any purpose. Our nation frequently turns to prayer at times like this when desperation is a motive. In faith, as His children, we should pray for His will and protection. The CDC has published guidelines that are being routinely updated. Going to a reliable source is the best education. Prayer is a great response, and everyone should be doing what they can to be healthy. Practice proper contagion precautions.

Fortunately, at the time of this communication, our region where our camp facilities are located have had minimal or no impact from the coronavirus. Knowing this situation is rapidly changing, New Life Ranch will continue to monitor the developments and act in accordance with recommendations from our local healthcare professionals and from the CDC for our region. We will keep our guests and camper parents updated as more information becomes available.

An encouraging perspective for Christians. 

https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/christians-anxious-coronavirus/

Helpful links about coronavirus, children and camp.

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/children-faq.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

https://www.who.int/health-topics/coronavirus

https://www.acacamps.org/resource-library/coronavirus-information-camps?utm_source=Informz&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=ACANow&_zs=gqBPX&_zl=Lv812

https://www.campnurse.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Coronavirus-FAQs-Mar-2020-1.pdf



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