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Health and Safety

Your child’s health and safety is paramount. Our director team is available year round to talk with you about any health concerns that you have about your child. Tawonga takes tremendous precautions to provide a safe environment for your child, emotionally and physically, through conscientious planning, preparation, and training.

We encourage you to give us a call if you have any questions about health or safety at camp. You can reach us at 415-543-2267 or [email protected]. We’d love to hear from you!

Healthcare & Emotional Well-beingHealth Center (Infirmary)

Our nurse and doctor review each child’s health history, physical, and medication instructions before the child arrives at camp. Our health center is staffed around the clock by our medical team which includes a doctor, nurse, and medical assistants. First aid kits, sunscreen, and bug spray are dispersed across our grounds, and all staff are trained to monitor campers’ physical health, including hydration, sun protection, and appropriate footwear.

Tawonga also employs a therapist at camp who is available to meet with campers as needed, as well as provide additional advice and support to our counselors and Unit Head team.

For children taking medications, our medical team carefully dispenses the required dosage to each child at the proper time, and coordinates with an outside company to ensure that each child’s medications are properly prepared prior to their arrival. More information is provided during the camper forms process in the spring.


Tawonga’s state of the art kitchen produces family style meals for our 400 person community —three times a day, carefully providing alternatives for campers and staff with various dietary needs, restrictions, and allergies. Prior to attending camp, families complete Camper Information Forms which include detailed questionnaires about each child’s unique needs. Our kitchen staff makes meals from scratch and strives to provide healthy and delicious meals and snacks, sourcing local or organic foods whenever possible. Tawonga’s in-house bakery allows us to produce baked goods made from scratch, including sandwich bread, challah, and desserts. Snacks are available throughout the day, including fruit, string cheese, and crackers.

A Note on Nuts

We recognize that the needs of our camper community are continually evolving, particularly in the area of allergies and dietary needs. At the forefront of this is the increase in campers with severe nut allergies. We make every effort to be “nut aware” by not introducing nut products into our kitchen, not cooking with nuts, and reading food labels carefully. Additionally, we ask that campers and program participants refrain from bringing nut products into Camp or on the bus. However, we cannot guarantee that items have not been exposed to cross-contamination prior to arriving on our site and are therefore not a 100% nut-free environment. If your child has a severe nut allergy, please call our office to speak with a director.


Tawonga is accredited by the American Camping Association, and we exceed their rigorous standards for safety in everything from swimming to the ropes course to how food is prepared. Children are always under the supervision of a Red Cross Certified lifeguard while swimming or boating. On their out-of-camp wilderness adventures, campers are led by a guide who holds Wilderness First Responder and LGT certifications. Our staff is well-trained to make safety a top priority at all times.


Tawonga is located in the majestic Stanislaus National Forest, situated in a beautiful valley just outside Yosemite National Park. We maintain excellent relationships with the Forest Service, National Park rangers, and other agencies in the area, as well as our “neighbors” at other nearby camps and lodges. In fact, Tawonga hosts an annual roundtable for all government officials and neighboring organizations to come together to discuss pertinent land issues and renew connections between the agencies.

The city of Groveland is located thirty minutes away, where there are additional medical services. Should it be needed, Sonora is a fifty minute drive and is home to the regional medical center with extensive emergency care and treatment capabilities.

Emergency Response

Among the non-profit community, Tawonga has been a leader in emergency response, utilizing the Incident Command System (ICS) first developed by the US Forest Service. This model allows us to respond quickly and efficiently to emergencies, with prescribed roles and procedures that mirror those used by national agencies. Our staff undergo significant training in emergency response, include book learning and ongoing drills, to ensure that we are prepared should a situation arise.

Tawonga frequently provides training to other organizations about emergency preparedness and ICS. If you are interested in scheduling an ICS training for your agency, please contact us at [email protected].