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Youth Camps

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​The Maryland Department of Health Youth Camps Program regulates and licenses all youth camps in Maryland to protect the health and safety of kids attending Maryland youth camps. Have a question or concern? Please contact us

Find a Youth​ Camp ​​​​​​​

Please click  Youth Camps Searchable Database for information on Maryland licensed youth camps.

​Parents should ask questions of any prospective youth camp to be comfortable that their child will be safe and have a positive, fun experience. In addition to verifying that a prospective youth camp is certified by MDH, the Youth Camp Safety Advisory Council created a list of question for parents to use​. ​If you would like information regarding a particular camp or need to make a complaint, please contact the Center for Recreation and Community Environmental Health Services at 410-767-8417.


Apply ​for Certifi​cation of Your Youth Camp

The purpose of certification is to protect the health and safety of children attending Maryland youth camps.  The regulations governing youth camps establish minimum standards to ensure camp operators conduct criminal history record checks for employees, provide for the health of campers, maintain appropriate supervision ratios, implement health and safety procedures, report incidents, conduct high risk recreational activities safely and maintain the camp facility in good working order.​ ​

Day Ca​mp Criteria:

  • Program operates for at least seven days in a three week period
  • Campers are 3 1/2 to 18 years old
  • Program includes three recreation activities or one specialized activity
  • There are seven or more campers unrelated to the director
  • Primarily recreational activities or at least 25 percent of the time is outside recreational activity

Residential Camp Criteria:

  • Campers stay away from their parents for five days (four nights)
  • Campers are 3 1/2 to 18 years old
  • There are seven or more campers unrelated to the director
  • Primarily recreational activities or at least 25 percent of the time is outside recreational activity​

​Not sure if your facility needs to be licensed as a youth camp? Please review the regulations for youth camps (COMAR 10.1​6.06), including the sections on scope and definitions. If you have additional questions, please contact us​.

Application Process:

  1. Complete the Pre-Applicati​on for Youth Camp​. MDH will review the information you submit and send you an email with instructions to create your password for the MDH Youth Camp Portal.

  2. Log into the MDH Youth Camp Portal​ to:

    1. Complete your current application to oper​ate a youth camp.
      Before a Certificate, Letter of Compliance or Acceptance Letter is issued, MDH must determine substantial compliance with the regulations.
    2. Upload the required compliance documentation, including:
      1. ​Building documentation​
      2. Water source documentation
      3. Sewerage disposal documentation
      4. Written health program
      5. Written emergency procedures
      6. Written child abuse prevention and reporting procedures
      7. Background check and CPS clearance for Personnel Administrator​
    3. Pay the application fee​.
      1. New camps pay the lowest applicable fee ($190 for Day Camps, $500 for Residential Camps) at time of application, then pay any fee balance owed at the end of camp.
      2. Fees may be paid with a credit card or ACH in the MDH Youth Camp Portal; checks or money orders payable to the Maryland Department of Health can be mailed (please include Invoice Number on checks).

If you operate multiple camps at separate physical locations, complete and submit a separate Pre-Application, current application, fee and compliance documentation for each camp.


Key Link​​s, Fo​rms, Regulations, and Other Resources

  • MDH Youth Camps Web Portal - Access your application materials, check on the status of your application, and access other key resources.

  • Department of Human Resources - ​
  • Key resources!! ​Forms, trainings, and guidance documents​
    • ​Regulations trainings
    • Criminal Justice Information System (CJIS) Background Check
    • Child Protective Services (CPS) Background Check
    • Operator/Application Documents
    • Safety Plan ​​Guidance
    • Youth Camp Good Standing Information
    • Health Care Information
    • Medication Administration Authorization Forms
    • Medication Administration Training Courses​
  • Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR):
    • 10.16.06 - Certification for Youth Camps
    • 10.16.07​Health and Medication Requirements for Youth Camps
    • 10.01.17 - Fees for Food Protection, Public Pools, Public Spas, Public Spray Grounds, and Youth Camp Programs​​
  • Maryland Statute - Md. Health-General Code Ann. §14-401 - §14-411​

COVI​​D​​-19

At this time, youth camps are not required to implement any additional precautions or procedures for COVID-19. However, youth camps are strongly encouraged to review the guidelines from the CDC​, have a plan for a suspected COVID-19 outbreak, and clearly communicate COVID-19 policies and procedures with parents and campers. ​


Youth Cam​​​​p Safety A​​dvisory Council

The Youth Camp Safety Advisory Council assists and advises the Maryland Department of Health on the development and review of regulations for cert​ifying youth camps.  These regulations include standards for personnel screening procedures, medical services and safety procedures.  The Council also prepares an annual report to the Secretary on current issues affecting youth camps and children attending youth camps.​ 

The Council meets 4 times a year, the first Thursday of February, April, October, and December from 10:00am to 12:00pm.   ​Meetings are virtual and open to the public. Click here for more information.​

Eme​​​rgency Use Auto-Injectable Epinephrine Program

This Program was created by the Maryland legislature to authorize certain individuals to obtain and administer life-saving treatment to individuals who are suffering from anaphylaxis when physician services or emergency medical services are not immediately available. While individuals can be prescribed auto-injectable epinephrine for personal use by their doctors, this program is intended for staff of youth camps, food service facilities, and institutions of higher education. The Program requires an individual to go through an approved training program before a certificate is issued by the Department, which can be used to obtain auto-injectable epinephrine from a pharmacy.​

Click here for more information.​







Air Quality Alerts

Camps planning outdoor activities should be sure to check the ambient air quality forecast.


Contact Us

Center for Recreation and Community  Environmental Health Services

410-767-8417 

1-877-463-3464, ext 78417

Submit a Question

Brian Flynn, Chief: Brian.Flynn@maryland.gov​


Res​ources & Links

Key forms and documents

Trainings on regulations

Find a camp

MDH Youth Camps Web Portal


2024 Youth Camp Regulation Trainings


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