Updated: February 6, 20223 

We encourage families to stay vigilant in monitoring for any signs of illness and to not send your children to program if they are sick. 

Like nearly every local business, we are short on staff, despite a focus on hiring. Due to the nature of our work, should staffing levels drop below our committed staff to participant ratio, we may have a need to cancel a program date. We will do our very best to communicate with families as early as possible, should this situation occur.

Thank you for understanding!
The White Pine Leadership Team

Our Approach

When making decisions in regards to our COVID-19 protocols, we take several other data points into account. 

  • We serve approximately 400 families per week.
  • Program families hail from over 30 communities across three states.
  • Masking and distancing protocols vary widely from one town to another.
  • We have families in our community with significant and difficult health challenges who are at high risk of dangerous, potentially fatal, complications if exposed to COVID-19.

Importantly, we considered how important human contact is in the work that we do. Observing the wings of a butterfly under a magnifying glass, teaming up to build a debris shelter, huddling beneath a tarp on a rainy day or comforting a child missing their parent or guardian — these are all essential elements of our programs and happen in close physical proximity. The decisions we make about COVID protocols affect hundreds of families and the collective health of that community weighs heavily for us.

After consulting local community health experts, at this time, we have made the decision to make masks optional.  However:

  • Masks may be requested to be worn if participants exhibit signs of respiratory illness.

These protocols align with the policies of our local school department (in York, Maine), which is required to follow State CDC, National CDC and Maine DOE guidance. Like the school district, our guidelines will be reviewed weekly and, at any time, could change to include universal masking or other precautionary measures. 

Note: All decisions regarding attendance at programs for staff and participants are at the discretion of White Pine Programs.

Thank you for supporting White Pine Programs during this crazy time. We are working hard to meet the needs of all participants, their families and our greater communities at large.