FAQs

FAQ's

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Work for Us - FAQs

Working with Ultimate - FAQ's

Below are the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions about the application process and working on camp.

CoVID-related FAQs were last updated 3rd September 2020.

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Application & Recruitment Process

How old do you need to be to work on camp?

Due to our vetting requirements, and the responsibility involved in all of our roles, we require applicants to be over 18 years of age, particularly as you will be responsible for the welfare and protection of a group of children in your care.

Do I need experience to work on camp?

Yes! All our staff need to have some experience in working or volunteering with children. The level of experience required will depend on the role for which you are applying, with senior or specialist roles requiring additional expertise and/or qualifications.

Be sure to read our JOB DESCRIPTIONS thoroughly to determine the role that’s right for you.

I live abroad. Can I still apply?

Yes, however, it is important to note that all staff are required to have the right to work in the UK and this is not something we can assist applicants with.

Also, we are only able to offer accommodation on our Ultimate Survival programme (camping at or near the venue). Therefore, you will need to arrange your own accommodation if you are relocating to work with Ultimate Activity Camps.

Do I have to work the whole season?

Normally we offer flexible part-season roles that can fit around your own availability. However, minimising mixing children and staff between groups does mean there is less flexibility with part-season roles and days off during October half-term. We want to keep the staff team as consistent as possible so please keep this in mind when you apply.

Do I have to commit to working all seasons during the year?

No, not at all! Just make it clear on your application what holidays you are applying for. We have opportunities during the Summer, and Half Term holidays (camp dependent) so there are opportunities throughout the year. We are sure you will love working for Ultimate Activity and will end up working all the holidays you can anyway! To find out when your nearest camp is running this year, check out our LOCATIONS information page.

Do I need a DBS check?

You do not need to already have a DBS check before you apply to work with us. But if you do have one, it is useful to have the information to hand when you are filling out your application, as you will be asked to provide the details!

But please be aware all staff are required to have a current Enhanced DBS Disclosure suitable for working with children before they start work with us.

If necessary, we can arrange this on your behalf. We will make a 50% contribution to the cost of your disclosure, so it will only cost you £26.90 to get a new check!

Staff who have lived abroad for more than 3 months at a time will also be subject to overseas police checks and we will support you through the process. 

What background checks are involved?

The Ultimate Activity Company understands its responsibility regarding safeguarding, child protection, and the suitability of staff. We take the recruitment, selection and training of staff very seriously, ensuring that all staff are suitable to carry out the roles required of them in line with safer recruitment guidelines. This includes ensuring all staff are subject to relevant DBS Disclosure checks, identity checks, employment history and reference checks, and international criminal record checks where required.

Sounds a bit daunting? We will help guide you through the process – don’t worry!

I've submitted an application. When should I receive a response?

We aim to reply to all our applicants within 3 weeks of receiving their application, regardless of the season for which you have applied. We will always keep you up to date with the progress of your application.

If we feel you have the right qualifications and experience a member of our recruitment team will be in contact for a telephone interview.

If we feel you do not match what we are looking for, we will inform you by email that you have been unsuccessful on this occasion. Unfortunately, we are unable to give individual feedback to unsuccessful candidates.

When should I receive a response following my telephone interview?

If you are successful after your interview, we will either be able to offer you a position (subject to passing relevant training and vetting requirements), or you will be placed on our reserve list until a suitable role is found for you (which happens in 99% of cases!). We will contact you within 2 weeks of your interview with the outcome. If you are not successfully selected for a role following your interview, you will be informed via email within 2 weeks.

I have been placed on a reserve list, what does this mean?

If we are unable to offer you a confirmed position (i.e. set dates working on camp), we may ask to place you on our reserve list. This means that you are invited to our Central Training & Assessment Days ensuring you are camp ready as soon as a role becomes available! As we continue to take bookings and our camps get busier, or if another member of staff drops out or is ill, we will be able to offer you work.

Whilst there is no guarantee of employment, if the past seasons have proved anything it is that we rely on our reserves and so a strong attendance at training will ensure you are at the front of the queue when work becomes available! If you do not wish to be on the reserve list, just let us know.

I have been offered a role, what next?

The employment and vetting process can seem a little daunting at first, but don’t panic! We have put down a simple step by step guide to the process at Ultimate Activity Camps. If you have any questions or queries, then our Recruitment Team will be on hand to answer any questions.

  1. Employment paperwork: Return your employment paperwork and applicable certificates (first aid, coaching, teaching, safeguarding, lifeguarding qualification etc) within 7 days of receipt.

  2. ID: Show us your ID and proof of your right to work in the UK

  3. DBS status: Apply for a new DBS check or show us an existing valid check (for example, one registered on the DBS Update Service)

  4. References: Provide contact details of at least 2 academic/professional referees which will allow us to confirm your academic and employment history.

  5. Training: Complete the UAC online modules and face-to-face training day.

  6. Induction: Attend the Camp Induction for the site you will be working at

  7. Pay: Upload your bank and tax information via our employee form 10 working days before your scheduled pay date.

And don’t forget to follow us on social media! Check our Instagram and Facebook pages.

Do I have to re-apply in the future if I want to work again?

We love that so many of our staff choose to return to camp for multiple seasons! It is great to have a good mix of returning and new staff on camp, and so a good performance on camp will certainly ensure there is plenty of future work available to you if you wish to come back season after season.

It’s really easy to re-apply for seasons – you just have to fill in our brief RETURNER APPLICATION FORM and our Recruitment Team will be in touch with an update from there.

Each season that you work is a new term of employment with Ultimate Activity. Therefore, if you are appointed for multiple seasons you will receive new employment paperwork each time you work. This helps to ensure your suitability to work with children remains up to date as you will be subjected to the same background checks (such as a valid DBS status) each time you work.

 

What does the current CoVID-19 situation mean for October half-term 2020?

As of 1st September, our Head Office team are back at work after a summer on the furlough scheme. We are already putting plans and preparations in place ready for our October half-term season. 

We will release more information on our website once our October half-term locations have been confirmed.

In the meantime, if you are interested in working during October half-term then please submit an application and our Recruitment Team will be back in touch within a few weeks. Please be aware that, after two and a half months away from our desks, we have a lot to catch up so be patient while we review all our applications. 

If you are a returning staff member then please submit a returning staff application and we will announce further information regarding the October half-term season via a newsletter shortly.

Training & Assessment

What training do I need to complete before working on camp?

Staff must complete our UAC training programme to ensure they are camp ready! 

1. ONLINE TRAINING - An introductory online course consisting of videos and multiple-choice assessment questions. This should be completed before you attend the Camp Induction Day. You will be sent all the details with your offer paperwork.

2. CENTRAL TRAINING & ASSESSMENT DAY - Due to COVID we have expanded our online training training modules. We are still planning to run a face-to-face training weekend for October half-term on 17/18th October (venue TBC).

3. CAMP INDUCTION DAY - All staff, both new and returning, will attend an induction day the weekend before their camp opens each season. This is a paid day and offers a chance to get camp ready and prepare for a busy season ahead.

When is my Central Training & Assessment Day?

Ultimate Activity Camp Staff Training

We are still planning to run a face-to-face training weekend for October half-term on 17/18th October (venue TBC).

In addition, there are five compulsory online modules that all staff must complete, with additional modules for Early Years staff, Managers and CoVID specific training.  

Ultimate Survival Staff Training

All Ultimate Survival programmes have been cancelled for 2020.

What is a Camp Induction and when is it?

Image removed.Camp Induction Day is the final part of training and takes place at your Camp usually the weekend before Camp opens. It is a chance for you to meet your colleagues, get familiar with the site and most importantly, get ready for the children! All our staff are required to attend a Camp Induction prior to each season they work. Staff are paid for their attendance at a Camp Induction Day.

  • Ultimate Survival Induction lasts for 6 hours.
  • Ultimate Activity Camps lasts for 3-4 hours.

You will be sent the exact dates and times with your employment paperwork.

How often do I need to retrain?

Your Central Training & Assessment attendance covers you for 2 years of working on camp. So if you attend in 2020, you wouldn’t need to come back to training until 2022! However please note, if you take on a new role you will be asked to attend any additional training days relevant to your new role. For example, if you move from being an Instructor, to a Manager, you will need to attend a relevant manager training day. Equally we reserve the right to ask any staff members to re-attend a Central Training & Assessment day if we feel their performance on camp would be improved in attending.

Do you offer any additional training or professional development?

For those wishing to gain additional qualifications we offer heavily subsidised first aid courses for our staff. This is a great way to add to your CV and it will put you first in line to be offered guaranteed work for future seasons. We offer the following courses:

  • Outdoor Pursuits First Aid 16 hour: Suitable for Ultimate Survival Staff

  • Paediatric First Aid 12 hour (Ofsted compliant): Suitable for Ultimate Activity and Ultimate Survival staff.

The course will cost each staff member £30. Ultimate Activity will pay for the course upfront and then the cost will be deducted from your wages.

When are your first aid courses?

Our first aid courses are delivered by a qualified and experienced member of our Operations Team, in partnership with Pro Trainings. The dates and locations of our internal first aid courses are:

12 Hour Blended Paediatric First Aid*:

  • Wednesday 14th October 2020 - Hill End Outdoor Centre, Oxford, OX2 9NJ

 

Outdoor Pursuits First Aid 16 Hour:

  • 2020 dates TBC

 

If you cannot attend any of the courses, we offer then we can consider booking you on to a more local course to you run by an external company, for which we are happy to discuss subsidisation. We can also help with the admin involved in booking you on to a course!

So, if you are appointed for a role with us, and want to complete a relevant first aid course, then let your Recruitment Coordinator know asap so we can support you through the process!

*Please note that our 12 Hour Blended Paediatric first aid course consists of two parts: 6 hours online preparation, and 6 hours face to face training on the above dates. The 6 hours online preparation MUST be completed before you attend the face to face training in order for you to obtain the qualification.

Working on Ultimate Activity Camps

What are the working hours?

Our camps are open to accept children from 8am – 6pm.

Therefore, Camp Managers, Early Years Managers and those selected to be a Key First Aider will work 8am – 6pm.

All other staff typically work 8.30am – 5.30pm, which is when most of the children are present on camp.

All staff receive a 30-minute unpaid lunch break which will be timetabled by the Manager.

Our Camps are open Monday to Friday, excluding Bank Holidays.

How big are the group sizes?

The ratios for our groups, per instructor, are usually as follows:

  • 4 & 5 year olds 1:8 (often 2 staff members will work together in a group of up to 16 children)
  • 6 & 7 year olds 1:14
  • Over 8 year olds 1:16

Are your camps residential?

Ultimate Activity Camps are day camps so therefore we do not offer accommodation and staff must commute daily. With over 30 locations nationwide there is sure to be a site near you so click on our LOCATIONS to find a camp near you

What will I be doing during a day on camp?

Our days are action packed, but due to the changes we have made for CoVID-19, the structure of our day looks a bit different!

We have 5 activities during the day, with two short breaks and one longer lunch break. The structure of the day will vary depending on what group you're working with as we have to stagger the breaks and minimise mixing between groups. Please refer to the CoVID specific FAQs.

Is there a uniform?

Yes! New staff will be given 2 company branded Tshirts and 1 Hoody before starting work. This first complete uniform set is provided free of charge to all employed staff, but additional uniforms in future seasons can be purchased at additional cost. Staff will need to provide their own tracksuit bottoms/shorts/sports leggings and trainers in black or navy and whistle.

What should I bring to camp?

Enthusiasm, a sense of humour, and commitment to inspiring children! That is the best place to start! You should also wear your UAC uniform (provided) along with dark coloured shorts/tracksuit bottoms/leggings. Bring lunch and snacks as you may not have time to leave camp to visit shops during your lunch break. If swimming is offered at your location then it is a good idea to bring swimwear every day, towel and spare clothes in case you end up going in the swimming pool. You will also need to bring your own whistle and a watch. 

Personal mobile phones are not permitted on camp, but these can be safely left in the staff room until you have finished work.

CoVID-Related FAQs

What does the guidance mean for my role?

We have made changes to the structure of the day and activity programme in order to keep staff and children safe, and for us to ensure we are providing you with a secure workplace. The government's idea of 'bubbles' is to keep the same staff member working with the same group of children throughout the day and week, minimising contact with others from outside the bubble. This will mean that roles will be less specialist and more like 'key worker' roles - staff will need to be flexible in delivering a mixture of activities, from art to sport.

Minimising mixing children and staff between groups does mean there is less flexibility with part-season roles and days off. To keep camp as consistent as possible across each week we have changed our booking policy so that now parents can only book their children on to camp for either a Monday to Friday or Tuesday to Thursday block. That means, where possible, we will only be offering contracts based on either working Monday to Friday, or Tuesday to Thursday.

Has the structure of the day changed?

Extended day passes are not available this season, meaning children will only be on site from 8:30am until 5:15pm. With some staff still working 8am to 6pm, this will allow extra time at the beginning and end of each day for cleaning and preparations.

The day is now split into 5 activities instead of 6, again giving extra time between activities for cleaning equipment, hand washing and moving around the sites whilst minimizing contact between groups.

The timetables have been altered to stagger break and lunch times. Juniors and Greens will follow one timetable, and Blues and Reds will follow another.

What activities are on offer?

We have revised our programme to ensure that all of the activities run during October half-term are deemed safe in line with the Protective Measures for Holiday Clubs guidance. Unfortunately, this means we may not be able to run all our activities as some may involve a level of risk we deem too high. Having said that, we will most certainly be offering up a varied and engaging programme for you to deliver this season.

What protective measures are in place for me?

The current 'Protect Measures for Holiday Clubs' guidance makes it clear that transmission among young children is extremely low and that the best protective measures against CoVID in childcare settings are based on the successful implementation of the following 6 preventative measures and 3 responsive measures all known as the ‘System of Controls’.

Preventative – things that staff will be implementing on camp:
- Minimising contact with individuals who are unwell.
- Cleaning hands more often than usual.
- Ensuring good respiratory hygiene by promoting the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach.
- Cleaning frequently touched surfaces more often than usual.
- Minimising contact and mixing by sticking to the time table and keeping distance between bubbles.
- Where necessary, wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).

Responsive - Head Office would implement the responsive measures to deal with the unlikely event of a confirmed case on site:
- Engaging with the NHS Test and Trace process.
- Managing confirmed cases among the out-of-school settings community.
- Containing any outbreak by following local health protection team advice.

All of these measures, combined with the comprehensive risk assessments that we have put in place this October, will create an inherently safer environment for children and staff where the risk of transmission is lower.

More information about how these measures will apply to the daily operations of your role on camp will be outlined in the CoVID-19 online training module.

Is training still going ahead?

We are planning to run October training over the weekend of 17/18th October. We are keeping a close eye on government guidance and this will only go ahead if it is safe to do so – your safety is our priority.

Our Operations Team worked hard to move all our training online if needs be, so if the training weekend does not go ahead then you will still be fully prepared on completion of those modules:
- Getting to Know UAC
- You and Your Role
- Health & Safety
- Safeguarding
- Behaviour & Welfare
- Early Years - only for staff working with the Juniors.

In addition, all staff, new and returning, will complete CoVID-specific training module.

If you are a returning staff member and two full years has passed since you last attended UAC training, then you must attend before working this season.

Details of how to access the online training will be included in your offer paperwork.

Will UAC be providing PPE?

The current 'Protect Measures for Holiday Clubs' guidance makes it clear that additional PPE is NOT required but we will have additional PPE on site to safely handle a suspected case.

What happens if a child displays symptoms of CoVID on camp?

There is very specific guidance for safe handling of a suspected case of CoVID on camp. Full guidance can be found here, but rest assured we will have PPE on site to care for a child until they can be collected and communication protocols in place so that if a case is confirmed the children and staff who have been in contact can be told to self-isolate.

What if I am contracted to work but change my mind as I am worried about CoVID?

We understand that the current situation is difficult and somewhat unknown. We would urge you to give very careful consideration to whether you would realistically be able to commit to working over the October season. In particular you should consider:
- Your journey to camp: are you happy using public transport?
- Your health and the health of loved ones: are you or anyone you live with classed as ‘vulnerable’ e.g. over 70, pregnant, or underlying health conditions?
- Your mental health: these are difficult and unprecedented times so please consider your own mental well-being when committing to work.

We completely understand that some of you will not be keen to place yourselves in a position of risk so we ask that, even if you have already signed your contract, you let us know at the earliest opportunity if you have any worries about working on camp. The earlier you let us know the earlier we can put other measures in place. 

Working on Ultimate Survival Camps

What are the working hours?

Working hours on camp are 8am - 6pm, with a 30-minute lunch break. Staff working hours will be extended during our Thursday night camp outs. Each of our camps are open Monday to Friday excluding Bank Holidays.

How big are your group sizes?

The ratios for our groups per instructor are 1:12. The age range for Ultimate Survival is 7 to 14 years and groups are arranged by ability and age.

Are your Camps residential?

The children attend camp during the day only, apart from on Thursday when they are given the option to stay overnight on our Ultimate Survival Camp Out.

For staff, Ultimate Survival offer on-site camping accommodation across all our locations at no cost, so you can apply to all our location no matter where you live!

Our back to basic tented accommodation will be located near on-site outdoor facilities, such as; outdoor kitchen, sheltered outdoor areas. And on-site indoor facilities including; toilet, showers and plug sockets.

We provide theThursday evening meals, Friday morning breakfast and Friday lunch to all staff. (NB. No other meals are provided.)

What do I need to bring on camp?

Enthusiasm, passion, and commitment to inspiring children in the outdoors is a great start!

We also recommend bringing the following to bring with you:

  • Sleeping bag
  • Roll mat
  • Pillow
  • Wash kit
  • Towel
  • Boots
  • Torch
  • Water proof jacket & trousers
  • Warm clothes
  • Spare clothes
  • Food
  • Pen / pencil
  • Notebook

NB. These are the essentials items. You are more than welcome to bring additional items to make your stay more comfortable! 

 

Is there a uniform?

Yes! New staff will be given 2 company branded Tshirts and 1 jumper before starting work. This first complete uniform set is provided free of charge to all employed staff, but additional uniforms in future seasons can be purchased at additional cost.

Staff will need to provide their outdoor appropriate clothing including trousers, jackets, boots.

What does a typical day entail?

Camps are open from 8am until 6pm (except on Thursdays when children are invited to stay for the overnight camp out!).

The children are split into groups based on ability and age and led through a timetabled day of activities. Staff will be assigned to the groups and activities that best suit their skills and expertise.

The general structure of a day on camp is:

DROP OFF: 8am to 9.30am

The children will arrive from camp from 8am onwards. During this time staff will lead structured play time, leading activities focusing on fun and participation. Staff are encouraged to use ice-breaker activities to help the children settle into their surroundings and make new friends.

MORNING WELCOME & REGISTRATION: 9.30am to 9.40am Staff will welcome the children to camp and complete a full register for all groups on camp.

ACTIVITY 1 Timings are flexible depending on the activity undertaken.
MORNING BREAK Staff supervise children whilst they are on their break.

ACTIVITY 2 Timings are flexible depending on the activity undertaken.

LUNCH During the children’s lunch break, the staff will take their own 30 minute lunch break according to the rota. The children’s break is split into two parts: The first 30mins are for eating their packed lunch, with staff supervision. In the second 30 minutes the staff will deliver fun play activities encouraging structure, fun, and participation.

ACTIVITY 3 Timings are flexible depending on the activity undertaken.

AFTERNOON BREAK Staff supervise children whilst they are on their break.

ACTIVITY 4

Timings are flexible depending on the activity undertaken.

END OF DAY WRAP UP: 4.20pm to 4.30pm

Staff will say goodbye to the children before pick up begins.

PICK UP: 4.30pm to 6pm

The children will be picked up from 4.30pm before camp closes at 6pm.
During this time staff will lead structured play time, leading activities focusing on fun and participation.

In 2020 we are running two different course programmes as part of Ultimate Survival. For more information about the courses and for example timetables, check out the following:

Getting Paid

When will I be paid?

During the Summer there are 3 different pay dates throughout the 8-week season which will be confirmed win your employment paperwork.

For work in other seasons you will be paid within 10 working days of the season ending.

Pay dates are confirmed in your offer paperwork each season.

How do I submit my pay information?

You will be provided with instructions for submitting your pay information with your offer paperwork. You need to provide the relevant bank details and tax information each season that you work at least 10 working days before your scheduled pay day.

Wages are paid via BACS payment and must be paid into a UK account.

Still got questions?

Contact us via work@ultimateactivity.co.uk or call 01865 582949 to speak to a member of our Recruitment Team who will be happy to help.

Further Info

Please read the following information sheets for more information: