Gender Inclusion at VFES

  • VFES  is committed to providing a safe, inclusive and supportive experience for all participants. We work to ensure that our programs are supportive for participants of all gender identities and gender expressions.  Here are some of the frequently asked questions about inclusivity at VFES. If you have additional questions, please contact

  • What support will my transgender or non-binary child receive?
    We aim to be inclusive and respectful of our participants’ genders, including those who identify outside of the gender binary. In our staff trainings, we talk about inclusivity, and ways we can actualize this, by avoiding gender stereotypes.

    What about pronouns?
    Staff will respect the pronouns the participants choose for themselves. Our staff will do its best to use participants' chosen pronouns and model respectful interactions.

    At overnight camps and retreats, will boys and girls sleep in the same cabin?
    Participants are assigned to a cabin consistent with their gender identity.  All cabins are fully supervised with staff present 24 hours a day. 

    Are bathrooms gender neutral?
    All bathrooms are designated as single-occupant and gender neutral. All conventional social norms about respect, modesty and civility apply.

    Will participants get dressed in front of each other?
    Every participant's privacy is respected at all times. Participants are taught to use modesty and discretion when choosing a designated place to get dressed. Staff is available to support participants as needed.

  • What are the genders of the staff members during overnight trips?  
    We make every effort to assign staff members to rooms/cabins according to his or her gender. Our existing staff:participant ratios will remain in place.

    Why are you moving to gender-inclusive policies?
    VFES is committed to providing an inclusive and conscientious environment, which makes us a stronger and more compassionate community.

    VFES has policies and procedures that address behaviors and consequences that may arise during an Adult and Recreation Services program. We have a well-trained staff, many of whom are special educators and child development professionals. We address things like bullying, inappropriate behaviors, camp romances, social struggles and other issues.