Campground Jobs with Kids: Employer Concerns and Tips for
Getting the Job
Campground jobs and kids sound like they'd go together like apple
pie and ice cream. You can find RV parks that welcome working RVer families
with young children. Unfortunately, however, because of some bad apples, some
campground managers do not want to hire families with kids. Here we share with
you their concerns and some ways to help you overcome obstacles you may face as
RVers with children.
When Campground Jobs and Kids Don't Mix
Coleen and I talk with numerous managers of RV parks and campgrounds. Some ask for tips on expanding their pool of job applicants. We know that RVers with children sometimes have a hard time finding positions. So, we specifically ask if they welcome workers with kids. Some park managers appreciate the tip. They've never considered mentioning in their ads that families with children are welcome.
But, sometimes, more often than we'd like to see, the response isn't so great. These managers have had bad experiences with kids on the job. Here are the complaints we here about the most:
- Parents want to work the same shifts, and have the same time off, which means there's no adult at the RV to care for the kids.
- Children who are not old enough to take care of themselves are left to take care of each other.
- Children come to work with the parents.
- Workers' children play in the pool, unsupervised, which violates park policy.
- Workers' children run through the sites of paying guests.
- The RV site is cluttered and messy looking.
- Workers and their children do not adhere to park quiet hours.
- Parents leave the children unattended, to fend for themselves.
- Children hang around the park office, camp store, and other work areas.
This is unfortunate for responsible working campers. We know there are many RVers with kids who take both their campground jobs and their parenting jobs seriously. Those who don’t, make it harder for the rest.
What can be done to help this situation?
- Don’t take you children to work with you. You wouldn’t take them to a secretarial job at a bank, a job at a factory, a job running heavy equipment, or a job checking out groceries. So, don't take them to your RV park job, either. If you are taking care of your children at work, or even just keeping an eye on them, you are not giving your full attention to your job.
- Make sure your children have adult supervision. You may need to work different shifts, so one adult can always be taking care of the kids. You may be able to find someone else in the RV Park to care for your children, for a reasonable fee.
- Follow the rules.
- Keep your RV site neat and clean.
- Set a good example.
- Build a good reputation for yourselves.
Tips to help you get the job:
- If your children are not an issue, information about them does not belong on your resume.
- Have good references from past employers, to attest to the fact that your children are not a problem with your work.
- Address the campground manager's concerns with solid information.
- Have a childcare plan that shows the kids will have adult supervision.
- If you need special consideration because of your children -- such as you and your spouse working different days -- be honest with the park manager up front.
There are campground owners who like and welcome children. You can find campground jobs for families with young children. When you do, set a good example. Make it easier for the next RVing family to find campground work.
Coleen's comments: My husband, Bob Nilles, wrote this article about campground jobs and kids. He's particularly good with kids, and likes to see kids having fun at campgrounds. At the same time, he understands why certain situations frustrate RV park owners. He had hesitations about writing this article, because he knows many RVing parents are responsible. Getting the information out to you, however, is important. If you are an RVing family with young children, you need to know what concerns RV park managers have about hiring you, and what you can do to overcome them.
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