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by Kate Moss, TSBVI Deafblind Outreach and Ron Lucey, Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (formerly known as Texas Commision for the Blind)

This time of year parents are beginning to think about the long, hot summer ahead and ask about camp options for their child with visual impairments or deafblindness. Many camps have already filled for this summer, but it would be a good idea to get information for next year. We are not endorsing any particular camp, and we strongly suggest you take the time to visit any camp to determine if it is the right one for your child. We would encourage you to consider camp for your child; it can be the most positive experience he or she may ever have. Listed below are a variety of camps that take place in Texas.

Camp C.A.M.P.
(210) 671-2598, 671-4098
Centerpoint, TX
Sam Van Neste, Program Dir.

This camp provides a wide range of recreational, rehabilitative and respite services for children with developmental disabilities ages 5-21 and their families. Five one-week sessions available throughout the summer. Disabilities served: physically and medically disabled; MR or seizure related disabilities; multiple disabilities; and autism and PDD. Call for information and applications. Limited scholarships available, sliding fee scale, or pay according to family's ability.

Camp Summit
(972) 484-8900
Lewisville, TX

Residential camping program for children who are physically and/or developmentally disabled, ages 6-adult. Fee per one week session is $400; some scholarships available. Please call for dates and age-appropriate camp sessions.

Cool School Summer Camp
462-5330 or 462-5329
Texas School for the Deaf, Austin, TX
Sharon Hovinga

Several types of camps including early childhood education, adventures in learning, computers, high school, family weekend retreat. Call for information.

Camp Challenge & Technology Camp
TSBVI Summer School Programs
(512) 206-9251
Austin, Texas 78756
Miles Fain

Sponsored by TSBVI, these camps offer great experiences for children who are blind and visually impaired. Technology Camp runs June 1-14 for students who will be in grades 7-12 in the Fall and are functioning academically on grade level or no less than 2 years below their current grade placement. Camp Challenge runs July 27-August 2 for students 12-18 who have the ability to communicate needs and wants with a variety of peers and adults and demonstrate a high degree of independence in self-care areas. There are also a variety of longer summer school programs available to children 6-21 who may have additional developmental disabilities that you may want to consider.

Camp Independence
(409) 435-2155
Stephen F. Austin University
Nacogdoches, TX
Dr. Ouida Fae Morris

For students with visual impairments who are 13 or older in the East Texas area.

Camp Sign
(512) 451-8494 (V/TTY)
Conroe, TX
Texas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Ann Horn, Billy Collins

Camp for deaf or hard of hearing youth aged 7-17. An outdoor training camp with various physical activities, teaching leadership skills and 911 awareness. Held at Camp Misty Meadow in Conroe, 35 miles north of Houston. Physical activities on rugged, rocky terrain not designated for wheelchair users. Sessions in July. $350 (sliding fee scale) with nonrefundable application fee of $25. Please call for more information and current fees.

Camp Villa
(806) 798-8181
Amarillo, TX
Stephani Campbell

Camp Villa, sponsored by Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (formerly known as Texas Commision for the Blind) , is designed for blind and visually impaired people ages 12-18. This camp is scheduled at the same time as Camp Challenge at TSBVI. They are very similar camps.

Camp Lone Star - Christian Record Services
(402) 488-0981
Athens, TX
Peggy Hansen

For individuals who are visually impaired ages 9-65 and who are able to function with a good degree of independence. One-on-one support is very limited. Activities include: skiing, horseback riding, beep ball.

Camp Teen Challenge
817-666-0707 ext 252
Waco, Tx.
Rhonda Adams

This camp takes place June 9-12 and is sponsored by Education Service Center Region 12 and Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (formerly known as Texas Commision for the Blind) .

Down Home Ranch
(512) 856-2256
20250 FM 619
Elgin, Texas 78621
Jerry & Judy Horton

Ranch Camp dates are June 15-20 and June 22-27. Ages 11-adults. Camp primarily for youth and adults with MR. Crafts, nature lore, archery, target practice, fishing, hiking, farm animal care and swimming are the camp activities. Call to register.

Elks Camp
(210) 672-7561
Gonzales, TX 78629
Shannon Siegel or John Kaulfus

Any child with disabilities not requiring one-on-one care, ages 6 to 16, who is a resident of the State of Texas, is eligible. An admissions committee reviews each application. Eligibility disregards race, religion, or ethnic origin. The camp is free of charge. Six 6-day camp sessions available between June 15 and Aug. 2. To apply, call and ask for an application. Activities include social, self-help and leisure skills. Benefits are both recreational and therapeutic.

Muscular Dystrophy Association
(512) 345-3800
Bruceville, TX
Karen Brown

A one week camp in Bruceville will be offered this summer. Any child ages 6-21 with at least one of the 40 neuromuscular diseases served by MDA is eligible. This is an overnight camp which will provide at least one doctor and two nurses on site. There will be a 1:1 ratio with a volunteer. There is no cost for this camp. Please call for more information.

Texas Lions Camp
(210) 896-8500 or FAX (210) 896-3666
Kerrville, TX
Wilma Hudson

Free summer program with many activities to challenge physically handicapped and diabetic children. All children must be residents of Texas, and must have a Lions sponsor. Contact any Lion in your area, or call the camp for the name of a Lion near you. Most disabilities served, prefer 70+IQ, but depend on case. Three 1-week sessions and two 2-week sessions. Separate camp is arranged for diabetic children and youth. Please call for more information.

Work in Tyler This Summer - WITT
Tyler Junior College
Judy Moore - Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (formerly known as Texas Commision for the Blind)

A summer work program for students 15 -21 who are visually impaired.

You may want to contact your Education Service Center, Vision Teacher or O & M Instructor, or your Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (formerly known as Texas Commision for the Blind) Caseworker to find locally sponsored camps. You may want to contact some of the camps about visiting their programs to plan for next year. If you are unsure about the benefits of camp, visit with another parent whose child has attended camp. You may contact Kate Moss at (512) 206-9224 if you need the name of such a parent.