Welcome to Camp Abilities St. Louis!
This issue we feature Dr. Lauren J. Lieberman, who from an early age helped her siblings surpass their learning disabilities, even as she struggled to stay focused in her studies. From an early age she immersed herself in an active lifestyle which paved the way for her career. After years spent in active outdoor camps, she dove academically into the Adapted Physical Education program at West Chester University, which was a founding step to her present endeavors. After experiencing the personal rewards of helping those less fortunate, she found purpose and become a teacher.
Amongst her greatest achievements, which are many, she established a program called Camp Abilities, where she helps the blind and visually impaired experience the joy and benefits of training camps, much as she did during her childhood and adolescence. The program provides kids who are blind and visually impaired the opportunity to cherish the sense of accomplishment in sports and physical activities, to challenge and overcoming uncertainty, and pass through the veil of the impossible and into the realm of accomplishment. Now, with over 20 Camp Abilities throughout the United States and around the world, that feeling of accomplishment is reciprocal. Lauren has written a wealth of research studies, books and ideas to promote awareness and insight into her field of study.
Camp Abilities St. Louis is an educational and fun sports camp for children and youth who are visually impaired. The camp is located on the campus of the Missouri School for the Blind at 3815 Magnolia in St. Louis, and is sponsored by the StL Firing Squad Beep Baseball team, AGAPE Council of the Blind, and the United States Association for Blind Athletes-Missouri Chapter, Inc., a 501(c) organization.
Athletes and volunteer coaches will share a week that provides memories and friends for a lifetime. Activities include specialized sports such as goal peers and be successful. A camp setting is able to offer children the instruction and tools to learn how to become active members of their schools and communities. These camps are designed to provide developmental support for children who are visually impaired. Each Camp Abilities is a separate entity with its own Director, insurance, and organizational support.
Camp Abilities was started in 1996 at the college of Brockport by Dr. Lauren J. Lieberman and Dr. Monica LePore. Since 1996, Camp Abilities staff has helped start camps in Pennsylvania, Arizona, Alaska, Maryland, Iowa, Florida, Toronto, Long Island, Puerto Rico, Georgia, Texas, Connecticut, Oregon, and Guatemala, Utah and many other places. Now we have the first one in Missouri.
Coaches can be graduate and undergraduate students from all over the world. These coaches can be recruited from professional preparation programs including adapted physical education, vision specialist, and special education.
Volunteers of all ages, including high school and college students, can serve as assistants and coaches. Previous campers can be recruited as counselors-in-training to gain leadership skills and they are the role models to encourage the campers to believe that they can achieve. Another special feature is that athletes who are visually impaired are invited to participate as specialists, role models, and guest speakers.
The campers stay overnight in the dorms at Missouri School for the Blind and use the sports facilities for all activities except for beep baseball. Beep baseball will be played on the soccer fields of St. Louis University. The sports will change from year to year.
There will be activities every night. Activities such as game night, bowling, descriptive movies, and a social mixer.
On Friday we will have an awards ceremony.
Pictures and videos will be posted to our website daily so that parents can view the progress of their athletes.
Our sponsors help to make this a successful camp. We would like to thank them.
StL Firing Squad Beep Baseball Team
A.G.A.P.E. Council of the Blind
Missouri School for the Blind
Geoffery Barney, MSB Superintedent
St. Louis University - Adam Brock, Admin. Sec-Department of Campus Recreation
United States Association of Blind Athletes (USABA) Missouri Chapter Inc. - Tom Culliton, President of Missouri Chapter
Hawkins Financial Service K.C. - William Hawkins,
If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to Camp Abilities St. Louis, make checks payable to: USABA Missouri Chapter Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization.
Mailed to USABA Missouri Chapter Inc.
6714 Scanlan Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63139