CSU, Chico News

Ability First Sports Camp Celebrates Its 25th Year

Date: 06-15-2011

Kathleen McPartland
Public Affairs
Laura McLachlin
Co-director, Ability First Sports Camp

California State University, Chico’s Ability First Sports camp, a weeklong overnight camp for youth aged 8–17, celebrates its 25th year this summer. Thirty-five youth with disabilities will come from California, Nevada and Oregon for the camp that will run June 19–25. They will stay in a campus residence hall and participate in competitive athletics, recreational programming, and health and nutrition education.

Athletes participate in wheelchair basketball, tennis, soccer and rugby, aquatics, waterskiing and rock climbing. This year, new water ski equipment was purchased through private donations and with the help of HO Sports Company, Inc.

In addition to athletics, there are many opportunities for socializing and making new friends during the week of the camp. Day counselors and night counselors are assigned to each camper or group of campers, depending on disabilities, and their role is critical in enabling overnight stays and a positive experience. Counselors and campers alike participate in evening activities, including a scavenger hunt, karaoke and a skit night.

The staff for Ability First consists primarily of students enrolled in the Therapeutic Recreation and Adaptive Physical Education programs at CSU, Chico. The students get unique training in applying theoretical concepts in a residential camp setting.

“In addition to our regular program offerings, we have expanded this year to include golf, ropes course activities and a super heroes theme,” said Laura McLachlin, co-director of the camp. “We are so fortunate to have a community, the University and various donors who believe in and support our vision to provide a quality sports camp experience for our young athletes.”

For more information, please contact the Ability First Sports Camp office at 530-588-0335.