Special summer camp provides opportunities for kids with disabilities


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE)- Registration is underway for a one of a kind summer camp. It’s giving kids with physical disabilities the chance to do activities that they never thought they could do.

For Nick Bertescher, using the adaptive bike is his favorite part of going to summer camp.

It’s just one of the many sports aside from basketball, rock climbing and kayaking that kids can do at the Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation’s “Camp Adventure.”

The foundation’s funding helps the program give kids with physical disabilities the opportunity to do activities that may be a challenge.

“It’s specially tailored for kids with special needs so that they can do things that they didn’t think they could, that their parents didn’t think they could do,” Elizabeth Bertescher, Nick’s mother said.

Nick’s mom will admit she was a little apprehensive about taking her son to an adaptive sports summer camp. Nick suffered a traumatic brain injury and a brain tumor which affected his balance and strength.

“I was like, he’ll just be mowed over by the crowd because sports aren’t his thing,” said Bertescher.

But those fears were put to rest after Nick got home from his first day more excited than he’s ever been.

“It’s something that he now looks forward versus sitting at home during his summer break,” said Bertescher.

“Camp Adventure” is a week-long summer camp program that runs through the month of June.

It’s been operating for about 15 years and is the only one of its kind here in Albuquerque.

But it’s not just about sports. Camp officials say kids also participate in activities like robotics, arts and crafts, and Nick’s favorite, the egg drop.

“They can push themselves, try things they haven’t tried before. We really try to focus on each child having the most successful camp experience as possible,” said Jeff Hoehn, executive director.

The deadline to register for the camp is May 30, so parents still have time to sign their kids up. There are two week-long camps for different age groups.

The first week, June 5-9 is for kids ages 6 to 12. The second camp, June 12-16 is for those ages 13 to 19. Both camps take place at La Cueva High School. The cost for the camp is $50, but no camper is turned away, regardless of their ability to pay.

Each camp is staffed by qualified nurses, physical therapists and instructors to assist the kids.

For more information, click here.

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