For Immediate Release
June 26, 2013
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BROCKPORT, NY—Children who are visually impaired, blind, and deafblind experience some life-altering moments at The College at Brockport, State University of New York, during the annual Camp Abilities Brockport developmental sports camp.
They ride bikes and they ride horses, they play baseball and run track, and they perform in archery and judo—all things many of them had previously been told would be impossible for them to do due to their visual impairments. But thanks to Camp Abilities Brockport, which is designed to provide children aged 9-19 with an opportunity to experience and excel in a wide range of physical activities, the impossible has become possible.
“One of the major goals of Camp Abilities is to open children with visual impairments up to the physical and psychological benefits of physical activity,” says Lauren Lieberman, PhD, a Brockport Distinguished Service Professor and the founder of Camp Abilities Brockport. “We want to help them improve their health and well-being.”
Some of the highlights of this year’s camp, which runs from June 23 until June 29, include:
• A town hall discussion with John Robinson, a little person with congenitally amputated arms who is kayaking the Erie Canal from Buffalo to Albany with prosthetic arms. He’s making a stop at Camp Abilities Brockport as part of his journey.
• A new seven-person circular “conference bike” that promotes independent bike riding without needing to worry about maintaining balance or needing vision. The $14,500 bike, of which there are only 350 in the world, was purchased through a grant from the Dorothea Haus Ross Foundation.
• Brockport Psychology Professors Jennifer Ratcliff and Brigitte Pace conducted research on bullying. They surveyed campers about their experiences being bullied, how they’ve grown from those experiences, and how their participation in sport may have helped them overcome it.
The College at Brockport, State University of New York
350 New Campus Drive * Brockport, New York 14420-2931
(585) 395-2754 * FAX (585) 395-2723 * www.brockport.edu