SARATOGA, N.Y. (NEWS10) – A week-long summer camp in Saratoga Springs is teaching visually impaired children the joy of and benefits of playing sports.
“It’s so much fun,’ says coach Paula Kissenger. “It’s a week that I look forward to every single year.”
At Camp Abilities in Saratoga visually impaired kids and teens come for a one-week sleepaway camp and a chance to play all kinds of sports, from disc golf to judo.
Camp director Tiffany Mitrakos says many campers may be the only visually impaired child at their school.
“Being able to come with other kids just like them for a week is really empowering and rewarding,” says Mitrakos.
“Everyone here is visually impaired, so we all know what each other is going through,” says Camper Schuyler Godwin. “You never have to worry about getting picked on.”
Camp Abilities is a service project started by the Saratoga Lions Club, a charity which focuses on people with sight and hearing problems.
John McDonald, a Lions Club member, says it’s all about serving.
“The focus is really on sight and hearing conservation,” said McDonald, “And diabetes awareness, which is the number one cause of blindness in the world.”
Camp coach Alex Farrell says not only do campers learn sports, they’re also learning life lessons.
Applications for the camp open March 1st. There is usually a waiting list.