Blogs

CONGRATULATIONS ERICA!!!On Friday, February 3rd, 2016, I attend the Motionball gala with my friend and Special Olympic athlete Erica who was an assistant for 2016 Camp Diversability.

This event is held, once a year and about 25, or so, of all the Special Olympic athletes are specially selected to attend as VIP’s. 

There are 5 different districts and Erica is part of the Greater Toronto District.

The Motionball Gala is a fundraiser which creates awareness that everyone should be included no matter what.   Special Olympics is pretty amazing because these special athletes get opportunities to be involved in any sport they choose. These opportunities offer the athletes support from family, friends, spectators and community.  They also receive a major boost in confidence.

Most of the athletes I spoke to had medals around their neck from many different sports.  I can’t imagine what the parents have to go through to get them to all the practices!!! Kudos to them!  

Erica has been a special olympic athlete for 3 years and is part of a swim team.  She practices once a week, as well, she goes to swim meets a couple times a year.  Her swimming specialties are breast stroke and back stroke.

She won a talent contest last month and was crowned the Motionball Idol Winner. This gave her the opportunity to sing a song at the Gala with the feature band called In Living Colour.  She blew me away.  She is not only a talented swimmer, she is a talented singer as well!!  She was so natural on stage and really let her personality shine through her performance. 

The event was phenomenal, with full sit-down dinner, several bands we could dance to, we got to meet the amazing special athletes, there were about 6-700 supporters at the event and we were treated like VIPs.  This turned out to be a night we won’t ever forget.

The event was held at the Liberty Grand in the Exhibition grounds and was stunning! The entertainment was incredible.

The whole Camp Diversability team is so proud of you Erica!

7 thoughts on “Blogs”

  1. FUNDRAISING EFFORT A SUCCESS, BUT NOT IN THE WAY WE EXPECTED:

    Tuesday, June 28, 2016, eight of us went to Yonge and Eglinton to do some fundraising for Camp DiversAbility and this what transpired from that event:

    Most of the following is what was sent to one of our fundraiser’s family:

    “I continue to be amazed by your brother. He came to help us out on Wednesday. It was no small feat. I saw him back-up towards the wall. Most of us were just standing there, looking at each other. We were all pretty scared to go out there and ask for financial support for the camp. We knew if we didn’t take this first step, we wouldn’t potentially have a camp.

    I explained to him how it works and he came and stood beside me. But he could not look up. He kept telling me that he is rehearsing his words. I could hear him saying something in a soft voice and saw him trying so hard, like he was digging it out from the depths of his being. I kept encouraging him and told him that it did not matter if he said anything or not, just his presence there, was enough help.

    All individuals can stand up and be counted in our community, and even, possibly, go above and beyond expectations.

    Shortly after, we split up the group and he, “K” and I moved to the other side of the street. This time there were only three of us. I would say the script for the announcement, out loud, to the approaching crowd, each time, and then he thought of an idea! He would echo my last word several times after I finished saying it, like and echo. This gave him the confidence to hear his voice out loud, then he started to get comfortable with that, he decided, at that point, that he would say what I was saying at the same time I was saying it, we got into quite a rhythm. We teased each other and left a few words out to mess each other up. He figured out how to get me pretty messed up! Then low and behold he started to let his voice ring out loud. Then there was no stoping him!

    I tell you, we did not collect as much funding support as we expected but to hear his voice ring out proud was such and amazingly rich reward. Just that was worth all the work we did that day!

    Most of us there had a similar experience and it made the day magical.

    We all got a taste of what it feels like to speak up for what want and what we believe in.

    Thank you for your efforts, dear man, you truly are a special person!

    And as it turned out, we connected with a group of private people and companies who took care of our needs and supported us financially. We can not tell you what a great gift that was to us, and how grateful we are that we could breathe at night, not having to have to worry about finances and be able to focus on all the other volumes of work to make this beautiful project happen.”

  2. WHAT IS ON YOUR MIND?

    Is there a Camp DiversAbility “coming out of my “shell” story you would like to share with us?

    Forward your discoveries, stories or anything you would like to post to: campdiversability@rogers.com.

  3. MICHAEL MOON CONCERT:

    Last night, July 6, 2016, Yvonne the Swan, and some of the campers and their families, went to a Michael Moon concert at Bathurst and Sheppard at the Barry Zuckerman Ampitheatre. It was such a perfect night with an amazing performer who is near and dear to Unicamp’s heart because he has camped many years there. He has won awards for his songs creating awareness for healing of the earth and has written about 500 songs, in total, so far. We are so proud of him. We danced under the stars and enjoyed the most magical evening together. It was the perfect pre-camp gathering!
    http://www.thetempleofsound.com
    Thank you all.

  4. CAMP DIVERSABILITY:

    August 8-13, 2017 – Mulmur, Ontario

    This opportunity is specifically geared to high functioning, independent, motivated, adults, with special needs, or as we like to say “alternate abilities” to gather together to inspire each other.

    This is not a camp, as you would know a camp to be, it is a series of workshops, in a smaller group, over a week long period, to give the participant time to learn leadership skills through fun activities like drama, music, arts and dance.

    We will be using what comes up, within the group, naturally and organically, to teach and learn from each other how to take our attitudes, skills and actions to the next level, to or towards leadership.

    This camp is set up in a circle format so everyone has their input. Everyone has gifts to share and teach others.

    This is a very special opportunity based in a conscious community, eco village, campground.

    It is brought to you by a strong volunteer effort. This means that those bringing this to you, are motivated from the heart, they are here because they see the bigger picture and they are here to learn as well.

    This is just like the “Community Build” you may see on television, instead of building houses we are assisting with the building of people and community.

    We have received some gracious donations from companies who love what we are doing and are supporting us with their hard earned dollars, we are able to lower the campers fee to $250.00 for the week (this includes the programs, lodging and 3 vegetarian meals a day, snacks and hydration included)

    You can contact us at campdiversability@rogers.com, don’t forget to give your name and telephone number so we can provide more information.

  5. FEBRUARY 2017 DIRECTORS MEETING:

    February 25th, 2017 the Camp Diversability Directors met in an official boardroom, downtown, thanks to Liz who provided the space. It was a great experience for everyone to see where most board meetings take place. The Directors were updated on all topics on the agenda and had a chance to introduce themselves to three new mentors who will have the chance to be voted in on the next meeting.

    We had discussed having an Indigenous theme at the camp and inviting someone from the Mulmur area or close by to speak to us about how community and leadership works with their culture. The boys originally asked to try to put up a tent and this is turning into erecting a teepee. So we are currently manifesting a teepee.

    They also decided to have their own special talent show. This will be a challenge for them to orchestrate from start to finish on their own, with minimal assistance from the mentors. They are up for the challenge.

    We spoke about our camper drive to get new campers which is launching next week and we also spoke about the donation drive. This is now on the DSAT website and community who wishes to support this initiative can do so by going to DSAT.CA, Click on the ACTIVITY tab and go to Camp Diversability. There will be a donation link there. It will generate a charitable tax receipt.
    Payment can be made by electronic deposit, cash or cheque.

    Everyone was asked to forward stories of experiences they have had with leadership that they wish to share on this website’s blog.

    We spoke about our need for bussing.

    Visiting Habitat for Humanity and Re store to find windows. 4’X 3′ or 4’X 4′ side sliders with a screen. We need many of them, minimum 8 qty, max 36.

    We are looking for someone to put a 2017 season camp video together for marketing on social media.

    Scott will be videoing next meeting to make an updated video for our front website page.

    Can’t wait for our next meeting April 1, 2017.

  6. VIDEO ON DIVERSABILITY:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tn8ZSNjblLs

    We are all humans having a human experience, we are all different and there is no more “normal”.

    “Normal” was a group of people who were unaware, in judgement and missing out on the beauty all around them.

    With exposure to diverse people we now know that every one of us brings unique and magical gifts to the collective. Each and every individual is important, even the “rough diamonds”. They show us what we don’t want and help us to shoot “rockets of desire” out to what we do want to create in this world.

    What does it take for us to focus on the gifts and see each individual as a whole being and not spend all our time and energy focussing on faults or lack.

    TIP: The effort and concern is admirable but if you feel the impulse to “help” someone, make sure you ask them first. Most likely, you would not want some “good samaritan” jumping in on what you are doing without asking you first.

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Leadership Camp for Adults with Special Needs