Attending summer camp is a rite of passage for many kids. If a child has a disability, though, going to summer camp may be more difficult.
Nicholas is an outgoing 11 year old who loves robotics, engineering, and math. When you meet Nicholas, the first thing you notice is that he is happy. He lights up when he talks about STEM, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Camp Invention – oh, and he was born with myelomeningocele, a form of spina bifida.
Nicholas’s mom, Michele, has always encouraged and supported her son to follow his dreams. So, when he was interested in attending a STEM-themed day camp, she was excited, yet apprehensive. Nicholas requires an accommodation for his medical issue. In the past, she has had a difficult time finding adequate care for Nicholas. “When I called to enroll Nicholas, I talked to Windy [Camp Invention’s director]. She immediately told me, ‘Sure, no problem. We’d love to have him’.”
This is his second summer at Camp Invention in Powder Springs, Ga. Each day of the week he builds solar-powered robot bugs, designs an eco-adventure park and discovers the science of slime. He works in groups with other pre-teens who have no idea of his spina bifida. The camp makes one accommodation for him, and that’s all he needs to participate in one of his favorite activities with some of his favorite people.
Nicholas receives support from Easter Seals’ Champions for Children program. The program assists families who do not meet the eligibility requirements for the Katie Beckett Medicaid program. Nicholas the support he receives for medical supplies, medical co-pays, and this camp! “This is his favorite week of the summer. That includes our trip to the beach,” said Michele.