(Includes excerpts from the July 27, 2013 Press Enterprise article contributed by The Arc of Riverside County)
The Arc of Riverside County has had tremendous success in their monthly event, My Play Club, which brings together children with and without disabilities to participate in fun-filled activities to build friendships and awareness among children throughout the community.
Building on this success, The Arc of Riverside County held its first My Play Club Summer Day Camp for children with special needs and their siblings on June 17-21, 2013 at the Springbrook Clubhouse at Reid Park in Riverside. The event was made possible through collaborations between the Riverside Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department as well as many local organizations and volunteers.
The demand was high for this unique activity as the Camp’s fifty spots filled up in less than 24 hours. In all, 57 young campers were able to attend the event free of charge due to previous fundraising activities.
Each morning the campers would participate in an activity accompanied by their parents. These activities included ceramic art, a basketball clinic with the Special Olympics basketball team, a carnival day, horseback riding at Trax Equestrian Center, and a pool day and barbecue wrapping up the last day of camp.
Some parents could not contain their enthusiasm for the camp. Redlands resident Maia Pawooskar, whose son and daughter attended the camp, said, “We feel privileged to have had the opportunity to participate in this very first very special My Play Club Summer Camp.”
“The overall atmosphere of support, love, friendship and acceptance was so abundantly apparent,” said Michelle Villa, whose 3-year-old son was part of the event. “Our family enjoyed meeting new friends and had a fantastic time. I cried many tears of joy seeing Julian experience camp and interacting so well with his fellow campers and staff,” Villa added.
The My Play Club Summer Camp and the work of The Arc of Riverside County are examples of Riverside’s commitment to being a Unified City by breaking down barriers and building a community with opportunity for people of all backgrounds and abilities.
Read the full article by The Arc of Riverside County as published on July 22, 2013 in the Press Enterprise, here.