Host Organization Details
Camp Hope Foundation
In 1979 (designated the International Year of Persons with Disabilities) a study conducted by the Institute of the Child and Family, reported that 12% of the Ecuadorian population suffered from some form of disabling condition – mental, emotional or sensory origin. This statistic is significantly higher than the world wide estimate of 10% reported the same year by the World Health Organization.
Due to high birth rates and strained economic situations in Ecuador, the care of the disabled population has not been made a priority. Currently there are only 40 special education schools and rehabilitation facilities in Ecuador. These schools serve less than 1% of persons with special needs in Ecuador.
Behind these alarming facts lies the more tragic reality that education is continually denied to physically disabled children of normal intelligence due to handicap inaccessibility in schools and a lack of public understanding of the intellectual abilities of these children. As a result of this appalling situation, the majority of these children remain uneducated, unattended, dependent and captive in their homes.
The Camp Hope Foundation accepts children afflicted with all types of disabilities including: muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy and other different forms of paralysis. The goal of the camp is to encompass both the physical and spiritual realms of the child by providing experiences which would promote social, physical, emotional and spiritual growth.
Their programs include swimming, handicrafts, sports, Bible stories, singing and one-on-one interaction time for both small and large groups. The activities are individually adjusted for each child's needs so that everyone, despite their disability, can participate.
Since the formulation of the first camp, the foundation has been fortunate enough to add 2 more camps; one for teenagers 13-17 years old and one for young adults between the age of 18-30 years.
The successful completion of the camps brought about the realization for the need of year-round care for handicapped children. This realization was what sparked the formulation of the Camp Hope Foundation Centre that offers attention, recreation, rehabilitation, regular academic education and special needs education, as well as vocational resources and spiritual support. The centre's program also includes regular home visitations and family counselling.
The majority of families involved with the Camp Hope Foundation live in poverty and are unable to contribute even marginally to the programs. Thus, the majority of the funds for their programs come from donations of organizations.
Does this organization have any religious affiliations?
Camp Hope is a Christian Foundation, but there are no religious requirements for volunteers.
In 1983, "The Camp", staffed by missionaries, was the first in Ecuador. Although the majority of the staff had prior experience working with children with special needs, all staff members were required to complete an intensive two day orientation that focused on the goals of the program and taught the staff members about the special needs of the children. The first pilot camp had seventeen children ranging in age from six to sixteen.
In 1990, the Ecuadorian government recognized Camp Hope as a legal, non profit, charitable Christian Foundation. With this status, Camp Hope is able to work with international organizations and receive donations without having to pay a duty tax. Furthermore, it enables Camp Hope to receive volunteers who help with the development of the different programs of Camp Hope and participate in projects funded by the Ecuadorian Government.
Camp Hope Foundation would appreciate any donations such as:
Clothes for children ages 4 months to 17 years of age Toys Any school supplies and materials Notebooks Coloured pencils etc.