June 27, 2005

Camp for burn survivors is July 17-23

by Paula Davenport

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Registration is open now for young burn survivors who wish to attend a free weeklong summer camp July 17-23 at Southern Illinois University Carbondale's Touch of Nature Outdoor Environmental Center.

The Southern Illinois Camp for Burned Children — also called Camp Adventure — is open to guys and girls ages 8 to 18. There are spaces for 30 campers and registration is sure to fill up fast.

To sign up or ask for more details, call Touch of Nature weekdays at 618/453-1121, ext. 0. Enrollment is first-come, first-serve. Those who register by July 10 receive free prizes.

Campers experience the thrills of caving, rock climbing, swimming, crafts and learn outdoor cooking and survival skills. Teambuilding activities are also offered,

More experienced campers may be eligible for a four-day canoe trip in the Missouri Ozarks.

Firefighters from Southern Illinois and the St. Louis Metro East areas raise money year round to cover the cost of the camp. First offered in 1996, it's the only camp of its kind in the region.

"It's a restorative experience for kids marked by physical and emotional scars from their injuries and treatments," says camp organizer and Carbondale firefighter Dana MacCrimmon.

If you know a child who might benefit from the camp, refer them to the SIUC Touch of Nature Environmental Center.

"At Camp Adventure, kids meet others facing similar challenges and they bond to celebrate their strengths. It's an opportunity for kids to let down their guard and have fun," MacCrimmon says.

Serving others is among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University by the time it celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019.