Society for Disabled Children
Serving Special Needs Children in Kern County Since 1947
Mission Statement

To identify, develop and deliver programs and services that create growth opportunities to children with special needs.

History

Camp Blue Jay was established in 1975 to provide children who were physically disabled with cerebral palsy, spina bifida, MS, or amputations an opportunity to experience a residential summer camp program. Since its inception, Camp Blue Jay has strived to accommodate children with a wide range of disabilities.

In 2001 Camp Blue Jay expanded its enrollment to include children with speech and hearing impairments, arthritis, cognitive disabilities in the area developmentally delayed, down syndrome and neurological condition such as epilepsy and seizure disorders that are medically controlled.

In 2011 Camp Blue Jay grew again and began to enroll children with a diagnosis on the autism spectrum who were high functioning in a case by case basis.

In 2016 Camp Blue Jay made history again as we opened our program to children who have learning disabilities. Another first was our venture to a new camp facility. Our new host became Camp Ocean Pins in beautiful Cambria. Located on the central coast of California. Camp Ocean Pines sits on thirteen acres of Monterey Pine Forest that overlooks the ocean shore. They are ACA Certifies and more than meets the needs of our unique campers.

Benefits of Camp 

Perhaps the most beneficial aspect of our summer resident camp program for children with disabilities is the sense of growth and accomplishment felt by campers and staff alike. In their short time together they develop understand and respect for one another. Many new and lasting friendships have begun during camp. It is truly a time to learn about nature and humanity. The Camp Blue Jay experience benefits’ our children with disabilities because we have an established set of obtainable goals, objective, and outcomes.

Goals: To increase each participant’s…
  • Confidence and self-esteem
  • Social Skills and making friends
  • Independence and leadership qualities 
  • Willingness to try new things and be adventurousness in a safe environment 

Objective: To appreciate that proper nutrition and physical activities are positive personal choices to be achieved and maintained

Objective: By the end of the camp experience, each participant will..

  • Have the opportunity to make healthy eating choices in their nutritional intake at every meal, and to be able to describe why having options are important.
  • Experience and participate in outdoor physical activities, and be able to describe information they learned about fitness and physical health (hydration, sunscreen safety, and stretching)

Objective: To recognize the worth of all persons, and to work for inter-group understanding. 

Outcomes: By the end of the camp experience, each participant will…

  • Have multiple opportunities to build relationships and be able to describe ways to develop social skills and build friendships. 
  • Participate in a discussion or activity focused on intergroup understanding and be able to express appreciation and discuss the importance of diversity. 
  •  Be able to acknowledge and describe the feelings of another camper on at least two occasions. 

Objective: To develop their capacities for leadership and use those skill responsibly in their own groups and in the camp community life.

Outcomes: By the end of the camp experience, each participant will…

  • Have the opportunity to lead others and demonstrate positive communication skills for encouraging others, sharing ideas, and building friendships. 
  • All adults will see themselves as role models and demonstrate behaviors that are consistent with the mission and goals of Camp Blue Jay.

Objective: To appreciate the beauty, diversity, and interdependence of all forms of life in the natural world and their role in environmental stewardship. 

Outcomes: By the end of the camp experiences, each participant will…

  • Have intentional interactions with the natural world away from technology and “modern” life, and be able to describe a positive experience they had in the natural environment.
  • Be able to give at least three examples of environmental stewardship at camp and share ideas of ways they could improve stewardship at home or school.
  • All staff and camp departments will model and interpret responsible environmental behavior in our actions, planning, and purchasing. 

Camp Blue Jay
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