Caring for a child with a severe disability — who is medically fragile, highly disruptive or cannot be left alone because he could harm himself or others — can be very stressful. For parents and caregivers whose loved ones have developmental and physical disabilities so complex they must have one-to-one supervision twenty-four hours a day, a respite from care giving is of vital importance.
Operating year-round, the Wisconsin Elks/Easter Seals Respite Camp is unique. Not only are we one of the only programs in Wisconsin that provides overnight, individualized respite care, but we also accept campers with severe and multiple disabilities who have been turned down by many other programs.
Each camper’s around-the-clock individual counselor ensures that the camper’s daily routine is maintained at camp. These highly-trained and caring counselors are assisted by 24 hour program staff and volunteers and are backed up with the expertise of our on-site registered nurse. Parents and caregivers can take comfort in knowing that their loved ones’ needs are being met.
And then the fun begins! Because of the one-to-one care Respite Camp provides, activities can be carefully tailored to meet the recreational, social and emotional needs of each and every camper.
Campers can take part in tandem bike and tractor-trailer rides, enjoy swimming and nature hikes, and experience the thrill of our high ropes course. A variety of sports and games are offered (on rainy days and in cold weather, we have a gym full of equipment so that the fun is uninterrupted), and campers also enjoy our accessible playground with swings, a sandbox and climbing equipment. There are field trips as well, to pumpkin patches and zoos and attractions in nearby Wisconsin Dells.
Elks Respite Camp also provides a specialty program for individuals with Asperger Syndrome or High-Functioning Autism.
Siblings or buddies ages 7-14 are welcome to attend with a camper anytime.