There are few places where children and adults with disabilities have the opportunity to focus on their abilities, rather than their disabilities. For over 80 years Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp has provided the opportunity for its campers to do just that.
Partnered with the U.S. Forest Service, Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp provides individuals with disabilities the experience of attending a week long recreational camping adventure. Each season MHKC offers a unique opportunity for more than 500 campers ages 11 and older (no upper age limit) to experience the outdoors in its fully accessible 22-acre campsite.
MHKC provides more than 16,000 campers with the magic of camp. Thanks to this life-changing experience, their camper’s quality of life has improved, along with their personal growth in self-esteem, communications, social skills, sense of achievement and independence. Any given day campers can be seen catching fish in our pond, swinging high in the sky on the “Flying Squirrel” adventure course, splashing around in a temperature controlled pool, or perhaps dancing the night away in full costume at an evening event. The camp is located alongside the Zig Zag River. The camp adventure course also includes a rock wall, zip line, a swimming pool, three main lodges, several small cabins, a yurt, and several platform tents. There are also many opportunities for hiking, biking and snowshoeing on the extensive Forest Service trail system that exists around the campsite.
The goal of MHKC is to provide campers with a safe and healthy outdoor environment in which they can challenge themselves and achieve things they never thought possible.
If you’d like to volunteer or learn more about Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp contact them here.
This week at Portland Radio Project we featured Mt. Hood Kiwanis Camp as part of our award-winning Community Voices series. You can listen below to interviews with key members of the organization:
Lynn Clary, MHKC Board President
Allan Cushing, MHKC Program Director, past summer staff, past counselor
Kaleen Deatherage, MHKC Executive Director
Alison Schrupp, Camper Parent