Camp Carton’s mission is to positively impact the lives of children affected by Tourette Syndrome. Camp Carton is a six-night sleep-away summer camp serving children ages 9–13 years old. The objective for campers is to make lifelong friendships. Camp Carton gives them a stronger sense of who they are and what they are capable of. Camp Carton provides children with TS the opportunity to thrive in an environment where they feel accepted and free to be themselves. The camp slogan is ‘Free to Be Me’.
The program is carefully structured to help build social skills and find success by participating in a variety of activities. This success leads to more self-confidence and independence. Campers are encouraged to let the challenges of day-to-day life at home fade away while they enjoy simply being a kid at camp. For most campers, this is the first time they will meet another child or adult with TS.
Camp Carton’s 2014 inaugural summer served 27 campers. The following year the program doubled in size and continues to grow. There is an overall 1:5 ratio of counselors to campers.
The program takes place in July on the 100+ acre campus of Camp Kinder Ring located on Sylvan Lake in Hopewell, Junction, NY. Camp Kinder Ring is located 90 minutes north of New York City. Most campers are from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire Massachusetts and Maine.
Camp days are jam packed with activities including a variety of individual and team sports, arts and crafts, swimming, boating, music and dance, gymnastics, ropes courses, archery, and much more. Each day also provides a special activity such as the Camp Carton birthday party, movie night, pool luau, campfires, and the amazing Camp Carton Talent Show.
Camp Carton is changing lives. Campers realize that there are others kids just like them. They can relate to each other’s challenges. By week’s end campers develop confidence and social skills that they take back to their home and school environment. They feel more self-assured and accepting of their life with TS.