Camp Riley Scholarship
The Meningitis Foundation of America has worked with Camp Riley for several years. Camp Riley is located in the Bradford Woods of southern Indiana. The MFA provides a full camp scholarship to one child between the ages of 8 and 18 who has encountered meningitis. Camp Riley is a summer camp for kids who have varying degrees of physical disabilities. The child is made to feel as if they are just like any other kid, at any other summer camp program, but there are significant differences. Many staff members are doctors, registered nurses, and/or medical students at Riley Children’s Hospital or Indiana University Medical Center in Indianapolis. (Riley is also part of Clarian Health, which includes Methodist and Indiana University Medical Center).
The Team at Camp Riley are highly trained, and very comfortable with complex conditions and demands presented by many of those that attend the camp. The camp is designed to accommodate wheelchairs and other special medical equipment. In fact in some cases, it is specifically designed for it! Many companies send new adaptive equipment to their facilities to road test. They really go out of their way to make the parents of the child understand and feel totally comfortable with the way their child will be attended to and cared for. They have a “newcomer’s weekend” where they invite the entire family of the child to come spend a weekend at the camp, and see how comprehensive their facilities, staff, and programs really are. The emphasis of the program is to work to develop the child’s independence, and encourage them to do perhaps more than they ever thought they could. Many children return to the camp, year after year, and the older campers even have their own prom night each year.
The MFA has committed itself to making camping experiences available, free of charge, to any child between the ages of 8 and 18, who has had an encounter with meningitis. In 2004, the MFA completed our first endowment, ensuring at least one camper per year will have the opportunity to experience benefits of Camp Riley.
For more information, about Camp Riley, visit the Camp Riley website, www.rileykids.org