Camp Chronicle 2017

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Table of Contents Letter from the Director...................................... 3 Camper Highlights ........................................... 4-7 Staff Highlights .............................................. 8-13 Volunteer Highlight . ......................................... 14 Summer Camp Staff & Volunteers .................... 16 Camp Royall Wish List . ..................................... 20 Year-Round Camp Opportunities . .................... 21 Donor Highlight ................................................ 22 You Can Help..................................................... 24 Scholarship Donors . ......................................... 25

CAMP CHRONICLE The Camp Chronicle is published by the Autism Society of North Carolina for campers, parents, supporters, and the counselors and professionals who work with Camp Royall. Content: Amy Seeley and Lesley Fraser Photographers: Kim Rubish, Ashura Colquhoun, and Olivia Hedges Editor: Amy Seeley | Graphic Designer: Erika Chapman For more information, contact: Lesley Fraser | Camp Royall 250 Bill Ash Road, Moncure, NC 27559 P 919-542-1033 | F 919-542-6343

505 Oberlin Road, Suite 230 • Raleigh, NC 27605-1345 919-743-0204 • 800-442-2762 • Fax: 919-743-0208

Letter from the Director Greetings Campers, Families, Staff, and Friends of Camp Royall! I am excited to present to you the 2017 Camp Chronicle! Summer 2017 marks our 21st summer at our Camp Royall location, and the 46th installment of Summer Camp through the Autism Society of North Carolina. Summer 2017 was another amazing summer, with 315 campers here for Residential Camp and 79 Day Campers, from age 4 to 69 years old, from 51 counties across North Carolina. Each week this summer brought with it new faces, old friends, exciting challenges, and new friends to be made. We welcomed many new campers to Camp Royall this summer. One family sent three siblings: an older sister, Elizabeth, and twin boys, James and John. We loved meeting this awesome family and are excited to share their story on page 4. We have been offering a separate Day Camp program for three years, and campers can sign up for multiple weeks each summer. One of these campers, Nolan, came for three weeks this year, bringing a lot of energy, positivity, and silliness to every day. Nolan is an entertainer and a joy to have around! You can read about his adventures on page 6. What makes each summer the best it can be is our hardworking staff, around 120 people total. Each one of them comes with different experiences, energy, and a whole lot of enthusiasm! We had staff from nine different states, as well as Puerto Rico, Japan, and India, giving everything they had to give our campers the summer camp experience they deserve. Ten of our staff members have siblings with autism, and seven were on the autism spectrum themselves. One of our Counselors, Andi, who is on the spectrum, was a perfect match for each of her campers. Andi shared her kind, caring, calm, and patient personality each week. See page 12 to hear from Andi. Mitzi was another Counselor who came to camp with a unique perspective. She is a business student; the majority of our Counselors are typically studying something in a related field. Mitzi did not grow up around individuals with autism, but after a chance encounter, decided to spend her summer learning about them. She thinks everyone should learn to understand people with autism and how to support them and their families. See page 8 for her story. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all of our generous donors who supported Camp Royall this summer. We gave a record amount of scholarship funding, over $200,000, supporting 197 (half of our total number of campers) to attend this summer. Please see page 22 for a highlight on Cash Bland, an inspiring camper who for his birthday raised enough money to send three other campers to Camp Royall this summer! Cash is one of the most generous and giving individuals you would be lucky enough to meet. Be sure to take notice of the great opportunities for you and your camper to get involved at camp all year long. Check out page 21 for more info about all of our year-round programs. We hope to see you and your camper back at Camp Royall soon! Sending love and best wishes from Camp Royall,

Lesley • 3


Rasnake Family With four children in the house, one of whom is homeschooled, Robin Rasnake doesn’t get many chances for one-on-one time with any of them. But this summer, her older daughter and her twin boys each spent time at Camp Royall. For John and James, 8, it was their first camp experience and their first time away from their Concord home overnight. For Elizabeth, 13, it was the first time she had gone to camp in more than six years – last time, the camp’s staff asked her family to take her home after just one night. “We don’t have family that helps on overnights or anything like this,” Robin said. “We knew that our children were in safe hands, and we weren’t going to get a call to pick them up.” While Elizabeth attended the camp week for her age group, Robin and her other three children spent time talking about the upcoming school year. When the twins were at camp, Robin and her daughters were able to have girls’ nights and connect without the boys around. “To get this opportunity to spend time with just a few of the kids, where they felt individual attention, was wonderful. We also see the growth of what happens when the kids go away. We see how much more independent they can become, and it gives us hope for the future.”

“We also see the growth of what happens when the kids go away. We see how much more independent they can become, and it gives us hope for the future.”

Elizabeth said her favorite part of camp was making new friends among teens who were just like her. Robin said Elizabeth broke out of her shell and seemed like a different person when her family picked her up, “one that doesn’t look over her shoulder at what others are doing and knows that it is OK to be silly and have fun and not worry about what others are saying or doing.” India Boyd, who was Elizabeth’s camp counselor, said Elizabeth was part of a group of 8-10 teens who became close during the week and stuck together as a group. John also learned that there were other kids like him in the world. “John seems to feel that no one else knows what he

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is going through and no one understands him,” Robin said. “He said there was another boy at camp, and he was just like him.” John’s favorite parts of camp were the pool and playground. Since the boys have come home, Robin has noticed that they are less attached to their electronic toys. “They were thinking of creative ways to do things around the house and figuring out which board games needed to be played,” she said.

ow didn’t kn t At first I place, bu is h t t u abo ask going to m a I w no tay if I can s my mom forever. -Camper

James said his favorite part of camp was the playground, especially the tire swing. James overcame his fear of going in the deeper areas of the pool on the first day, and gained confidence throughout the week, said his counselor, Hannah Will. “He’s was really into trying everything.” James learned that you can still have fun even when challenging situations occur, Robin said. James also learned that he doesn’t need her around all of the time, she said. “James is such a sweetheart,” Hannah said. We hope the Rasnake family will enjoy many more summers at Camp Royall! • 5


Nolan Carson Nolan Carson runs toward the pool – not too fast – looking over his shoulder to make sure his counselor is following him. He is, and so Nolan jumps in, a big grin on his face. Soon, the 9-year-old has recruited two other boys to join him as well, all of them jogging up to the edge and taking small jumps off the side. When one of the boys stops and wanders away to the other side of the pool, Nolan brings him back to the game.

“Camp Royall has increased Nolan’s confidence, independence, and willingness to try new things,” his mom said. “I can tell that he feels valued for his contribution.”

It is a scene you might find at any camp, but at Camp Royall, it means so much more. Camp Royall gives Nolan a chance to interact with other children and develop friendships, his mom said. “The Camp Royall experience has changed Nolan’s whole self-concept and his sense of who he is and what he can do,” Angela Carson said. “He is engaging in more teamwork activities. His interaction with the world around him in everyday settings has increased and improved.”

This was Nolan’s second year of attending Day Camp, where his counselor, Sam Hedges, says he has been really outgoing and loves to lead activities, especially in the music room and at Shady Circle. His mom said even at home, he loves to sing, dance, and put on “one-man shows.” “If you ask Nolan what he can do, he can go on for several minutes,” Angela said. “His response when you ask him what he can’t do is, ‘I can do everything!!’” “Camp Royall has increased Nolan’s confidence, independence, and willingness to try new things,” his mom said. “I can tell that he feels valued for his contribution.” Sam said that as Nolan’s first week at camp progressed, he became more comfortable and interacted more with the other campers. Nolan also has recently expressed his love for nature, his mom said, so the hiking trails at Camp Royall are another

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favorite. On a recent day, he was one of the first day campers to clean up his snack when asked and head off on the hike with his counselor. “Camp Royall has created happy memories that will stay with Nolan throughout his life,” his mom said. “It gave me a peace of mind, knowing that Nolan was in a safe, loving, and supervised environment.” Camp Director Lesley Fraser said the staff had enjoyed having Nolan for three weeks this summer. “Each week he has brought so much joy and energy to camp, making it a better place for everyone around him,” Lesley said. “The Day Camp counselors at Camp Royall are used to seeing campers return week to week, which is a big part of the why they love their jobs. Counselors are often requesting to be with their favorite campers again and again, and Nolan is certainly one who is always in high demand! As we continue to get to know Nolan, and Nolan continues to get to know Camp, his growth in confidence, friendships, and fun are always very clear.” We hope Nolan will return to make more memories for years to come!

re eke, whe Z “ : r lo e Couns ess come in p p a h s doe from?” ess : “Happin Camper p om Cam comes fr Royall!” • 7


Mitzi Flores Nepomuceno Don’t ask Mitzi Flores Nepomuceno who her favorite camper was this summer – she won’t choose! Mitzi, who is 21, spent the last summer before her senior year at Winston-Salem State University at Camp Royall, learning about autism, one camper at a time. “I think this is the best experience I’ve ever had,” Mitzi said. You might think Mitzi plans a career in special education, or perhaps autism treatment. But she is a finance major and loves it. She just thinks everyone should have the experience of working with people with autism so they will understand them. “Everybody should learn how to treat people with autism,” Mitzi said. “At the end of the day, they’re people.” Mitzi said she loved going to the pool and playing with her campers, and she even loved when they were feeling a little homesick, because she got more snuggle time. Our campers were lucky that Mitzi decided to come to Camp Royall this summer! “Mitzi was a wonderful counselor to all of her campers,” Camp Director Lesley Fraser said. “She had a natural ability to connect with them quickly and really enjoyed each of her campers for who they are. Mitzi showed awesome strengths in patience, kindness and attention to her campers’ needs.” Erica Smith, mom to 9-year-old camper Briann, said, “We cannot tell you how thankful we were and are for Mitzi’s unconditional love and care of our child.” Briann’s world is “colorful, loud, scary, annoying, and unpredictable,” her mom said. She can be very anxious and was nervous about going to camp. “Upon arrival at camp, we met our new friend Mitzi. She immediately warmed our hearts. She spoke quietly and gently, but was truly excited to meet us.” During the week, Briann called her parents one night to say that she had done the zapline. “As parents, we were emotional. This was a huge undertaking fear-wise for Briann,” Erica said. “Mitzi

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had also found a few other friends for Briann to help with while at camp. That again was unbelievable because we hadn’t ever had anyone understand the part of our child that likes to be a helper.” Mitzi said that when campers were scared to try new things but said they would do them with her, their trust meant a lot to her.

to more fun It ’s way at side here play out video n to play a h t p m ca games. -Camper

“She had a natural ability to connect with them quickly and really enjoyed each of her campers for who they are. Mitzi showed awesome strengths in patience, kindness and attention to her campers’ needs.” Briann’s mom said that the pair’s bond was clear when they picked Briann up. “They laughed and smiled together,” Erica said. “Briann had a genuine emotional connection! For our child, that is huge.” Once she was home, Briann told her parents that she missed Mitzi and asked whether she could call her and visit her. “I know that I will always remember my campers,” Mitzi said. “It’s touching when they say they’re going to miss you. I think that’s the best reward anyone could have.” • 9

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Andi Jones This was Andi Jones’s first summer working at Camp Royall, but she brought a special understanding with her. Andi, a 20-year-old UNC-Greensboro junior, is also on the spectrum. “We loved having Andi on the team this summer,” said Camp Director Lesley Fraser. “She had an amazing ability to adapt to each of her campers’ needs.”

“Andi brought a calm presence and positive energy throughout the summer. She showed unconditional positive regard for all of her campers, and her love for them was clear.”

Andi said she felt truly connected with her campers Andi said working at Camp Royall taught her a lot and often ended up having heart-to-heart talks with about herself and other people. “I feel that I am a them. “It was so important to completely different person now them to find someone that they when I first arrived – more “Andi brought a calm than felt understood them,” she said. confident, empathetic, and secure presence and positive in the idea that I have found my Andi was able to relate to some purpose in life. This has been an energy throughout the absolutely amazing experience of her campers’ struggles and tell them that she, too, had been summer. She showed that I wouldn’t change for anything there. And like everyone at Camp in the world.” Royall, she provided acceptance. unconditional positive “I think it’s really important that At UNC-Greensboro, Andi is regard for all of her they have someone that they majoring in psychology and sign trust, who respects them for who campers, and her love language. She hopes to work as they are rather than trying to make a counselor for people who are for them was clear.” them be someone they’re not.” on the spectrum, are deaf, or are LGBT, saying she sees many “I love how Camp Royall manages to bring us all commonalities in those communities. She especially together – not only campers, or people on the admires the way people who are deaf see themselves spectrum, but each and every staff member or as part of a culture, not having a disability, she said. volunteer,” Andi said. “We are all one close-knit group They believe that they are entirely functional and of people, each of whom shares a common goal and is just need resources to succeed. in some way endeavoring to make the world a better place. I love when anything here manages to create Andi first came to Camp Royall on a service trip with a smile on the face of one of my campers, when they UNCG’s Office of Leadership and Service Learning and can truly feel like they fit in somewhere, or can be then worked at Mini Camps during the past year. She themselves without having to fear judgement.” also serves as vice president of an organization called Spectrum at UNCG, which does volunteer work and Lesley said Andi’s demeanor reassured her campers. fosters autism awareness and acceptance. 12 • Camp Chronicle 2017

She said she hopes to teach people to assume competence when talking to people with autism. “Don’t talk to them as if they’re not people, or as if they’re younger than they are. Treat them as fully capable, and then if they’re not, help them achieve that instead of assuming they can’t.” Andi certainly lives out her advice at Camp Royall and we hope she will keep returning!

I truly lov touche e Camp Roya d ll! It ha s and I c my life for th ould n e bette ot r to exp erienc be more tha e n kf su wonde rful, an ch a welcom ul d beau ing, The ca ti mpers are all ful place! and ta s o incre ught m dible eh apprec iate life ow to truly !

- Abi V , Day C

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Ned Weeks

Ned Weeks loves Camp Royall so much that he signed on as a volunteer this summer. Every morning, he took the bus to Camp Royall from his new home in Chapel Hill and worked from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., mainly in the kitchen and dining hall. “Ned was a wonderful addition to our summer team this year,” Camp Director Lesley Fraser said. “I have been lucky to get to know Ned after five years of his attending our Adult Retreat program. We were so excited when he made the move to Chapel Hill so that he could be closer to camp and spend more time here. Ned has been a dedicated and hard-working volunteer.” Ned’s love for Camp Royall is obvious as he moves about the dining hall after lunch, taking care to wipe down each chair and table, removing the crumbs left behind by happy campers. He is quick with a chuckle and always smiling. “Ned was excited to help with any task,” Lesley said. “He took pride in his work and was a positive part of everyone’s day.” Why does he love Camp Royall so much? “I know everybody here,” Ned said. “I have fun here.” Ned attended his first retreat at Camp Royall in 2012. He had often been lonely and sad since he graduated from high school and saw his friends move on while he stayed at home, said his mother, Donna Weeks. “From the moment he arrived at Camp Royall, he felt instant acceptance and excitement about the adventurous weekend ahead of him,” she said. “When we returned to bring him home, although sad to leave, he was bubbling over with enthusiasm and filled with stories of the friends he had made with campers and counselors. Since then, he has been at camp every time the doors have opened for adult retreats and during the summers.” “Camp Royall has made and continues to make a profound difference in Ned’s life,” Donna said. “Out in the regular world, he has tried hard to fit in, and the strain of it often showed in his demeanor. Camp is a safe, loving, accepting, and fun place where he belongs and is immensely happy. For Ned, Camp Royall is the ultimate place to make friends and to be a good friend to everyone.” At the Adult Retreats, Ned enjoys going to Jordan Lake, canoeing, hiking, and doing the zapline, he said. During the summer, he even took walks around camp when it was at its hottest. “I love nature,” Ned said. After growing up in rural Cumberland County, Ned completed two years of coursework in the horticulture program at Fayetteville Technical Community College. He also volunteered at the Cape Fear Botanical Garden, performing maintenance and landscaping tasks, such as raking, pruning, and planting. Ned worked 14 • Camp Chronicle 2017

there Monday through Friday for 16 years and was named their Volunteer of the Year several times. Last spring, he moved into a group home in Chapel Hill, where he lives with friends and receives support to become even more independent and confident, his mother said. “Camp Royall has given Ned numerous experiences in becoming more independent in daily living skills. Among the reasons he tells us that he loves his new home is that it feels to him so much like Camp Royall.”

“When we returned to bring him home, although sad to leave, he was bubbling over with enthusiasm and filled with stories of the friends he had made with campers and counselors.” Ned said he enjoys going to concerts and taking part in other activities with his housemates. Now that Summer Camp is over, he hopes to volunteer with Meals on Wheels. He helped care for his grandparents for many years. “One of his greatest joys is helping others,” his mother said. “He is sensitive and has empathy for how other people are feeling and indeed has such a heart for lifting their spirits. In Ned’s thinking, there is always this question: ‘What can I do to make things easier for someone else?’” Ned certainly lifted spirits during Summer Camp, and we look forward to seeing him at Camp Royall again soon!

le e I am ab s u a c e b mp e I love ca d becom n a e r o m to learn dent. I have en p s so inde ny thing a m d e h s o accompli r and I have als e m is h this sum camp friends t w made ne mp means so Ca r. summe me. much to ity

t Activ Assistan , g g u B l -A Director • 15

2017 Summer Staff Camp Director: Lesley Fraser [10] Assistant Director: Mark Smith [11] Assistant Director: Kristian Page [3] ASNC Property Manager: David Yell [26] Social Recreation Services Director: Sara Gage [21] Facility Staff: Lawson Whitaker [20] James Walsh [18] Ricky Sampson [13] Randy Keck [10] Linda Burgess [9] Ed Wolfram [8] Robin Griffith [7] Al Bugg [5] Cody Norris [4] Nancy Talbert [2] Leah Wolfram [2] Tristan Wolfram [2] Bob Ricci Program Leaders: Kim Rubish [4] Ashura Colquhoun [2] Admin Assistants: Cindy Lodestro [4] Lilliann Vigil [6] Kaity Longo [3] Activity Directors: Kory Morgan [5] Sarah Glick [4] Graham Johnson [4] Tatiana Martinez [4] Eliza Granger [3] Hailey Pister [3] 16 • Camp Chronicle 2017

Curtis Sobie [3] Jade Womble [3] Hunter Atchley [2] Caroline Bartley [2] Tim Connell [2] Hannah Miller [2] Residential Camp Counselors: Laura Belmar [4] Jay Jarrett Morales [4] Delaney Burns [2] Hannah Overcash [2] Michael Shaw [2] Amaris Smith [2] Candace Attwood Emily Bailey Grace Bibus India Boyd Sam Dobbs Marian Easler Mitzi Flores Nepomuceno Abigail Foster Nikeeta Giddings Shaquayla Haddock Becca Hardin Sarah Harrell Andi Jones Mackenzie Lacey Allie Lerner Becca Martin Kelsey Mason

Alexis McLaughlin Karla Morel Calyssa Ponder Samantha Robinson Afia Sarpong McKenna Shaver Mitali Sheth Jake Stanton Tori Strickland Shannon Sweeney Shindo Ute Gaby Valentin Sabrina Vann Hannah Will Day Camp Counselors: Rico Thorpe [5] Sam Hedges [3] Madeline Miles [2] Brittany Miles [2] Britne Podruchny [2] Sybilsue Strivelli [2] Suzie Elliot-Bearce Nicole Fortune Anna Jasper Jeremy Shouse Abigail Valenta Natalia Wittek

Lifeguards: Emily Allen Dean Cannon Taylor Hendriksma Nurses: Tina Harris [7] Kim Sabbagh [6] Cynthia Macalino [4] Shelly Stockton [2] Mel Isner Jessica Lopez Grace Mbugua Dana Stockton Extraordinary Volunteers: We want to recognize those who so generously gave their time to support us through many tireless hours of volunteer work. Your dedication and support was inspirational and very much appreciated! Jeremiah Macalino [5] Mark Sudol [4] Olivia Hedges [3] Erik Rotenberry [2] Betty Camp Michelle Chinn Cannon Warren Croom Mohanapriya Cumaran Siddharth Deviprasad Graycen Horne Ben Huan Cloris Huan

Michelle Kang Kate Kennedy Jessie Kim Scott Lambeth Ben Lipson Janie Newlin Avery Robinson Anna Rotenberry RJ Vaccarelli Nithi Vechalapu Bobo Warren Ned Weeks

Trainers and Consultants: We are extremely grateful to friends of Camp Royall from various parts of the autism community who gave their time and expertise to educate us and guide us throughout the summer so that we might serve our campers with the highest level of care possible. Cassie Ball Olivia Boorom Billi Jo Castevens Emmalee Decker Kelli Garbett Mindy Govan Linda King Thomas Whitney Luffman

Dylan Mathews Carolyn Penn Tara Regan Michelle Scatamacchia Syerra Smith Louise Southern Kate Sugg Jenna Vescio

[ ] indicates how many summers spent working or volunteering • 17

d kid an a t s u I’m j ncoat has my rai ockets! two p er] [Camp

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This has been th e best su could ev mmer I er ask fo r! Meeti friends, n g new being w ith some campers a m azing and also being in that I ca a place ll home. Camp R forever oyall wil be in my l heart an family w d my ill be co ming fo to come r many ! years

- Abi F, R esidentia

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ounselor • 19

I ain’t got no clean underwear! My mom miscounted! [Camper]

Camp Royall Wish List If you want to support Camp Royall through material donations, we would be grateful to receive the following items: Arts and Crafts Wishes: • Construction paper • Glue/glue sticks • Scissors (of all sizes) • Paint (fabric paint, tempera paint, face paint, watercolors, finger paint) • Painting supplies (brushes, small paint containers, watercolor paper) • Pipe cleaners • Glitter • Beads (not too small) and plastic string for beading

• Googly eyes • Stickers • Plain white T-shirts of all sizes (youth small-adult 4XL) • Tie-dye supplies • Dry-erase markers (thin) • Sharpie markers • Markers • Blue painter’s tape • Cardstock (any size or color)

General Program Wishes:

[ ] indicates number of summers on staff

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• Ziploc baggies (sandwich-size and gallon-size) • Address labels (envelope-size, peel and stick) • Postage stamps • Toilet paper • Liquid hand soap • Shaving foam • Hand sanitizer • Baby wipes • Flashlights • Night lights (and bulbs) • Batteries (AA and AAA) • Puzzles (new or like-new) • DVDs (new or like-new)

• Digital timers • Noise-canceling headphones • Velcro dots • Bubble solution • Laminating sheets (to be used in a hot laminator) • TVs with built-in DVD players • Bluetooth speaker system • Digital video camera (preferably weather-proof) • Picnic tables • Paddleboats • Golf carts • 4-wheel-drive pickup truck

Year-Round Fun at Camp Royall Afterschool Program: We offer an Afterschool

Program for school-age children on the autism spectrum during the traditional school year. Trained staff members supervise children in small groups of one staff member per three participants. Participants enjoy outdoor activities, group games, and gym play. The hours are 2:30-6:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday, with some transportation available.

Adult Retreats: Independent adults, ages 18 or older,

Sunday. Supervision at a ratio of 1:1 or 1:2 is provided for all campers during Mini Camp. The program is open to all individuals on the autism spectrum, regardless of age; priority is given to those living at home to provide respite for families.

Fall Camp: Campers ages 4-22 on all levels of the

autism spectrum can join us for a week of residential camp from Sunday, October 15, to Friday, October 20.

with high-functioning autism or Asperger’s Syndrome, can spend time at camp with friends. Week-long and weekend retreats are offered. Participants enjoy camp activities as well as outings in the community, including meals out at local restaurants.

Winter Camp: Winter Camp is open to campers of all

Family Fun Days: Our popular Family Fun Days offer a

Spring Camp: Campers ages 4-22 on all levels of the

chance for families to experience all the joys of camp together. Activities include a cookout, playground, boating, hayrides, zapline, games in the gym, arts & crafts, sensory room, face-painting and hiking trails. During the December Family Fun Day, Santa visits Camp Royall, providing sensory-friendly visits with no waiting!

Family Camping: Come for the Fun Day and then

ages, with priority given to campers living at home. A week of residential camp will run from Wednesday, December 27, until Monday, January 1, 2018. autism spectrum can join us for a week of residential camp from Sunday, March 25, to Friday, March 30, 2018.

Teen Social Groups: Teen Tuesday is a monthly life skills group for independent teens (ages 13-20) with high-functioning autism. The group typically meets on the second Tuesday evening of each month, from 5 to 7:30 p.m.

stay overnight together in our cabins. On Saturday evening, we enjoy a pizza dinner together before a campfire with songs and s’mores! We also provide a light continental breakfast and more time to play at camp on Sunday.

Group Rental: Camp Royall is available for group

Mini Camp Weekends: Mini Camps give campers the

For more information and to register for any of our programs, please visit www.camproyall. org. Questions? Contact us at 919-542-1033 or

chance to enjoy a weekend version of our summer camp program, from Friday evening until noon

rentals, so please consider us for your next birthday party, church outing, family reunion, or corporate event. • 21


Cash Bland Cash Bland has had a lot of amazing birthdays over the years. Cash, who has autism, didn’t have a lot of friends growing up, so his parents used to throw a “Cash Bash” each year and invite all of their friends and co-workers. “The last Cash Bash we had was hundreds of people at my small Durham home with a donated food truck from a fantastic friend and the whole nine yards,” said Cash’s mom, Dawn. “Our friends gave out of the goodness of their hearts and meager pockets to come together and create an amazing support system for this kid.” But none of Cash’s birthdays can compare to his most recent, last April, because for his 13th birthday, Cash raised enough money to provide scholarships to send three other children to Camp Royall for a week!

And of course the friends who had been part of Cash Bashes over the years chipped in and shared the link with their friends and family as well.

“Durham strangers and friends came together and messaged me about how moving this child was and how “Cash’s quest to raise they would be happy to help,” money for scholarships Dawn said. “He was told over and over by people that he was for Camp Royall is making a difference and that inspirational,” said Camp he was an inspiration and that they wished more people were Director Lesley Fraser. like him. Wished more people were like him. Imagine!”

“He is certainly the most generous 13-year -old I have ever met!”

Cash chose the number three in honor of the two best buddies he found at Camp Royall last summer. “He told me he wanted to send three kids to Camp Royall so they would have the chance to find their ‘Three Musketeers,’ their Liam and Matthew,” Dawn said. “OK, I thought. $5,100 it is. This is going to be tough – but we got this.” Cash said he wanted to raise money “to make kids happy, because if they are happy, I feel good.” Cash and his family set up a YouCaring page to raise the money and shared the link on Facebook, 22 • Camp Chronicle 2017

neighborhood listservs, and emails to the media. Cash also talked to everyone about it, his mom said. “He had little flyers that he handed out to strangers on the street and put in coffee shops, etc. He engaged so many new people… I was very proud.”

In the end, Cash raised enough to cover the fees charged by YouCaring and donate $5,100 to the Camp Royall scholarship fund. Well, almost enough. He chipped in the last 37 cents from his own piggy bank! “Cash’s quest to raise money for scholarships for Camp Royall is inspirational,” said Camp Director Lesley Fraser. “He is certainly the most generous 13-year -old I have ever met! It has been a pleasure to get to know him over the past few years of his attending Summer Camp. Cash is kind, caring, thoughtful, and a great friend to whomever he meets.”

Cash said he hopes to do more to support Camp Royall in the future. “You cannot stop his heart of gold,” his mother said. “He has an unstoppable tendency to look for ways to help others, and Camp Royall is very powerful for him.” Cash said he loves meeting people who are like him at camp and making new pals. His mother said she appreciates that the “amazing counselors” have not only the patience, but the energy, to engage him on his interests all week.

“He walks away with so much confidence and ability gained – every time. This place is magic.”

Why does everyone keep saying amazing all the time? [Camper] • 23

You Can Help How Does ASNC’s Camp Royall Change Lives? Camp Royall is accredited by the American Camp Association and is the oldest and largest camp program for individuals of all ages with autism in the world, serving more than 2,000 individuals with autism and their families a year. Camp experiences provide an opportunity for exploration, for making friends, for trying new and exciting activities, and a time for personal growth in independence and confidence. As a result, campers return home with skills once thought unattainable by their families and the ability to make a friend and be a friend.

What Are Camp Royall’s Needs? Camp Scholarships: Providing summer camp scholarships to campers each summer is the most critical need. Due to the additional financial demands of caring for a child with autism, most families are unable to afford the $1,700 cost per week for their child to attend camp and receive the benefits of a week with specialized staff. Fundraising for camp scholarships is a year-round focus. Each year we raise close to $200,000, but it is not enough to help each family in need. Program/Facility Donations: Providing program supplies and maintaining a 133-acre facility is expensive. In-kind and financial donations help offset these costs. Current needs include: a digital video camera (preferably weather-proof), paddleboats, a golf cart, and a pickup truck. Planning for Our Future: As we look to the future and the growing number of children and families who depend on our services, we must expand 24 • Camp Chronicle 2017

the number of campers we are able to serve each week by providing additional sleeping facilities. We are currently assessing the costs and looking at fundraising opportunities for the future.

How Can You Help? More than 89% of every dollar we raise is used for services that directly affect people with autism, and every dollar raised stays within North Carolina, helping people who live and work in our local communities. Contact Kristy White to discuss partnership opportunities that include individual gifts, named scholarships, planned giving, connections to corporations or foundations, and other opportunities to get involved. “Our family has benefitted in so many ways from Camp Royall, but none more so than the friendships that our son has made,” one camper’s mother said. “To be able to go somewhere where he truly connects with friends and counselors alike is a true gift, and I am so incredibly thankful for it. He walks away full of love, confidence, and energy, ready to tackle the school year ahead of him.” We are excited about what is happening today as a result of our efforts. We’re even more excited about what can happen with your help.

Contact Information Kristy White, Chief Development Officer 505 Oberlin Road, Suite 230 Raleigh, NC 27605 919-865-5086

Many thanks to our Camp Royall donors.

The support of the following individuals, businesses, and foundations helped the Autism Society of North Carolina provide more than $200,000 for camp scholarships during summer 2017.

$10,000 and Above

Eileen and David Bird

Marea and Brad Goodwin

ASNC Surry County Chapter

Carol Manzon and Chris Diplock

Jennifer and Greg Grady

ASNC Wake County Chapter

Danielle Hogan and Ethel Farrell

Robert Hickling

BB&T Charitable Contributions

Angela and Brian Glover

Gina Lee

Carolina Panthers Charities Fund of Foundation for The Carolinas

Helene and Bill Lane

Keryn and Kevin Maionchi

Maureen and Rob Morrell

Dolores McGovern

Teia Poulin and Elaine Pendell

Patty and Ed Meilus

Deborah Ramsey

Heather Moore and Steve Jones

Southern Garden, Inc.

Carol and Donald Rives

Kathy and Patrick O’Brien

The Estate of Mary V. Balliet

Leigh and Jeff Vittert

Lisa O’Connor

Triangle Community Foundation, Inc. Send a Kid to Camp

Dawn Wilcox

Marc Passey

Teresa and John Sears


North Carolina Community Foundation Premiere Communications & Consulting, Inc. - Raleigh

Kim and Jeff Woodlief

Michael Reichel Linda and Kevin Routh

Acorn Alcinda Foundation

Katie and Tracey Sheriff



Kathleen Duval and Marty Smith

ASNC Durham County Chapter

Jennifer and David Venable

BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina

ASNC Guilford County Chapter

Jacqueline and Dereck Whittenburg

Charlotte Observer/The Summer Camp Fund

ASNC Mecklenburg County Chapter

Ruth Hurst and Tom Wiebe

Community Foundation of Gaston County Roberts-Miller Children’s Fund

Blown Away Blow Dry Bar



BrickStreet Mutual Insurance Company

Archer Western Contractors

Cash Bland


ASNC Craven County Chapter

Carol and Doug Fink


ASNC Davidson County Chapter

Jill and Doug Terry

Golden Corral Corporation

ASNC Moore County Chapter

Denise and Stephen Vanderwoude

Granville County Community Foundation Annette Clark Endowment

ASNC Person County Chapter


Johnston County Community Foundation

Brunswick County Community Foundation

ASNC Orange/Chatham County Chapter

Moore County Community Foundation

Bank of America

Onslow Caring Communities Foundation

Bright Funds Foundation

PPR Foods, LLC/McDonald’s

Kendra Scott of North Hills

Tanas Hair Designs & Day Spa

Kendra Scott of SouthPark

The Eisner Charitable Fund, Inc.

Macy’s - SouthPark

The Phillips-Grove Foundation

Marsh & McLennan Agency

Wake Electric Foundation

Healthy Charlotte Alliance

Willpower Enterprises Inc.

Pediatric Possibilities

Yoga & Wellness of High Point, LLC

Pfizer, Inc.

Karen Altenpohl

Raleigh Diamond

Rebecca and Cory Bean

Special Needs Planning and Wealth Management

TEGNA Foundation

Jeanne and Thomas Bolik

The Arc of Buncombe County

The Knightly Order of The Fiat Lux Triangle Chapter

Ingrid and Neal Conley

The Cyzner Institute

Janet and James Cozart

The Robert W. Mansfield Fund/Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund

Vineyard Vines of North Hills Women of Fearrington, Inc.

ASNC Onslow County Chapter

Lithko Contracting, LLC

Amy and Vance Fowler

ASNC UNC Campus Chapter Champs for Camp Consolidated Distribution Corporation Dave Jobe FirstGiving Gina Scott & Associates, Inc. HagerSmith Design, PA Holly Reiter, Joseph Martin Photography Legacy Custom Homes Raleigh Kiwanis Foundation, Inc. • 25

United Way of Greater Greensboro Nadine and David Antonelli Jamezetta and Edward Bedford Kerry and Marcus Briones David Christmas William Cole Kerri and Jeremy Erb Krista and Patrick Falvey Liza and Mark Gosnell Lesley and Michael Graves Kate and Harvey Hall Susanne Harris Cathy and Phil Heitman Barbara and Geoff Imboden Lisa and David Kaylie George Lambert Sara McLeod Dwight Meredith Kristy and Aleck Myers Nancy and Joe Nestor John Patterson Jim Phillips Julie and Nels Roseland Jeanne McGovern and Michael Schwenk Anne and Edwin Shoaf Cathy and Gregory Smith Sandra and William Steele Gina and Jeffrey Stocton Judith and Mark Strickland Vicky Thompson Lolita and Gerald Tripp Barbara Bailey and John Walenty Donna Weeks Judy and Paul Wendler

Hampton Inn & Suites SouthPark at Phillips Place

Mark Logan

Hardison & Cochran, P.L.L.C.

Sue and Jan Martin

Kiwanis Club of Lee County, Inc. KTL - McDonald’s, LLC Lincoln Electric Schneider Electric The Comedy Zone Triple J Services United Way of Central Indiana, Inc. Julietta Apple Erin Badgett and Bryan Beasley Lindsay and James Bedford Jeff Begnoche Suzanne Begnoche Ashley Bell PJ Bundy Adrienne and Chris Campolmi Ingrid Chopping Darin Clark Hope and Gary Colen Chad Corbin Nancy Crain Tammie and James Crawford Cory Formyduval Heather and Edgar Garrabrant James Gatling Nancy and William Geist Geraldine Fein and Ronald Geizer Deborah Moore and Jeffrey Goldshine John Goodwin Mary and Chris Gredvig Eileen and James Herbst Sheldon Hilaire

Kristy and Andrew White

Katherine and Daniel Hirscher


Taylor Seagroves and Grey Idol

Accu-Tech Amélie’s French Bakery Amundi Smith Breeden Associates LLC Angus Barn Anixter ASNC Edgecombe/Halifax/Nash/Wilson County Chapter

Rochelle and Jerry Gedaly Loree and Scott Idol William James Nan and Ray Johnsen Christine and Lawrence Jones Leatha Kendrick Rosemary Kenyon Jan and Kevin Kidd

ASNC Harnett County Chapter

Beckie and Mike Kimbrell


Tommy Lawrence

Diamonds Direct

Renee and Mike Lawson

Durham Performing Arts Center/DPAC

William Leonard

26 26 ••Camp CampChronicle Chronicle2017 2017

Jane and Neal Mahan Lisa and Thomas McIver Harvey McQueen Nicki Moore Thaddeus Moore Chad Morgan Max Mullins Sealy and Bran Nash Eric Norman Lisa and Brian Obernesser John Olsen Joyce and Bill Partin Kelly and Jeffrey Powrie Timothy Rauwald Kirby Ring Candace and Joseph Roberts Susan and Marc Roth Scott Schmidt Debbie and Eddie Seagroves Monica Seaman Kevin Shaffer Cam Slaughter Susan and Derek Smith Jimmy Sprayberry Jeffrey Stanley Danny Thomas Jennifer Thompson Nichole Thompson Scott Tippins Jerry Washington Darryl Weeks Karl Whitney Jacqueline and Johnnie Young Mary Zalecki

$100-$249 Alton’s Kitchen & Cocktails ASNC Iredell County Chapter ASNC Lee County Chapter Chandgie Foundation, Inc. Charlotte Ballet DA Communications, Inc. Hearts and Hands ECA Quilters’ Guild Hickory Tavern JordonCares, Inc. Mid Carolina Moe’s, LLC

NOFO @ the Pig

Jamie Hallman

Stephen Quindlen

Rocky Top Hospitality

Robin Hamilton

Elizabeth and Jerry Radman

The Sanderling Resort

Monica Harrington

Srini Reddy

United Way of Central Indiana, Inc.

Margaret and Dennis Harrison

Joseph Regan

Sarah and Chris Allen

Linda and James Harvey

Paige Rielly

Anne and Lang Anderson

Kenneth Hawkins

Gregory Rimmer

Daisy and Guy Anderson

Brianna Herold

David Roberts

Jodi and Troy Bailey

Maryellen Hill

Jacqueline Roh

Nancy and Rick Baker

Paula Holevac

Marjorie Serralles and Terry Russell

Martina and Dwayne Ballen

Amanda Hollingsworth

Mary and Anthony Salem

Darrel Barnes

Patricia Holsinger

Carlos Santiago

Kimberly Bond

Jessica Horner

Amanda Saunders

Mary Jane and Charles Bosworth

Brian Hughes

Leanne and Jacob Schaffhauser

Sandi and Leonard Bouchard

Kamlesh Jagani

Bridget and Jeremy Scharpenberg

Lucy and Todd Bourque

Angelina and Earl Jeffries

Judy Scharpenberg

Stephanie and Dustin Brewer

Graham Jones

Curtis Scott

Florante Briones

Lori Jones

Elizabeth and Hernan Sedda

Kristi Briones

Regina and William Kaiser

Adam Shephard

Betty and William Brown

Jean and Jeffrey Kelly

Kathy and Michael Snyder

Linda and Michael Bryant

Whitney Kephart

Mark Sobieraj

Nicholas Burton

Marilyn Kiester

Kari and Matt Soule

Jacob Butler

Culey and John Kilimanjaro

Ross Stout

Cully Carson

Melinda Kinsel

Rebecca and Walter Stovall

Amie and Victor Cennamo

Teresa Klauss

Maya Styner

James Chavis

Lauren and Travis Kruse

Kate and Andrew Sugg

Lauren Chubb

Bettie and Rick Lambeth

Ashley and David Tilton

Paul Clegg

Danielle Larsen

Phyllis and James Townsend

Janice and Michael Colin

Catherine and Gene Leonardi

Jennifer Townsend

Kendra and Travis Culberson

Ruth Letvinchik

Damon Tweedy

Cheryl and Michael Davis

Angela and John Lowe

Gigi Wainwright-Baker

Mitchell Dennis

Natiorka Lynch

Lynda Warner

Mary and Mike Dodson

John Mahood

Teresa and Calvin Warren

Carol and Douglas Dwyer

Kathryn and Brooks Mays

Linda Watson

Denys Fabiato

Daniel McCaskill

Daryl Weeks

Garrett Farmer

Joe McCollum

Si Weeks

Susan Fee

Nancy and Harry McKaig

Lauren West

Joseph Fischer

Akeysha McMurren

Ylva Westin

Bernadine Fox

Diane and John McQuade

Zachary Wilsey

Monica Fyffe

Allison Melton

Steve Wilson

Maria and Michael Gaither

Amy Michalesko

Alan Williams

Caele and Richard Gambs

Dawn Milton

Ricky Williams

Betty and Kenn Gardner

Virginia and Darrel Moser

Linda Winkler

James Gatling

Sara Gage and Erica Nesbit

Mike Wnorowski

Susan and Robert Geist

Lorraine and Russell Nolet

Kathleen Worrell

Leanna and Jimmie George

Susan and Randal Parks

Gina Young

Serenity George

Beverley Patterson

Eve and Craig Zavelo

Carol Griffin

Joelle and Thomas Pemberton

Elaine and Chester Gurski

Kelly and Jeffrey Powrie••27 27