Spring 2023 Newsletter

Page 1



History in Photos

Find Your Camp Event Information

And more!

30 years ago, Camp For All founders Dr. Paul Gerson, Dr. Robert Zeller and Larry Neuhaus recognized the impact of camp in a child’s life. They had the bright idea of building a camp for all children who because of their challenges could not go to camp. They enlisted the expertise of architect, Peter Boudreaux and before anything was designed or built, they met with some of the organizations that would bring campers to Camp For All and asked:

If you could build a camp that would meet all the needs of the people you serve: What would it look like? What would they need? And we want you to dream big!

The life changing result is a unique, barrier-free camp that is a leader in the special needs camping industry. Built from the ground up, Camp For All has served nearly 180,000 children and adults with autism, cancer, muscular dystrophy, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, severe burns, multiple sclerosis, intellectual and development disabilities and so much more.

Thank you to everyone that made and continues to make Camp For All a reality! Dreams really do come true!


Camp For All transforms the world for children and adults with challenging illnesses or special needs.

From The Chair

Almost 30 years ago, I was standing in a beautiful pasture that was home only to mosquitos and range critters. It took some imagination, but I could picture the future for this land: a camp for people with special needs called Camp For All. I was just starting my career as a pediatric nephrologist and little did I know the impact this place would have on me, my family, and most importantly my patients.

A child with a physical challenge or illness might become focused on taking medicines and going through treatment. While those things are super important to their well-being, at the same time it can make kids feel isolated and scared. Camp For All changes all that. Through flying down a zip line, riding a horse, eating diet appropriate food, all while surrounded by kids with similar challenges, campers find hope, grow in self-confidence, and realize they are not alone. Their disease does not define who they are.

I have seen this firsthand because I have been bringing patients to Camp Shining Stars at Camp For All since 1999. Nearly 180,000 campers later, that beautiful pasture has turned into a place beyond my imagination.

Thank you to our donors, volunteers, and staff past, present and future.


Find your Camp!


May 25-28 Janus Children with burns

May 28-June 2 LHF Camp Bayou Bruisers Children and teens with bleeding disorders

May 29-June 2 Sunrise Teens with developmental challenges

June 4-9 MDA Children with muscular dystrophy

June 5-9 Camp For All 2U Camp at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston

June 11-16 Oasis Children with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis

June 11-16 Spike ‘n Wave Children with epilepsy

June 18-23 Star Trails Children with cancer and blood disorders

June 25-30 Camp Dreamcatcher Children with cancer

June 25-30 Rainbow Connection Children and teens with cancer

July 2-7 Camp That Love Built Children and adults with spina bifida

July 2-7 Camp Smiles Children with cerebral palsy

July 8-14 PHEver Children with phenylketonuria

July 9-14 Social Superheroes Children with learning differences

July 16-22 Shining Stars Children with kidney disease

July 16-21 Camp Hope Children with HIV and AIDS

July 23-28

Camp Champions Campers with intellectual differences

July 30-Aug 5 Periwinkle Children with cancer and their siblings

Aug 6-11 Discovery TX Children with skin disease

Aug 6-11 Cell-A-Bration Children with sickle cell disease

FALL 2023

Sept 8-10 NF Camp Families affected by neurofibromatosis

Sept 14-16 Gryphon’s Nest Adolescents with academic and social challenges

Sept 15-17 Be An Angel Families with a child with special needs

Sept 22-24 Camp Love Without Limits Children with orthopedic and neurological diagnosis

Sept 27-28 CSA Sleepaway Camp Children with learning differences

Sept 29 -Oct 1 YOLO Teens and siblings with life-threatening illnesses

Sept 29 -Oct 1 Periwinkle Family Camp Families affected by cancer and

Camp Janus

Louisiana Hemophilia Foundation

Briarwood Tuttle School

Muscular Dystrophy Association

Camp For All Program

Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation

Epilepsy Foundation of Texas Houston/Dallas/Fort Worth

MD Anderson Children’s Cancer Center

McLane Children’s Hospital, Baylor Scott & White

Childhood Cancer Connection

Spina Bifida Association of Houston

Easter Seals of Greater Houston

UT Health Houston

The Parish School

Kidney Kamp Foundation

AIDS Foundation - Houston

The ARC of Harris County

The Periwinkle Foundation

American Academy of Dermatology

Sickle Cell Association of Austin Marc Thomas Foundation

Texas Neurofibromatosis Foundation

Gateway Academy

Be An Angel

Shriners Hospital for Children

Capitol School of Austin

The Periwinkle Foundation

The Periwinkle Foundation other life-threatening illnesses

Oct 4-6 BridgePrep Children with learning differences

Oct 4-6 The HUB Neurodiverse teenagers and young adults

Oct 6-8 Long Term Survivor Camp Teens and siblings with life-threatening illnesses

Oct 18-20 Monarch Butterfly Children with neurological differences

Oct 20-22 Camp Life Children and adults with any disability

Oct 20-22 Safe Haven Family Camp Families who foster or adopt

Oct 27-29

Fall Camp Out Adults with developmental challenges

Oct 27-29 Camp MOST Teens with physical disabilities

Nov 10-12

Duchenne Family Camp Families affected by Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Nov 16-19 Mission Flexible Fall Retreat Veterans who are living with PTSD

BridgePrep Academy

The HUB Houston

The Periwinkle Foundation

The Monarch School

Center on Disability and Development at Texas A&M University

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

The ARC of Harris County

Easter Seals of Greater Houston

Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy

Mission Flexible

*Please refer to www.campforall.org for schedule updates.
1 Visit www.campforall.org 2 Click the “Find Your Camp” button in the navigation bar 3 Select the category or categories that apply to you or your loved one 4 Contact the organization directly to sign up!

Barrier-Free Bites

Food is a big part of any camp! However, serving children and adults with challenging illnesses or special needs, Camp For All takes food service to a whole new level. It is a program like swimming and riding horses with specific goals beyond just having good food. And, like everything else at Camp For All, it is barrier-free.

Over the past 30 years dietary challenges have multiplied. These include food allergies, low salt diets, protein limitations, gluten-free, liquid diets and more. It is not only essential that our campers have the proper food, but serving it in a manner that does not make them stand out as different helps our campers feel acceptance and learn how to eat appropriately in order to stay healthy both mentally and physically.

Camp For All welcomed Tom Hoffman as our Food Services Manager, last summer. Following in the footsteps of his grandfather, he fell in love with cooking. This led him to hotel, restaurant, and eventually special needs camp experience at Camp Make-A-Dream in Montana. It was there he discovered he could use his culinary skills to truly make a difference.

At Camp For All, Tom and a talented food services team who are dedicated to the well-being of our campers, have embraced the barrier-free diets and have moved the food service program to a 75% scratch style kitchen. This provides control over the ingredients, costs, makes meals more inclusive and removes barriers by having clean food that everyone loves, including those with special diets.

Recipes from Tom’s Kitchen

Champagne Vinaigrette

The beauty of this recipe is that it can be what it is on its own, or you can add all kinds of different things to it. Add cilantro and lime zest and you have cilantro lime dressing or cranberries for a Cranberry Vinaigrette.

3 cloves of garlic

¾ cup of champagne vinegar (you can sub rice, balsamic or apple cider vinegar, if desired).

3 tablespoons Dijon mustard

3 tablespoons honey

3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Zest of one lemon or lime

1 ½ teaspoon salt to taste

Fresh ground pepper to taste

1 ½ cup olive oil

Place in food processor or blender and pulse until smooth.

Shawarma Seasoning

This is used a lot at Camp For All. We season chicken, pork for pulled pork and veggie blends, especially on zucchini and squash. I personally always have this spice at the ready for any Mediterranean cooking I want to do.

2 tbsp. garlic powder

2 tbsp. ground black pepper

2 tbsp. ground allspice

1 tbsp. nutmeg

1 tbsp. cinnamon

1 tbsp. cardamom

½ tbsp. dried oregano

½ tbsp. salt

2 tsp. ground cloves

Buzz in a coffee grinder devoted to spices or even toss by hand.




The Howard Hughes Corporation

DATE: April 29, 2023 at the Woodlands Tower

Camp For All is going Over The Edge again in 2023, and here’s your chance to test your nerves for our campers! Participants must raise $1,500 or more for the opportunity to rappel off the 31-story Woodlands Tower! If you don’t feel brave enough to tackle the tower, you can always support one of our brave fundraisers, or volunteer at the event.


DATE: January 21, 2023

CO-CHAIRS: Laurie and Chris Baker | Debra and Steve Gilbreath

HONORING: Martha and Buzz White | Patrick Samuels

Dressed in their sparkling best, more than 550 members of the Camp For All family gathered at The Revaire to celebrate 30 Years of Camp For All, Past, Present and Future. The event, chaired by Laurie and Chris Baker and Debra and Steve Gilbreath, raised nearly $1.3 million – setting a new Camp record!

The evening was co-emceed by Lisa Malosky and Angela Wrigglesworth, a former camper, staffer, and board member for Camp For All, and got off to a spectacular start, with the announcement of a proclamation from the City of Houston, declaring January 21, 2023, Camp For All Day.

The evening honored Martha and Buzz White and Immediate Past Chair of the Board, Patrick Samuels for their dedication to the mission, as volunteers, advocates, donors, and leaders. The founders of Camp For All, Dr. Paul Gerson, Dr. Bob Zeller and Larry Neuhaus, with architect, Peter Boudreaux, and original CEO Vicki LaRue Drummond, received a standing ovation when saluted from the stage by Camp For All President and CEO, Pat Prior Sorrells.

Former camper and Camp For All 2U volunteer Mayra Delacruz brought the crowd to its feet with her story of how Camp For All helped her grow from a timid young girl into a confident young woman. She talked about how helping other campers led to her own transformation: “I realized that I could provide much-needed support and impart some of the knowledge I have gained during my own journey.”

Moved by Mayra’s stirring speech, guests bid generously on auction items and raised their paddles to send more campers to Camp For All.

For an organization that has so much to celebrate over the last 30 years, this was truly a night to remember – and Camp For All is so grateful for everyone whose generous support of this special evening will help us transform the world for thousands more campers!


To purchase a table or learn more visit  www.campforall.org/events

Camp For All 30th Birthday Party

DATE: Saturday, October 12, 2023

LOCATION: Camp For All

HOSTED BY: The Camp Friends Board Of Directors

If you missed the 30th Anniversary Gala, there’s still time to celebrate! Join us for A Birthday Party to end all Birthday Parties! The Camp Friends Board invites you to celebrate the 30th Birthday of Camp For All on Thursday, October 12 at 6:00 PM. The party, complete with cake, party hats, and balloons will return to Camp For All this fall. We invite you to help us celebrate this milestone and transform the world for children and adults with challenging illnesses or special needs.

To purchase tickets or tables for the Birthday Party, or sign up to go Over the Edge, visit www.campforall.org/events or contact Manager, Special Events, Ricki Hendrix at rhendrix@campforall.org



Every gift makes a huge impact on the lives of children and adults with special needs or challenging illnesses and their families. We are honored by the generosity of the compassionate and dedicated family of donors who make Camp For All possible with their kind support.


To give a gift by credit card, visit www.campforall.org/ donate. You can also send a check to: Camp For All 3701 Kirby Drive, #570 Houston, Texas 77098


If you would like to make a gift in honor or in memory of a friend or loved one, please let us know who should be notified about this special tribute.


Monthly donors are our “Energizers” each month! Visit www.campforall. org/donate to set up your monthly or quarterly gift of $10, $25 or $50. You can stop any time you need to.



Many employers will match your contributions to Camp For All. If you need supporting documentation to complete the match, please contact Serjio Brereda at sbrereda@campforall.org.


Leave Your Legacy for Camp For All. Including Camp For All in your will can give the gift of joy, belonging and fun to thousands of campers, long after you are gone.

If you have already planned a gift or designated Camp For All as a beneficiary in a life insurance policy or retirement account such as a 401k, or if you would like to make a gift of stock or talk to someone about a gift, please contact Development Director Mary Beth Mosley at 346-440-3036 or mmosley@campforall.org.


We celebrate FUN everyday!

Ready to Volunteer?

From our earliest days, volunteers have been vital to Camp For All. Even before we had campers, they helped clear brush and plant sod! Today, our volunteers are still important supporters of the mission – and we would love to have YOU join us at Camp!

Bob Funk

Philip Gallegos

Amanda Gyeszly

Sarah Hastings

Kim Hurst

Ally Kelly

Candy Leiser

Michael Lewis

Liz Logan

Steph Magers

Matt Mogas

Stacie Pitts

Patrick Samuels

Lesley Schick

Susie Smith

Julie Taetz

Martha White

Dena Wren Mumford EX OFFICIO

Cale Ferguson

Jenny Schaer

Volunteers impact every facet of Camp life, from serving meals to keeping the grounds looking great, to lending a hand with campers on the zipline, at the ranch, or at other activities. It’s great fun to serve with your family, church, or civic group, and our corporate volunteers say it’s a great team-building exercise.

Volunteer Supervisor, Beth Deans, is scheduling volunteers for the spring, summer and fall! Visit www.campforall.org/volunteer to find out more, or email volunteer@campforall.org.

2023 Camp For All Board of Directors CHAIR Joshua Samuels, M.D. Marion
Anderson Jim Avioli Laurie Baker Tom Behanick Beth Clarke Bob Davis Marcella Foreman Ashley Frysinger
Steve Gilbreath
Pat Prior Sorrells McKensie Wren East
Paul Gerson, M.D. Laurence B. Neuhaus Robert S. Zeller,
Prior Sorrells
Gary W. Miller
Follow us! Visit www.campforall.org or call 713.686.5666 for more information about donating, attending or volunteering!

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