First and foremost, the mission, or purpose, of Camp Abilities Brockport is to empower children and teens with visual impairments to be physically active and productive members of their schools, towns, cities, and communities, as well as to improve the health and well-being of people with sensory impairments. Many of the specialists at Camp Abilities are blind themselves, which greatly improves the experiences of the campers. Also, all of the specialists are perfect role models for the campers, who often have never met another person with the visual impairment that they have. In short, Camp Abilities teaches kids and teens what they can do in the areas of sports and recreation, which is often overlooked in their educational and home environments.
At the end of camp, each child is sent home with an in-depth assessment of their performance, achievement, and abilities in the sports and recreational activities that Camp Abilities Brockport offers. This information is shared with the parents and physical education instructors of each child, thus increasing their understanding of each child's abilities.
The second purpose of Camp Abilities Brockport is to train undergraduate and graduate students in the art of teaching sports and recreation to children with sensory impairments.
Thirdly, Camp Abilities Brockport provides some very needed respite time to families. When the children do go back home they are more able, independent, and confident in their abilities. After their summer experience at camp, participants recognize the importance of the family link between physical health, as well as the psychological, social, economic, and environmental factors which can improve physical activity. Additionally, Camp Abilities Brockport serves as a vehicle to assist children with disabilities to go out and become involved in their communities. Once this occurs, the individuals in the community gain a lot of respect for individuals with visual impairments, and increase the understanding and respect about individuals of different abilities.
Finally, Camp Abilities Brockport strives to continue research in the following areas:
Health-Related Fitness of Children with Visual Impairments
Deafblind Needs Assessment Study
Barriers to Physical Activity
Effect of Camp Practicum on Attitudes of Undergraduate and Graduate students
Effectiveness of Parental Resources
Validity and Reliability of Camp Assessment Instruments
Inclusion in General Physical Education of Students with Visual Impairments
Effect of Talking Pedometers on Walking Behavior
Communication During Physical Activity for Children who are Deafblind
Posture and Balance Study
Energy Expenditure During Physical Activity
Validation Study of Talking Pedometers
Camp Abilities Brockport is very fortunate to have a large number of children with visual impairments in order to conduct some very needed research. Previous research studies are as follow
Etiology of Rocking
Questionnaires on attitudes towards inclusion in physical education, on socialization into sport, and self-efficacy in physical activity
Instructional techniques to assess which ones best increase self-efficiency in sport and activities
Biomechanical kinematic analysis of running gait with different guiding techniques