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A Leader is Born – Youth Learn to Lead at Transition Summit 2013

How do blind and visually impaired kids learn the life skills their sighted peers pick up visually? Last month our three-day workshop during a beautiful, sunny weekend at Enchanted Hills Camp provided another enriching and educational experience for youth ages 16 to 25 years old who are interested in how to be successful in their vocational, academic, and personal lives.

“I’m so glad I came to Transition Summit again! It’s been so helpful in my career pursuits, especially in learning leadership skills.”
–Micah Aveno

The young people were placed in teams and challenged with hypothetical problems that they worked together to solve. One such challenge was to imagine that they were out hiking alone, lost, with a storm coming in and 20 minutes of daylight left. They were tasked with building a shelter that would keep them warm and dry, with just the things they found around them. Though overwhelmed at first, the young people quickly learned how to break down the challenge into more simple, solvable steps – a skill that will serve them well in the workplace and in life.
As an extra added bonus, keynote speaker and graduate chemistry student and Chemistry Camp leader Hoby Wedler talked to the group about maintaining enthusiasm and a positive attitude, cultivating professionalism and how to solve problems creatively.

“Do they have Transition Summits for sighted people? They should! This is so helpful. I have sighted friends who could benefit from all of this information.”
–Eduardo Mendez

If you are interested in attending next year’s Transition Summit program contact LightHouse Community Services Director John Liang at jliang@lighthouse-sf.org or 415-694-7334.

Volunteer at Enchanted Hills – Share Your Skills with our Campers

Do you have a special skill you’d like to share, while enjoying time spent in the beautiful outdoors? Would you like to teach a sport or an art class or take a group of campers out hiking? Enchanted Hills Camp is looking for volunteers for this summer’s camp sessions.

Enchanted Hills Camp volunteers bring their already acquired skills to camp to help staff create an enriching and vital camp experience, while maintaining a fun, supportive, and safe environment.

Each summer we utilize over 50 volunteers to assist in these areas and more:

  • Arts and Crafts: ceramics, painting, jewelry, and weaving
  • Nature/Science: hiking, ecology, Native American history, gardening
  • Sports and recreation: archery, goalball, soccer, beep baseball, bowling, boating, yoga, horseback riding and swimming
  • Enrichment: acting, dance, music and journalism
  • Staff assistance: cooking, office work, maintenance, driving, and reception work

If you’ve got a skill or two to share, are a team player and enjoy working and living in the community atmosphere of camp, this volunteer opportunity is for you. You can also go to Camper Van Finder to rent you own camper. You’ll need to be able to work a 12-hour day and travel independently. You’ll be asked to demonstrate emotional maturity, sensitivity to blindness and the ability to accept people as they are. Most of all, you must share the desire of the LightHouse to promote the independence, equality and self-reliance of people who are blind or visually impaired.

For more information contact Director Tony Fletcher at 415-694-7319 or afletcher@lighthouse-sf.org.

Volunteer Bo Diaz teaches archery to Enchanted Hills camper Ian Snow

Attention All High School Students

Are you looking for something to spice up your summer plans? If so, NFB STEM-X, the latest National Center for Blind Youth in Science (NCBYS) program, is just what you’ve been waiting for! This inquiry-based science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) program will provide participants with learning opportunities in STEM disciplines ranging from engineering and robotics to the science of cooking.

If you have attended or heard about previous NCBYS programs, like NFB Youth Slam or NFB Project Innovation, you are familiar with the exciting opportunities such programs provide. So, follow the link below and apply today! And don’t forget to tell your friends to do the same! Applications close at 11:50 p.m. on May 15, 2013.

  • Who: Blind students currently in grades 8-12
  • What: A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn new and exciting information in STEM and experience a small taste of life on a college campus while meeting new friends
  • Where: Towson University, Towson, Maryland (just north of Baltimore)
  • When: July 29 to August 3, 2013
  • Hashtag: #NFBSTEMX

To learn more, or to apply please visit www.blindscience.org/STEMX.

Questions about the program can be directed to Natalie Shaheen at nshaheen@nfb.org.

Reservations Going Fast for EHC Summer Sessions

The schedule is up and reservations are going fast for our Summer Sessions at Enchanted Hills Camp for the Blind and Visually Impaired. From babies to gray-hairs, there is a session designed for you! There is even a new session of Family Camp just for residents of Napa County! And after a few year’s hiatus, we are bringing back the Deaf-Blind session!

What’s New At EHC?

  • Enjoy the outdoor talent shows at our brand new redwood theater!
  • Explore new hiking trails parts of the campground that haven’t been visited in years!
  • We’ve upgraded our tandem bike fleet so that more campers can ride!

Sessions are listed below. For more information, visit the Enchanted Hills Camp 2013 page on our website. For questions please call us at 415-694-7310 or email us at EHC@lighthouse-sf.org.

EHC Sessions List
Chemistry Camp: May 3 – May 5
Napa Resident Family Camp: May 17 – 19 (call 415) 694-7310 for registration)
Blind Babies Family Camp: June 14 – June 16
Family Camp I: June 20 – June 23
Adults with Special Needs: June 29 – July 3
Adult/Alumni: July 5 – July 10
Family Camp II: July 11 – July 14
Kid’s Session – 3rd through 8th grade: July 15 – July 21
Family Camp III: July 24 – July 27
Teen Session – 9th through 12th grade: July 28 – Aug 3
Deaf-Blind Session: August 15 – Aug 18

Special Chemistry Camp Informational Phone Conference

When: Tuesday, March 12 from 6:00-7:00 p.m. Pacific time
Call (218) 339-2500 and use access code: 958093

During this call you’ll get an overview of camp by founder and coordinator Hoby Wedler, and get important information about filling out the application and applying for Chemistry Camp, details on camp logistics, and perhaps most importantly, hear testimonials from past mentors, instructors, and student alum! There will be plenty of time for your questions and comments throughout the call.

If you want more information on how blind students can study extremely visual subjects or want information on talking constructively with people who tell you that you can’t study visual subjects, this call is sure to answer some of your questions about accessibility and most importantly, about how you or a blind or low vision high school student you know can easily participate in the 2013 chemistry camp.

Blind Chemistry Camp for High School Students

Would you like to learn how blind people tackle the very visual subject of organic chemistry successfully? Do you have a general love for science? Are you a blind or low vision teenager considering a career in chemistry? Then the 2013 California Chemistry Camp is for you!

During this exciting and action-packed 3-day experience, students will get to learn how blind and visually impaired people use chemistry in their careers. We will explore techniques to make chemistry accessible. Take part in hands-on chemistry experiments, apply chemistry to cooking, and do magic with chemistry.

When: Friday, May 3, 2013 through Sunday, May 5, 2013
Where: Enchanted Hills Camp in Napa, California
Who: Up to fifteen blind high school students ages 14-18 will be selected to participate
Fee: Free

Transportation will be provided to and from Enchanted Hills Camp from pick-up points in the Bay Area and in Sacramento. Campers will arrive back at drop-off spots at 4 PM on Sunday, May 5. Or parents can choose to drive their child to and from Enchanted Hills Camp.

For an application or questions for this free camp, contact Angela Fowler, Director of Planning, Accessible Science at fowlers@syix.com or 530-902-0987. We hope to see you this spring at Enchanted Hills!

Youth Leadership Forum taking applications for July program

Applications are now available for the 2013 Youth Leadership Forum for Students with Disabilities (YLF), held July 22–26 in Sacramento. This program is provided to accepted students with disabilities at no cost. YLF is an annual five-day leadership program that provides information and resources about employment, education, independence and assistive technology. For more information or to apply click here.