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From Camper to Future Counselor, Kaleb R. Leads the Way at Camp Spark

Athlete Kaleb R. runs alongside a Camp Spark counselor on a track connected by a tether.In 2019, 9-year-old Kaleb R. attended the first Camp Spark session held exclusively for youth who are blind and visually impaired living in the state of Washington. Kaleb, who is from Tacoma, was one of the younger campers and was very shy and reserved. However, despite any hesitations, Kaleb participated in all the activities and got his first taste of life at Camp Spark never looking back.

In 2020 when Camp Spark was unable to meet in person, Kaleb was a faithful participant as Camp Spark was held online and never missed a session.

Once the campers were able to meet in person again in 2021, Kaleb was one of the first to sign up. When camp started up again that March, the counselors noticed a change in him. He was outgoing and thriving; no longer that shy, reserved kid from a few years before. He was actively seeking out opportunities to fully participate in camp and other NWABA programs too, showing his leadership potential. The counselors were able to see the impact Camp Spark was having on him. “I see myself more independent overall. I am also more confident with track and field, goalball and swimming,” says Kaleb.

Young Kaleb floating in a pool wearing swim goggles is held up by a Camp Spark counselor.Kaleb reached a big turning point this past year at Camp Spark. After having attended two sessions of Camp Spark, he was pushing himself even farther than before by achieving his goals and setting a high bar for others to reach as well. Kaleb shined as a mentor to the younger campers. He would show them around campus and the dining hall and gave them advice on how to make the most of their time at Camp Spark. By taking the lead, he was a shining example to both camp staff and fellow campers the impact this program had on him and what was possible for others, as well. “Each year I continue to learn more from this camp. Camp Spark never fails to help me improve and learn.”

Kaleb is looking forward to 2025, when he can apply to become a counselor-in-training at Camp Spark. We are looking forward to that too, as Kaleb is guaranteed to continue making an impact on everyone he works with.

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