Photos & News

Camps and partner staff walk and use wheelchairs to get across the foot bridge over FM 1781. Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography A camper using and wheelchair and support staff member from Camp MDA smile with camp activity leader after catching and reeling in a fish. Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Campers from Camp TLC enjoy sailing along Copano Bay.
Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Camp Aranzazu's Waterfront on Copano Bay
Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Camper from Camp Aspire smiles before taking off in sailboat with activity leader. Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Bridge over FM1781 at Sunset
Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Four campers from Camp MDA smile and show off binoculars in the middle of birdwatching. Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Nature Education Building near bayfront
Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography Camper from Camp MDA starting his day off fishing at the bayfront and smiling at the camera. Photo by: Beyond Memory Photography

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    April 26, 2021

    A Bridge to Opportunity

    Written by: Bianca Hernandez, Development Associate

    A couple weeks ago, a few friends of Camp Aranzazu’s board chair, Keith Little, spotted the foot bridge over FM 1781 and had some questions. What was the goal for building the bridge? Why was building the bridge so important to Camp Aranzazu and its mission? As someone who has also been enamored by the Camp Aranzazu property since starting at Camp, I completely understand the curiosity and have wondered how the bridge came to be. Well, if you’ve ever had any of the same questions or are just wondering what the foot bridge has done for Camp Aranzazu, just keep reading!

    In June 2018, campers from Driscoll Children’s Hospital’s Renal Department, camp staff, members of the board of directors, and friends from the Rockport community gathered to celebrate the completion of construction related to Camp Aranzazu’s expansion that began in September 2015 and that is valued at more than $11 million. You can watch Kiii’s coverage of our ribbon cutting ceremony here!

    The purpose of the expansion was to increase the number of beds to 135 so that Camp Aranzazu can serve more children and adults with special needs and chronic illnesses, and to create access to the camp’s unique waterfront area. The Interim Director for The University of Texas Marine Science Institute, G. Joan Holt, Ph.D., described the importance for further development of Camp Aranzazu’s waterfront property and the expected impact on our community in a letter to Camp founder, Tom Forney. Dr. Holt wrote, the inclusion of our nature education building “would create a new dimension to the programming offered by the camp, provide the area with a one of a kind eco-experience and generate long term interest in and appreciation for the coastal resources.”

    The 600-foot bridge over FM 1781, generously donated by Williams Brothers Construction Co., provides access to the camp’s 27 acres on Copano Bay. Camp Aranzazu’s coastal property provides great opportunity for recreation and environmental education with our four environmental zones: uplands, fresh water wetlands, salt water wetlands, and the coastline. The area includes a fishing pier, nature education building, board walks, bird blind, and floating dock to launch our sail boats.

    By expanding access to our waterfront property, campers now can enjoy sailing, fishing in Copano Bay, birdwatching, and walking along the shoreline — opportunities others may take for granted but that our campers with special needs do not often have a chance to enjoy. As the only camp serving campers with special needs and chronic illnesses along the Texas Coast, we have the unique privilege of making waterfront activities accessible for all campers, no matter their ability.

    Like our fearless Camp Director, Amelia, said, “kids [are] able to walk, roll, skip, and jump over there and experience Camp Aranzazu, Copano Bay and Rockport in a whole new way!”

    The foot bridge has proven to be a fantastic resource and continues to allow Camp Aranzazu to provide exceptional programming which now includes an adaptive sailing program that runs from late spring to early fall with an experienced, full-time sailing instructor. As we continue to develop and nurture our waterfront property, we look forward to learning and making new memories with campers along Copano Bay — thanks to a very special foot bridge!

     

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    In Other News

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    Monday, April 19, 2021

    It is an understatement to say that we are looking forward to providing a safe, fun, life-enriching experience to children and young adults with special needs and chronic illnesses this year.

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    Monday, April 12, 2021

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    Summer camp volunteer pictured smiling with camper.

    Monday, March 29, 2021

    While our staff understands the work we do and the need for our unique form of therapeutic recreation, our families and partners are the people who witness the impact of camp first hand for children and adults with special needs and chronic illnesses.

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    We welcome your help, whether it's once a week or once a year. Below is a list of volunteer opportunities that are typically available. If you are interested in volunteering, please download the volunteer application and return to Bianca Hernandez at bhernandez@camparanzazu.org. Thank you for your interest!


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    Camp Aranzazu holds several fundraising events throughout the year in Houston, Corpus Christi, San Antonio, and Rockport. Volunteers are always needed!

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    Activity Leader Summer 2019 Job Opportunity​​

    Every year, Camp Aranzazu hires roughly 20 college aged individuals with varying skill sets to work as Activity Leaders from mid-May to mid-August. Activity Leaders have the fun and impactful job of enriching the lives of our campers with special needs through unique camping, environmental studies and retreat experiences.

    Activity Leaders facilitate a variety of activities including, but not limited to arts and crafts, archery, high and low challenge courses, sports and games, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, fishing, sailing, swimming, nature sessions and more!

    Benefits of this paid position include room and board and the potential to satisfy fieldwork and internship requirements in various fields of study. The buttons below include the additional documentation you will need to apply for the Activity Leader position. Email your completed application, resume and two unique and completed reference forms to our Camp Director, Amelia Haslam, and prepare for the summer camp experience of a lifetime!

    If you have any questions, contact our Camp Director, Amelia Haslam, at ahaslam@camparanzazu.org.

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    Part-Time Receptionist

    Are you looking for a part-time job opportunity that allows you to be surrounded by nature in a supportive work environment? Camp Aranzazu currently has an opening for a part-time receptionist position on our staff. This opportunity will allow you to support our mission of enriching the lives of children and adults with special needs and chronic illnesses. To learn more about the position, click the job description below. 

    The Receptionist is responsible for overseeing functions related to the front office. The Receptionist also assists with special projects and provides some administrative support for all staff. If you are interested in the position and have any questions, please contact Lillian Anfosso, our Finance and Administative Director at lanfosso@camparanzazu.org. 

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    Sailing Supervisor

    Imagine a position that allows you to work with campers each day and have a beautiful view of Copano Bay along the Texas Gulf Coast.

    Camp Aranzazu seeks someone with strong sailing experience to supervise our summer sailing program from mid-May through August 2019. The Sailing Supervisor will ensure that Camp Aranzazu provides a safe environment for children with special medical, physical, emotional, social or financial needs to experience sailing. Camp sessions include day camp sessions, as well as residential sessions that last from one to six nights. If you have any questions, contact our Camp Director, Amelia Haslam, at ahaslam@camparanzazu.org.

    Make sure to check out the job description below. To apply, email your resume to Amelia Haslam. 


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    Summer Art Instructor

    Do you have a passion for providing fine arts education and working with a committed staff of people dedicated to enriching the lives of children and adults with special needs and chronic illnesses?

    Camp Aranzazu seeks someone with art teaching experience to supervise our summer fine arts program from mid-May through mid-August 2019. The Art Instructor will ensure that Camp Aranzazu provides an intentional, expressive, and safe environment for children with special medical, physical, emotional, and/or social needs to create and experience fine arts. Camp session include day camp sessions, as well as residential sessions that last from one to six nights. If you have any questions, contact our Camp Director, Amelia Haslam, at ahaslam@camparanzazu.org.

    Make sure to check out the job description below. To apply, email your resume to Amelia Haslam. 

    Job Description