SNOWMASS, Colo. — The Aspen Camp for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is asking for the public’s help in order to continue serving those in the deaf community both in Colorado and around the country.
For those who are unfamiliar with the camp, its goal is to develop a sense of self-confidence, independence, and pride for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.
The camp itself is located in the pristine mountains of Aspen, where the sounds of nature echo all around. Also all around are people from across the country and the world.
“There’s just so many people to meet from all over the United States, some from other countries as well,” said Max Wilding, a former camper and staff member at the Aspen Camp. “I went there every year, every summer, even in the winter. I attended programs there as well. I just really love that place.”
Wilding is among the thousands of people who have visited the Aspen Camp for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing over the last five decades
“We don’t want to be isolated,” camper Grace Shular explained. “There’s a lot of fun experiences to be had and I think it needs to continue so that more people have those experiences and I think people should support this.”
It’s the only deaf and hard of hearing camp in Colorado and the only one of its kind in the world that is open year-round.
“Most deaf and hard of hearing children all over the state of Colorado are, in their own way, isolated in specific areas,” Board member and former camper Jennifer McLellan said. “This gives them an opportunity to connect with nature.”
McLellan credits the Aspen Camp for her decision to move to Colorado.
“Our ultimate goal is to set up the camp up as it was previously, before the pandemic,” McLellan explained. “So all deaf and hard of hearing kids can go and enjoy the camp and enjoy the camp as it was.”
The camp has been open since 1967. Its only off year was during the pandemic, which has contributed to its desperate need of repair.