TUSCUMBIA-A group of students, who came from three states to attend a special camp at Ivy Green, left Tuscumbia with fond memories of Helen Keller and The Shoals.
The students, traveled from as far as Wisconsin to attend Camp Courage, a Helen Keller Experience, Oct. 3-6. Most camp activities were held at Ivy Green, Keller’s birthplace and childhood home in Tuscumbia. Keller overcame losing her vision and hearing as toddler, to become an author, lecturer, advocate for the disabled and inspiration to people around the world. During Camp Courage, the students learn about Keller and how she helped change the world.
The goal of the intensive camp is to encourage students in grades fourth through sixth, who are vision and/or hearing impaired, to use their abilities to make a difference in their school, their community and the world, just as Helen Keller did.
The campers watched scenes from “The Miracle Worker” play, toured Ivy Green, created crafts, participated in self-esteem and team building activities, went fishing on Pickwick Lake, and toured Cypress Cove Farm in Red Bay. There were also activities for their parents.
There is no charge to the campers or their families who attend Camp Courage. Generous donations from sponsors make the camp possible.
Student teachers from the University of North Alabama serve as counselors for the camp. They are supervised by a team of Helen Keller Fellows, who are highly-qualified teachers of the deaf-blind.
The concept for Camp Courage originated with state Rep. Johnny Mack Morrow of Red Bay and Dr. Kenji Hamada of Oregon.
Morrow said Camp Courage preserves the legacy of Helen Keller and the miracle that occurred at Ivy Green when she first communicated with her teacher Anne Sullivan. “I think Helen Keller would be proud of what we are doing with her legacy.
Camp Courage is sponsored by the Helen Keller Birthplace Foundation, City of Tuscumbia – Mayor Kerry Underwood, Dr. and Mrs. Kenji Hamada, Colbert County Community Development Commission, Colbert County Tourism, Alabama Mountain Lakes Tourist Association, University of North Alabama, Alabama Tourism Department, Tim Horton Profound Outdoors, Muscle Shoals Trojan Bass Fishing Team, Red Warrior Foundation, Junior League of The Shoals, Tuscumbia Lions Club, Valley Credit Union, Mr. and Mrs. Scott Montgomery, Helen Keller Garden Club, District One Garden Clubs of Alabama, Colbert County Commission, Mr. and Mrs. Scott Cooper, Mr. and Mrs. Jim Jerkin, Kay Stegall, Beverly Wiginton, Pat Reeves, Pam Hendon, The Red Clay Table, Jack’s Hamburgers, Rick’s Produce, Shelly’s Cakes and Crafts, L.O. Bishop Barbecue and First Baptist Church of Tuscumbia.