Wheels in Motion Summer Camp

DC Summer Camp Encourages Kids With Disabilities to Be Active

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The D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation holds a camp at the Turkey Thicket Rec Center in Brookland that gives kids with disabilities a summer to remember.

For the past five summers, MedStar National Rehabilitation Hospital and the District offer Wheels in Motion, a free, week-long summer camp.

“It’s teaching kids that even though you’re in a wheelchair you can still be active,” said Joan Joyce of MedStar.

“We see kids in the hospital, and they think they can’t do anything, or adults,” she said. “They think, Oh no, I had a spinal cord injury or I had this happen, I’m never gonna be able to do what I love again.”

But that’s not the case. The kids try batting baseballs and rounding the bases. They get to use special sports wheelchairs to go faster.

“I really like it, because before I had this camp, I didn’t really do much during the summer and I would just kind of sit at home bored wishing I could go to a sports camp like my sisters did, so it was really nice when it started,” camper Hannah Diamond said.

“They come here and they’re like, Wow, look. Everybody’s like me. And so all day long they’re chasing each other, and playing tag, just like everyday kids, which is awesome,” Joyce said.

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