DEDHAM, Maine — Buoyed by a recent generous donation and a reinforced organizational structure, Camp CaPella is eagerly awaiting the start of its summer season.
“We want everyone to know Camp CaPella is open once again this summer — especially kids and adults with disabilities and their families and friends,” said Debbie Breindel, program director. “We still have openings for the rest of the summer, and applications are still being accepted. It’s not too late. We’re just getting started.”
The camp on Phillips Lake in Dedham is completely handicapped-accessible and serves children and adults with physical and developmental disabilities, as well as their families. It is the only camp of its kind in eastern and northern Maine.
United Cerebral Palsy of Maine opened Camp CaPella in 1960 on the shores of Phillips Lake and operated the facility until 2006, when it closed because of money problems. The camp reopened in 2008 after several months of private fundraising by a small group of community supporters. Last summer, Camp CaPella became a separate nonprofit organization and opened its doors year-round.
Earlier this year, the camp received a gift from the Sunshine Lady Foundation Inc., owned by Doris Buffett, sister of billionaire investor Warren Buffet.
A substantial portion of the $500,000 donation, which was announced in February, will go toward buying the camp property and facilities outright from UCP. However, $65,000 will be a matching grant used to set up an endowment, a capital fund reserve account, a scholarship fund or all three.
For anyone concerned about the costs involved in sending their child to camp, Breindel said no campers or families have been turned away from Camp CaPella because of financial problems. Additionally, the camp seeks sponsorships and contributions throughout the year.
For information about Camp CaPella, a full list of camp offerings this summer or to fill out an application for camp, visit www.campcapella.org, or call 843-5104.