Read what Bournelyf campers, parents, and friends have to say about their experiences at Bournelyf Special Camp.
“I can’t think of anything Brandon looks forward to more than the Bournelyf Alumni Trip. He enjoys this so much that at the end of the week he asks the counselors where they are going the next year. How lucky he is to have this wonderful experience!”
“Quite honestly, I don’t want to think about our lives without Camp Bournelyf! Since moving to the area eight years ago, Tom has blossomed into a young adult whose life is filled with friends, thanks to Bournelyf. We will always consider ourselves part of the Bournelyf family!”
~Susan and David Corum, Parents
“From the very first meeting, everyone at Bournelyf was positive and encouraging to Caroline and our family. They did everything they could to accommodate our daughter, and allow her to be a part of this amazing camp. The counselors have gone out of their way to try to understand Caroline’s unique challenges and have worked with our family to learn strategies for helping Caroline. Caroline has been a part of three different types of camp at Bournelyf over the past three summers. The camp experiences have helped her grow in confidence, learn new skills and mature in numerous areas. We are incredibly grateful for the efforts of the staff at Bournelyf Special Camp!
~Nancy Cordrey, Parent
“What Camp Bournelyf has always meant to us is summer. It is that anticipation of warm weather and fun things to come! We all eagerly wait for camp to start as it means getting to see our camp friends and having a whole lot of fun! The thing that my husband and I have always loved about Camp Bournelyf is that Michael is outside, doing things, all day long! Whether he be working in the Butterfly garden, practicing for the camp show or swimming, it affords him time outside with his friends when so much of his other time is spent inside. Now that he has transitioned to Expedition, it has given him the opportunity to work on and practice “life skills” with his peers that carry over into his everyday life. He absolutely loves the camp sleep overs and the bonding with his friends. And best of all, when camp is over, they now have the monthly activities that allow the campers to remain in touch with each other and forge friendships which are so important, especially for a young adult with autism. Thank you Camp Bournelyf!!”
~Sue Powell, Parent
“We love you. All of you. And we know how much you love Liz. We see it in her eyes, her carriage, her confidence, her comfort, her humor, her caring and concern for others, her intense desire to ALWAYS help others. These are the things you have all been instrumental in instilling in Lizzie, and we are eternally grateful. We hope Bournelyf is here for decades to come, serving this special community so magnificently and giving the community something that simply improves that community quietly and profoundly. A group of young adults that contribute by the pure example of unconditional love and concern for everyone. You and I know that Liz and all the campers do this naturally. You’ve played a critical role in this, and I hope that the day comes that you and your staff are recognized for all that you’ve quietly and steadily done. Thank you all from the bottom of our collective hearts.
Rob, Ali, Sam and Liz Kramen, Camp Family
“Camp Bournelyf holds a special place in our family’s heart. Our two children, Nate and Lily, attend the camp. Nate started in 2006 and his younger sister Lily joined him in 2011. Going to Camp Bournelyf is the highlight of Nate and Lily’s summer. They countdown the days until camp starts. When I dropped our children off for the first day of camp this past summer my heart swelled with emotions. I got back in my car and my eyes filled up with tears of joy. To have this camp available to our children, and right in our backyard, is truly a blessing. Great friendships have been made with fellow campers and camp staff members. Our extended family and many friends look forward to camp show each summer. None of us leave the show without shedding a few tears watching the campers display their abilities and talents. For Nate and Lily, Camp Bournelyf is so much more than just a few weeks of fun in the summer. It is chance for them to step away from their therapies and academic challenges while still learning and remaining physically active. It is a place filled with love and support for all who attend. ”
~Carolyn & Jeff Seagraves, Parents
“Samantha has truly loved attending Bournelyf Special Camp for the past 14 or so summers. By September of each year, she is already talking about going to Camp the next summer. The Camp Show has always been one of the highlights of her summer (and ours…)! She loves “hanging with her friends” and spending her days with the caring, friendly, motivating counselors and staff. Samantha also enjoys the adventures she experiences when traveling to locations within the county and participating in community-based social and service-related activities. Samantha loves being part of the Hand 2 Hand 5K, creating the butterfly garden, and working out at Mitch’s Gym. The cooking program she participated in at Camp was “delicious” and centered on campers learning to create healthy snacks and meals. Attending Bournelyf Special Camp has provided Samantha with many opportunities for new experiences, physical activity, independence, and friendship. Samantha also looks forward to attending the dances and other social events throughout the year where she reconnects with peers and staff, and has a wonderful day or evening out!”
~Kathy & Dave Bucher, Parents
“Our plan was to have our daughter attend Bournelyf for the entire summer program. Having just graduated, continuing the social interaction camp provided was important for her well-being and the variety of programs that Bournelyf had scheduled would help her learn about giving back, staying active and living independently in the community. Better than graduating to watch television or surf the web!
Financially for us it was going to be a struggle if not impossible. We had to settle for one session, only two weeks. I notified Bournelyf of our decision. Then Anne approached me and offered financial support. Funds that Bournelyf had thru grants and the generosity of the community and local organizations. I was so excited and thankful that this was going to work out for our daughter.
I have to say, Camp was great! My daughter loved swimming every day, camp overnights, shopping for supplies, and working out at Mitch’s Gym. The trips to tour Citizens Bank Park and the Strasburg Railroad were some of her favorites. Of course the summer wouldn’t be complete without the Camp Show. All the campers and the staff participating. Camp staff, some as young as 16 yrs old there at Bournelyf spending their summers being role models, friends. We wouldn’t want our daughter to spend the summer anywhere else or with anyone else.”
“Bournelyf is a place where goodness springs effortlessly, year after year. My whole family is saddened at the end of camp every year…as we all realize that Amy has to wait a whole year to be so happy again!
The campers are so very special, this is true. But the true magic comes from the counselors and directors of Bournelyf. It is with great gratitude that we watch these young folks offer their talents, their kindness and their precious time….to make such a huge impact in our children’s lives. We are convinced these folks have no idea of the depth of their impact, and what they truly mean to our children. It is the simple, yet powerful, sharing of their friendship and caring that brings us back year after year…and we get such joy at seeing these familiar faces again.
Every one of our children should experience the spirit of Bournelyf; it will change you for the better.
We encourage any curious individual to drive into camp one summer day…the colorful tent, the butterfly garden, the voices drifting from the barn, the cheers from the pool, the tired boaters/horseback riders returning in their vans, the spirited morning circle ritual…you will be glad you did! ”
~The Vermeils, Parents
“My daughter, Amanda, loved Bournelyf camp as a camper and loves Bournelyf Alumnae Camp even more! It’s a wonderful experience for her to be able to go away with her peers and be somewhat independent as well as some respite for me.” Marian Rothstein, Parent
“I like Camp Bournelyf because I can meet new people. It is good for me to experience different activities like swimming, trips to the park, playing games, horseback riding, and dancing. I love the counselors. They are fun, active, talented, and very nice to me always.
I like this experience; it is a lot of fun for a summer event!”
~Emily C. Scott, Camper
“Bournelyf camp is the best camp in the area (and probably farther) for kids with special needs. They have great activities for the kids, all keeping them active and busy. My daughter, Bryn, loves going canoeing, swimming and the night activity. The counselors are the best around. They are invested in the camp and every one of the kids. Many of the counselors have been involved with the camp for many years. Each day the kids are met with a huge welcome by the counselors.
Bournelyf isn’t just for the summer. Each month they have an activity for the campers to see each other. Examples, dances, beach day, crafts and more.
Our family feels so blessed we found this camp. It has been a huge impact on our daughter’s life. There aren’t many special places like this for our kids.”
~Kim Hildebrand, Parent
“My daughter Julia loved attending camp at Bournelyf this summer. She especially enjoyed going out into the community and the extended day trip to Strasburg Railroad, pizza and ice cream. I really liked the counselor, she was informative and very friendly. It was a great experience.”
“Catherine loves to come to Bournelyf Special Camp in the summer. This was her thirteenth year to come! She loves seeing the friends she has made over the years and participating in the many activities that are planned on site and other places. She loves having a chance to share during the morning circle time, go swimming, eat lunch with friends, and do just about everything.
“This year she especially enjoyed picking green beans for the Chester County Food Bank. Helping others has always been important to Catherine. This was a new way for her to help others. She wears the shirt she was given proudly.”
~Jan Lasak, Parent
“Every parent of a special needs child knows it can be a very lonely place — but the counselors at Camp Bournelyf light up our entire summer! This impressive group of smart, beautiful and hip young people are my inspiration every year. Summer after summer they return (as volunteers!) and work tirelessly with our children.
“They drive them to interesting activities, they keep them together and safe during outings, and occasionally spend the night in tents with them!
“Every camper’s family benefits in countless ways from this respite time provided by Bournelyf. The thought of having my daughter age out of camp is very difficult; Camp Bournelyf has become the most important part of our summer experience for a number of years now.
“The Camp Bournelyf counselors are amazing! Camp Bournelyf is a treasure for the campers and their families!”
~JC Callahan, Parent
“Camp is truly a gift to James and we as a family hope to send our support from our hearts. It is great to find a caring group of people who always have the best with their hopes for people with special needs.”
~Regina Sarno, Parent
“The mission of the camp is beautifully reflected in the happy faces of the campers, in the activities at the pool and pond, and in the caring spirit of the staff and volunteers.”
~Martha and John Diffey, Friends
“Not a day goes by that a camp story doesn’t pop into my head and makes me smile.”
~Tom Sabol, Former Assistant Director