I just received this email and it really saddens me. My son has attended Camp Royall twice. It is difficult to get in and now that they are consolidating both of their camps, it will be harder. I think that having both of these camps operating is important for our children in North Carolina.
August 31, 2009
Dear Autism Community Members:
We are writing today to make you aware of some changes that have occurred at the Autism Society of North Carolina (ASNC) as a result of a reduction in our state funding. Following this year’s difficult legislative session, ASNC realized that our annual budget would include a decrease in revenue of close to $600,000 compared to last year.
For 39 years, ASNC has provided summer camp programming for children and adults living with autism. In 1997, Camp Royall, a 130 acre facility owned by the Autism Foundation of North Carolina and operated by ASNC, opened near Pittsboro, allowing us to serve an increased number of campers over previous years when ASNC rented space at Camp New Hope in Chapel Hill. In 1998, ASNC started a program in the Asheville area called Mountain Adventure, which served approximately 75-100 campers each summer. The Mountain Adventure program was located at a facility we rented in Black Mountain. In 2009, we served nearly 400 campers from ages 4 to 60 at the two locations.
As a result of the state budget cuts, we had to cut costs in several areas and across departments. In addition, we have made the difficult but necessary decision to consolidate the camp programs into one location from this point on, and in 2010 the summer camp program will be operated at Camp Royall.
We know that many families have had children experience summer camp at Mountain Adventure. But, with the significant reduction in funding, we had no other choice but to close the program at Mountain Adventure.
Looking forward, we have established a staff/board task force that will be working to expand the use of Camp Royall for individuals living with autism throughout the year. It is also our intent to continue to serve the same number of campers who attended both of our camps this summer at Camp Royall next year.
The 2010 summer camp application will be available in January. We will continue to keep you informed about the summer camp program and expansion of opportunities at Camp Royall.
Your input and suggestions regarding our camp and programs are important. Please contact either of us with concerns or suggestions you have. Please click on the names below to send an email.
Whitney Jones, Ph.D.
President & CEO
Autism Society of North Carolina | 505 Oberlin Road | Suite 230 | Raleigh, NC 27605-1345 | US