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Hope's Crossing Camp Provides Freedom, Fun To Kids With Special Needs

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Jade Rodriguez and her camper, 11-year-old Caleb, spent Tuesday trying to hook the big one. Jade Rodriguez and her camper, 11-year-old Caleb, spent Tuesday trying to hook the big one.
Tuesday the fun for the campers was down by the lake. Tuesday the fun for the campers was down by the lake.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

Every child should have a chance to go to camp. That's the idea behind Hope's Crossing Camp, a week-long camp for kids with physical and cognitive challenges.

Jade Rodriguez and her camper, 11-year-old Caleb, spent Tuesday trying to hook the big one.

This is Jade's fourth year to be a counselor at Hope's Crossing Camp - she loves working with the kids.

"They just get the opportunity to not care about anything but having fun," she said.

Tuesday the fun for the campers was down by the lake.

"I think they get to do a lot of things they might not normally get to do," Rodriguez said.

Like go fishing with Dick Faurot, or canoeing.

Kayla and her counselor, Aubry Wolfe, paddled around the lake.

It doesn't take long to recognize every camper has a counselor, a buddy.

"That's our goal, is to be camper/counselor one to one," Susan Pierce said.

Pierce and her dad started the camp six years ago and it's growing - this year 34 campers - and it's free.

For the kids, there is a freedom there - freedom to be who they are. Freedom from what they can't do and to try new things.

For the counselors, it’s a special experience.

"You can't have a bad day when you are here with these kids," Rodriguez said.

Hope's Crossing Camp is a once a year experience. If you'd like to help or know a child who might want to attend, you can find more information here.

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