You are exactly where you need to be.
The mission of Camp Sunshine is to provide a camping experience for persons with developmental disabilities in an inclusive environment that embraces their recreational, emotional, physical, spiritual and relational needs.
Camp Sunshine is a grace-filled, transformative, inspiring, inclusive, and empowering summer camp that is powered by campers, counselors, families, donors, and volunteers.
What We Offer
There is joyful spirit about Camp Sunshine that is transformative for every person who attends – whether you’re a camper, counselor or volunteer. We promote through words and actions an atmosphere that honors all people with total acceptance and unconditional love.
It is a place for campers to feel included, to learn from others and grow in friendship. It is a place for volunteers to receive as much as they give and to learn as much as they teach. Most of all, we have fun!
Since 1983, Camp Sunshine has been offering people ages 12 – 50 with developmental disabilities the opportunity to attend summer camp in a safe, caring and inclusive environment. We offer 4 day/3 night camp sessions at two locations in Michigan--Camp Blodgett in West Olive and Camp Henry in Newaygo. However, you can find our office in Holland, MI.
All camp activities are designed to meet the recreational, emotional, physical, spiritual and relational needs of our campers. For this reason, we offer opportunities to campers that expand far beyond a summer camp experience. Each year, hundreds of campers flock to the powerful culture of inclusion that embraces all who attend. Camp Sunshine is designed to be intentionally inclusive where ALL are welcomed and loved for who they are.
Uniquely, each camper is paired 1:1 with a volunteer counselor for their entire 4 days at camp. These high school or college volunteers come from 55 schools across the state and country. Camp Sunshine is a transformative experience for every person who participates--campers, camper families, counselors, and volunteers.
We invite you to become a part of the Camp Sunshine community as a camper, counselor, volunteer, or financial supporter. Our summer camp is a place to feel included, to learn from others and to grow in friendship. It is a place for all participants to receive as much as they give and to learn as much as they teach. Most of all, we have so much fun!
There is something sacred about being part of a group where everyone is loved and accepted
“just the way they are.”
1983: Camp Sunshine began when several parents requested a summer camp experience for their children with special needs. The late Marcy Vanderwel founded Camp Sunshine at Geneva Camp and Conference Center with volunteers who provided a one-on-one camper/counselor ratio for 23 original campers.
1998: Cindy Terlouw was named Executive Director following Marcy Vanderwel's retirement. Camp Sunshine was incorporated as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with a volunteer Board of Directors.
2000: Camp Sunshine moved to Camp Blodgett, located along the Lake Michigan shoreline in West Olive, Michigan. This move allowed better scheduling and increased capacity. Camp Sunshine doubled its number of volunteers and campers served. Founder, Marcy Vanderwel, passed away in August after the summer camp session.
2014: Camp Sunshine added a second location at Camp Henry in Newyago, Michigan. This addition allowed two additional four-day sessions and more campers.
2017: Taylor Antoski was named the Executive Director and Brie Richardson became Program Director. Camper and volunteer capacity continued to grow.
Today: We remain committed to our one-on-one camper/counselor ratio and continue to rely on committed volunteers and community support.