OLLU holds second annual 'Camp Jersig' for children with cleft lip/palate

Posted on Monday, June 11, 2012

OLLU hosted its second annual Camp Jersig—a two-week long day camp for children with cleft lip and/or palate. The camp took place June 11-15 and 18-22, 2012 at the Harry Jersig Speech-Language-Hearing Center.

The first camp of its kind in the area, Camp Jersig helps participants improve their speech skills and grow socially and mentally as they receive speech therapies through group activities and individual treatment sessions. Social services are also offered to parents and caregivers of the campers.

Speech-Language Pathology graduate students are trained to evaluate and treat children during the camp, which is staffed by OLLU faculty and graduate students in the Communication Disorders and Social Work programs.

The camp provided services for eleven children ages four to 10. The campers received individual and group sessions in the form of fun activities like story time, gross motor play, and fine motor arts and crafts. The fun, comfortable environment established by the camp staff allowed the campers to receive treatment without fear of being teased about their appearance or the way they talk.

 2012 Camp Jersig
 Camper receives an individual session during
 reading time.
 Campers participate in circle time.
In addition to the individual and group sessions, the campers took a field trip to Morgan’s Wonderland and a participated in a carnival on the last day complete with face painting, a moon bounce, popcorn, snow cones and many other activities and treats.

Gordon Hartman, founder of the Gordon Hartman Family Foundation, was an integral part in allowing OLLU to provide this all-expenses paid camp for participants. As a new sponsor for 2012, the foundation donated $16,490 to help fund the camp. “We were grateful that OLLU made us aware of the wonderful work they do with the cleft lip/palate summer programs. This program has such a profound effect on not only the children but on their families as well. It made perfect sense for the Gordon Hartman Family Foundation to help fund this program and I’m pleased we had the opportunity to do it,” Hartman commented.

The Texas Cavaliers Charitable Foundation, a sponsor from last year, donated $6,000 to help fund this year's camp. 

Several local restaurants also donated lunch for the camp. See the sponsors page for a list of all Camp Jersig 2012 sponsors

Christine Carmichael, PhD, assistant professor of OLLU’s Communication Disorders program and Camp Jersig coordinator, expressed her gratitude for the donations made by the Gordon Hartman Family Foundation, the Texas Cavaliers Charitable Foundation and all of the lunch sponsors. “We appreciate all of their donations. We would not be able to hold this camp without their support. We are fortunate to be able to provide this experience for the children free of charge,” Dr. Carmichael said.

The Harry Jersig Speech-Language-Hearing Center is the training facility of OLLU’s Communication and Learning Disorders Program and serves as a clinic dedicated to children and adults with communication disorders in the San Antonio area. Visit the Center online.