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Camp Abilities Ireland

April 15, 2019 - April 19, 2019

|Recurring Event (See all)

A loss of sight, never a loss of vision

CAMP ABILITIESCamp Abilities is a residential, sport and physical activity camp for children with vision impairments.

At Camp Abilities Ireland, we give children the opportunity to try new sports and activities they might not have had the chance to do in the past. By giving the children the chance to try new activities, not only could they find something they really enjoy, but their self-esteem can increase, often giving them the confidence to advocate for themselves in their own community. Since our first Camp Abilities camp in Ireland, campers have taken part in rock climbing, canoeing, kayaking, orienteering, soccer, goal ball, judo, swimming, horse riding… and many, many more!

Camp Abilities takes place every year during the first week in Easter in Cappanalea Outdoor Education Centre in County Kerry. Click here to learn more about the Centre.

Since 2017 Camp Abilities Ireland is supported by Transitions Optical.


Get a taste of the camp

Who is Camp for?

Camp Abilities is for children with a vision impairment as their primary disability.

If you are between 10 and 15 years of age on the first day of camp, you could be eligible to be a Camper

If you are aged between 16 and 17 years and have previously been a camper, you could be eligible to be a Leader in Training.

If you are over 18, you too can apply to be a Volunteer.


APPLY TO BE A CAMPER HEREApplications Close on Friday 15th of February.

What is a Camper?

If you’re between 10 and 15 years of age and have a vision impairment as your primary disability, you can apply to come to Camp Abilities! We have kids applying from all over Ireland!

Why come to Camp?

At Camp, you will get the chance to try out lots of different sports and activities, make new friends, and have fun!

“Camp Abilities was a game changer for Aaron. He had never been away on his own before and was really nervous about going. On the drive down from Tallaght he was constantly complaining about a sore tummy and that he wasn’t well enough to stay for a week, etc., but within minutes of arriving in Camp he settled right in. Since being in the camp Aaron has got so much more independent and confident and isn’t afraid to try new things or experiences.” – Parent

Camp Abilities 2019 information – Campers

Cara in association with the NCBI and IT Tralee will host the 10th Camp Abilities Ireland. It is scheduled to take place from Monday 15th April – Friday 19th April 2019 and will take place at Cappanalea Outdoor Education Centre in County Kerry. (See link to map here)

What is Camp Abilities?

  • A 5 day (4 nights) residential sports and recreation camp for children (aged 10-15 years) with a vision impairment as their primary disability.
  • Our main purpose is to empower each camper to be physically active, improve their health and independence and help them move onto mainstream sports and/or continue with Vision Sports Ireland.

Please note: Eligible campers must be aged 10-15 by the first day of Camp, which is 15th April 2019.

If your child is interested in attending camp, please complete the Online Registration Form Here.

Due to increased demand in the Camp this year, all registration forms will be reviewed and places are not guaranteed

Priority will be given to campers who have not been at Camp Abilities before or have attended for a lesser number of years.

Payment: We do not request payment with the initial online application form. Once campers receive notification of their selection to attend camp we will then issue payment instructions

The camp cost is €175, which includes all activities, accommodation and meals.

Please note: Camp Abilities may recommend an alternative for your child based on their needs with regards to participation in the camp, i.e. day attendance only, shorter duration of the residential camp, participation for specific activities only etc. This recommendation will be based on the best suitable option for your child to gain maximum experience in the camp’s activities.

In addition, if your child is not successful in the selection process we will provide you with information on other possible opportunities for your child in sport and physical activity. We are currently actively engaging with other agencies to obtain sufficient information to enable your child to continue participating in sport and physical activity.

What to bring to Camp?

To help you get ready for Camp, here is a list of what you should pack.

Leader in Training (LIT)

SIGN UP TO BE AN LIT HERESign Up Closes on Friday 1st of February

“We are looking for young aspiring leaders who are passionate about sport and physical activity and who are keen to learn, grow and share as part of our LIT programme”

Gearóid O’Doherty, Camp Abilities Coordinator

What is the LIT Programme?

The Leader in Training programme will provide you with the opportunity to be among likeminded peers who have a passion for living an active and healthy lifestyle. It will equip you with knowledge and skills to contribute to your lifelong participation in sport and physical activity. You will receive practical opportunities to experience new exciting and perhaps challenging activities and focus on developing your leadership skills that will support you in your goals of participating in sport and physical activity. In addition to all of the above, this programme will provide a platform for you to be a role model and activity advocate for the younger campers at Camp Abilities, where you will have the opportunity to assist in a leadership role in elements of the camper activity schedule.
This is an opportunity not to be missed!

When and where?

Camp Abilities 2019 takes place from Monday 15th April – Friday 19th April 2019 and will take place at Cappanalea Outdoor Education Centre in County Kerry. (See link to map here)

Please note: Eligible Leaders in Training must be aged 16 or 17 by the first day of Camp, which is 15th April 2019.

If you are interested in attending camp as a Leader in Training, please complete the Online Sign Up Here.

The deadline to Sign Up is Friday 1st of February 2019.

Due to limited places on this programme, all registration forms will be reviewed and shortlisted. Applicants will be selected for telephone interviews as part of the selection process. Places are not guaranteed

Payment: We do not request payment with the initial online application form. Once LITs receive notification of their selection to attend camp we will then issue payment instructions.

The camp cost is €175, which includes all activities, accommodation and meals.



Applications for Camp 2019 have closed. If interested in applying for future camps please contact Gearóid O’Doherty (Camp Coordinator)

Follow Stages 1-3 to Apply Today!

STAGE 1: The Roles of a Volunteer

Without volunteers, Camp Abilities would be not possible. We need your help to ensure a successful, action-packed week of activities with lots of fun and laughter. Our volunteers are an integral part of making camp happen!

  • Everyone who works directly with the campers in Camp Abilities is referred to as a CARA. One of the most important aspects of your role as a CARA is to support and encourage each camper to participate in all aspects of the camp activities and in doing so maximise the benefit they gain from the camp. This can include anything from waking the campers up in the morning, helping them overcome fears, trying new sports, grow in confidence, make new friends and everything in-between.
  • You will work as part of a Volunteer team to ensure the safety and welfare of the campers, and above all, make their experience a FUN one. It is important that this relationship is built on trust, empathy, respect and acceptance. A CARA can have a huge influence on a camper’s experience especially if it is their first time at camp, so please fulfil your role to the best of your ability!
  • Other elements of a CARA’s role may involve assisting in the coordination of the everyday tasks associated with the running of camp as well as the set up and assistance in activities. CARAs really help the flow of camp, ensure everything is prepared and ready in advance.
  • Everyone has a unique contribution to make to the camp.
  • Everyone should work together to use each other’s talents and develop a partnership to ensure everyone gets the best out of the camp.

STAGE 2: Check the Requirements

If selected:

  • You must be at least 18 years or over.
  • You need to have attended (or are scheduled to attend prior to Camp) a Child Awareness & Protection Course’ or ‘Child Protection in Sport Workshop’.
  • You need to be available for the full length of the camp session and to attend the induction training session.

What training will you receive?

A bit nervous? Do not worry!

All selected volunteers will receive training prior to the camp and will be supported throughout the camp by the camp committee and support staff. Induction training is mandatory and usually takes place on the Sunday before Camp begins.


Camp Dates: Sun 14th – Fri 19th of April 2018

Location: Cappanalea Outdoor Education Centre, Kerry
Successful applicants MUST be available to attend Induction Training on Sunday 14th April
Deadline for applications is Wednesday 12th of December 2018 at 5pm

Please complete all necessary fields and uploads the online application below.

To apply to volunteer, please complete the following

1. Download the required Garda Vetting documents here to fill out and upload copies of the completed forms to your application.
* If applying from outside of Ireland, you will need to provide Police Clearance from your country.
Download Garda Vetting Documents Here

2. Complete online Application Form and upload to required documentation within.

Before Completing you will need to have:

  • A friendly photo of you that we may show a camper and their family prior to attending camp (attach to this form)
  • Details of 2 referees (please note referees may not be friends/family/relatives and must be external to Cara or Camp Abilities Staff)
  • To upload: Completed Garda Vetting Letter of Identification and 2 forms of identity (photocopied and stamped for verification)
  • To upload: Completed Vetting Application Form (E-Vetting Inviter Form NVB1)
    Download blank forms above.
  • To upload: A copy of your certificate for ‘Child Awareness & Protection Course’ or ‘Child Protection in Sport Workshop’

* if you do not have this done now, you can proceed with the application but must have it completed before April 2019, prior to attending camp.
Please contact Gearóid for further information on where you can do this course in your local area.

Apply to Volunteer Online Here

Want to know more?

Our team are here to help! Should you have any queries, please feel free to our Camp Abilities Team.

Gearóid O Doherty
Camp Abilities Coordinator
Facebook: Click here to visit the Facebook page
Tel: (066) 714 4250

Doireann Ní Mhuircheartaigh
Camper Liaison
Tel: 066 7144245

We are happy to help!

Best of Camp throughout the years


April 15, 2019
April 19, 2019
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