Camp Kawartha

Douro-Dummer, Ontario
People on wheelchair experiencing Camp Kawartha

Project Description

Camp Kawartha’s mission is to provide children and youth with opportunities to learn through experience, to grow in mind and body, and to become active stewards of their human and natural communities. The camp is striving to be inclusive and ensure everyone, regardless of their abilities - physical or otherwise - can experience the joy and magic of camp. The Barrier Buster grant will allow the camp to make their climbing wall accessible, providing a unique experience for all guests.

Project Team Q&A

  1. Why did you decide to break down barriers in your community?

    We don’t focus on what people can’t do. Instead, we want to celebrate all the marvelous things that people can do. We want to open doors, to recognize that everyone has something meaningful and important to contribute to our camping community. The decision to make our climbing wall accessible means we are opening up an opportunity and its powerful team-building potential to every visitor and camper. With this, we send out a loud and important message to our community: everyone is capable, and everyone can participate as a valued member of our team.

  2. How is this project going to make a difference in your community?

    Traditionally, climbing has been seen as an able-bodied pastime. Yet those who experience the thrill of climbing report how significant the support, the striving, and the goal setting is to creating that irreplaceable feeling of being part of a close-knit team.

    As far as we know, this accessible wall will be the only one of its kind in our region. We want to use this team-building tool to reach out to populations that traditionally may not have been included in adventure programming – those with physical and mental disabilities, those who are marginalized, and those who are overlooked because they do not fit the norm.

    Ironically, we built a wall in order to remove a wall to participation. Of that, we are very proud.

  3. What’s the best thing about being a Barrier Buster?

    Removing a barrier empowers us to think about how to remove other barriers we may never have thought about. It helps us to see our facilities in a brand new way. For example, by inviting the Peterborough Council for Persons with Disabilities to conduct an audit of our facilities, we are beginning to find more ways to remove barriers and create new barrier-free facilities and programs.

Awareness Event


June 9, 2017

Accessible Climbing Wall Grand Opening

Location: Camp Kawartha, 1010 Birchview Road, Douro-Dummer, ON

Time: 1:45pm-4:00pm

Description: Special guests were welcomed by Camp Kawartha Board members and staff. The official part of the event took place at the wall site, with an Emcee providing opening comments. The Emcee invited a representative from the Amigos, a local student group with various physical and mental disabilities, as well as funders and dignitaries, to help cut the ribbon. The Amigos then inaugurated the wall with a climb demonstrating the many new accessibility features. Invited guests and media moved to the Rotary Hall for presentations and speeches, with refreshments served.

For more information, please contact:
Jacob Rodenburg or Susan Ramey  at or