Camp Rainbow Connection is a week-long respite camp for adults with intellectual disabilities. The staff and volunteers are dedicated to providing a wonderful and enriching summer program for each camper, along with a week of respite for families and caregivers. The theme for CRC 2024 will celebrate the Olympic Games!
Camp Rainbow Connection is a week-long respite camp for individuals with intellectual disabilities. CRC started in 1985 at Westview on the James, a camp of the Charlottesville, Rappahannock River, and Richmond Districts of the Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church. That first year, there were 25 campers and a small staff of 15 volunteers. CRC grew to two weeks while at the Blackstone Conference and Retreat Center. CRC is currently held at Richard Bland College in Petersburg, VA and is resourced by the Missional Engagement Ministries Office.
The staff and volunteers of Camp Rainbow are dedicated to providing a wonderful and enriching summer program for each camper, along with a week of respite for families and care givers. Campers participate in a variety of activities including Bible class, music, science, arts and crafts, games, dancing and special activities. Our mission is one of healing and acceptance towards all God’s people. Because we are a ministry of the Virginia Conference of The United Methodist Church (UMC), participation of people of all backgrounds, ability levels, heritages, and faiths is encouraged. Camp Rainbow Connection has a new theme each year. For 2024, our theme will celebrate the Olympics! Our activities are anchored in the theme and we are looking forward to uniting for an epic week!
Camp Rainbow Connection is a wonderful expression of God’s love. However, it is NOT for everyone due to its structure and location. Campers spend the week with others of various ability levels. Each camper is paired with a staff “buddy.” Staff members give of their time as volunteers.
Click here to submit a camper application
Criteria for Admission
Camp Rainbow Connection is a wonderful expression of God’s love. However, it is NOT for everyone due to its structure and location. Campers spend the week with others of various ability levels. Each camper is paired with a staff “buddy.” Staff members give of their time as volunteers. For this reason, camp is not appropriate for individuals who do not meet the following criteria.
The potential camper must:
- Have a mild to moderate level of intellectual disability although other disabilities may exist.
- Be at least 16 years of age or older.
- Perform activities of daily living such as dressing, eating, bathing, and toileting that require little assistance. Note: An individual will not be admitted to camp if he/she cannot control bowel or urine elimination.
- Participate in all camp activities as appropriate.
- Demonstrate no physical and/or emotional threat to self or others and require little care in terms of his/her behavior.
- Document from a physician that no recent hospitalizations have occurred.
Camper Registration Requirements
All applications are due by February 1. Space is limited and will be filled on a first come, first served basis. Please note, we reserve additional space for new campers. The cost of the camp is $650. Limited financial assistance is available upon request. An additional nonrefundable APPLICATION FEE of $50 is required before an application will be considered.
I love being at camp rainbow with a bunch of friends, volunteers and buddy. It is so wonderful. They always ask me how I’m feeling and I love this place.
I think the things they do at Camp Rainbow that I really enjoy are the music class and putting on the talent show and having a dance
I like rainbow because you get to do music and art and science and bible.
How can our church help?
Join us in prayer
Please pray for Richard Bland College as they receive Camp Rainbow Connection this summer. Please pray that we have all the volunteer staff we need for our camp session. Pray that those staff members will be the hands and feet of Jesus for our campers. Also pray for all staff members of CRC as they prepare for an awesome week. You can pray for our campers and their caregivers that they will experience the love and acceptance that only God can provide. Pray that the caregivers receive a week of much needed respite. Pray that the campers experience joy and encounter Christ while they are at camp.
Sign up to volunteer
This is a big need! We are always looking to have new folks join us for our camp sessions. Consider inviting a CRC representative to speak at your church. We also need drivers and church vans to help us transport campers.
Collect and Support us!
We are a self-funded ministry of the VA Conference. Your church can help us by collecting supplies to donate to camp. Would your church like to sponsor a camp activity? Contact Stacy ([email protected]) to find out what is needed. Would you like to support us by shopping from our Amazon wishlist?
Your financial support allows us to purchase much needed supplies, provide scholarships for campers and continue to fulfill our mission to provide a week of healing and acceptance towards all God’s people.
You can mail a check made payable to “VAUMC” with “Camp Rainbow” in the memo line to:
Camp Rainbow Connection
PO Box 5606
Glen Allen, VA 23058