It’s your time to shine, girls.
January 26-27, 2018
The Woodlands believes that all people should be given the opportunity to reach their full potential. Through the DIVAS weekend, The Woodlands gives girls and women with disabilities that opportunity. In an atmosphere built around encouragement and support, The Woodlands DIVAS weekend can bring the community together and encourage further inclusion for individuals with disability.
The goal of the weekend is to promote self-confidence, inner beauty and diversity for children, youth, and teens ages 8 to 29 who have a disability or chronic illness. During the “girls-only” sleepover weekend, each participant receives a make-over, the opportunity to craft her own pageant sash, fashion headshots, and runway coaching. Unlike a beauty pageant, the program is non-competitive, focusing on displays of personality, humor, and empowerment.
Woodlands DIVAS culminates in a runway show held in the Woodlands Activities Center, followed by a reception.
Woodlands Weekend Retreats are occasions like no other for children and adults with disability and chronic illness that bring exposure to a variety of sports and recreation, Music, Creative Arts and Nature for all that attend. The Weekend Retreat programs provide opportunities for individuals to participate in a variety of meaningful and adapted activities that truly enrich their quality of life. Woodlands Weekend Retreats are designated to separate age groups and developed to promote creative expression and confidence. The Woodlands also applies routines for each participant to practice to demonstrate and teach activities of daily living within our environment and sleeping/bathing units. Transition skills and life-skills such as self-care, self-efficacy, teamwork and problem solving are also taught through our residential overnight model.
The retreat season runs throughout the school year from September to May, providing an exceptional opportunity to try out a Woodlands Weekend Retreat before committing to a whole week in the summer. Participants may also choose to experience the Woodlands Retreats as day programs and work their way towards an overnight visit. The Woodlands fosters an experience that creates a very healthy separation between camper and parent/caregiver. Woodlands camp experiences are ones that will last a lifetime and kick start each participants road to imagining all the possibilities they are able to achieve. The Woodlands offers camps for all ages, fostering sustainable friendships that will grow throughout the years within the Woodlands’ year-round “home away from home” environment. The year-round schedule also serves as the foundation for creating and maintaining sustainable friendships from season to season and year to year. Many participants attend month after month and develop their own unique communities and sense of individual belonging. Woodlands Retreats are a home away from home for both staff and participants alike.
Weekend Retreats run Friday evening through Sunday morning, with overnight accommodations provided in the accessible, barrier free and air-conditioned Woodlands Lodge …and sometimes under the stars in tents at our on-site campground. The lodge has 6 units, which house 8 campers each, in twin beds. Each unit is specially equipped and has accessible bathrooms and showers attached.
What to expect:
Participants check-in on Friday evening and check out on Sunday morning. They are assigned to a unit that sleeps 7 other campers with similar needs, interest and abilities and a Woodlands staff member. Campers are also assigned to a highly qualified and trained Woodlands Counselor who has completed the Woodlands Camp Academy Training and Leadership program. Counselors and health care staff are college students or emerging professionals in the fields of special education, social work, psychology, nursing, medicine fields, occupational therapy, recreational therapy or related areas. All campers rotate each day throughout the schedule of planned activities in 3 large groups with a staff ratio of 4 retreat participants to each counselor. This gives campers an opportunity to socialize and explore the possibilities that The Woodlands has available with support from our staff. Campers will eat all meals “family style” in the Dining Hall to support socialization and a sense of community.
*Participants are required to be able to self-regulate their own behaviors and need to be able to be redirected easily by staff in order to experience success with this program. We do encourage and support participants to bring their own support staff to any Woodlands programs.
Weekends Retreats focuses on the following 5 goals:
To provide opportunities to increase peer socialization and utilization of social skills for healthy relationships through recreational experiences.
To provide opportunities to increase independence with self-care through practicing activities of daily living in a supported environment.
To provide opportunities to increase participation in adapted recreational activities in a group environment.
To provide opportunities to improve self-perception through positive recreational experiences.
To provide opportunities to increase physical fitness through adapted physical activity and healthy cooking activities.