Fear Facers Summer Camp 2022

Fear Facers Summer Camp counselors hold a sign that reads Fear Facers Camp

For one week in June and one in July, campers between the ages of 7 and 15 with obsessive-compulsive disorder and/or anxiety gathered at Veterans Memorial Park in Gainesville, Florida for the annual Fear Facers Summer Camp hosted by the Center for OCD, Anxiety, and Related Disorders (COARD). They spent a week with medical and academic experts and counselors engaging in a number of fun but teachable activities to help them work through some of their personal challenges.

This year the Santa Fe Teaching Zoo made an appearance with a few friends to help campers with their fears and anxieties. They brought a box turtle, a snake, and a baby gator. Campers were able to learn about these critters and touch them. In addition to the zoo, University of Florida’s Department of Entomology stopped by with a Madagascar hissing cockroach, a tarantula, and a scorpion. To help campers learn some anxiety and self care coping skills, campers took part in yoga classes.

UF Entomology brought insets for campers to learn about and touch.

Concluding each week of camp, campers had the opportunity to slime their counselors and cool off on an inflatable waterslide with a popsicle as a reward for all their hard work facing their fears all week. Each camper was presented with a personalized medal to honor the unique obstacles they overcame during the week. Aside from daily individual and group therapy sessions, some other activities campers participated in throughout both weeks of camp were tie dying t-shirts, painting flower pots, playing “trashcan ball”, Pictionary with shaving cream using only feet, painting your “worry monsters”,  a talent-less show, a riddle scavenger hunt, marshmallow and spaghetti tower building competition, messy kickball with bases covered in slop, wooden ski races, and many more games and sports!

Keep an eye out for next year’s camp dates at https://coard.psychiatry.ufl.edu/fear-facer-summer-camp/

Check out our gallery of fun photos from camp 2022!