Second year of Camp Amy kicks off to provide inclusive experience for kids

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- This week marks year two of Camp Amy, a project that gives a Bowling Green woman just as much joy as the kids it benefits.

Kids take part in crafts as Camp Amy takes off on Tuesday. (Photo: Madison Martin)

It started up in 2018 as a way to give the camp experience to her son JW, who has autism.

"He's so much fun and lovable. He can just be a little quirky sometimes, and we all can. Things like this allow me to explain it without having to say it," Amy Hardin explained, the creator of the camp.

Now, over a dozen neighborhood kids take part in the activities, as they both have fun and learn more about others.

"The whole reason behind this camp was really to try to promote inclusion and loving those who are different. And these kids just do it; and I think it's just part of their generation," said Hardin. "They're surrounded by different people and they just accept them for who they are and it's an absolutely beautiful thing to see."

The kids take part in wide variety of activities, ranging from crafts and snack time, to obstacle courses and dunk tanks.

This year they'll be teaching kids more concepts about entrepreneurship and giving back, like having a lemonade stand whose profits will benefit Stuff the Bus.

It's something Hardin wants to keep bringing back to the kids, and a program that's received interest from others.

"I have great relationships with other autism parents across the country," Hardin explained. "There are several who have seen us do Camp Amy and they're interested in learning about the program and how we come up with it, so I'm hoping that this inspires somebody to do it maybe in their neighborhood."

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