A Camp For Kids Who Don't Feel Pain


"We're able to pass that information along [to other parents]," said Blocker. "That's something you rely on pain to tell you that 'my eyes are hurting.' They don't have that luxury."

The day-to-day schedule of Camp Painless But Hopeful, which is held at a campsite designed for sick children, features plenty of activities from zip lining to canoeing and crafts. Although there is a medical lodge onsite, Blocker said the goal for the three-day long camp is to have as normal an experience as possible without excluding kids from activities just because they could possibly get hurt.

"Several of the parents are registered nurses so we are covered," said Blocker, who points out that the camper's parents will be the most familiar with keeping them safe anyway.

Blocker said founding the camp and running it for two years has been a great experience, but she says she will be happy to hand off duties eventually.

"Ashlyn said she wants to take my job as camp director [when she's older], and that's just fine," said Blocker.

When the family first drove to the site, Blockers said she remembered watching Ashlyn from her side-view mirror, looking for her reaction. As they entered the camp site, Ashlyn gasped, "This is exactly what my dream looks like!"

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