Camp Courageous, Inc.

Currently serving individuals with developmental disabilities.
Currently seeking referrals.
Agency Provider


12701 Waterville-Swanton

Whitehouse, Ohio 43571
Main: (419) 875-6828
Fax: (419) 875-5598
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Steven Kiessling
Executive Director
Phone: (419) 875-6828
Cell: 419-344-5704
Chelsea Banas
Office Manager
Phone: 419-875-6828


Individual Budget/Private Pay

Supported Living

Level One Waiver

Home Maker Personal Care

Level One Waiver: Adult Day Services

Adult Day Support

Individual Options Waiver

Community Respite
Home Maker Personal Care

Individual Options Waiver: Adult Day Services

Adult Day Support

Self Empowered Life Funding Waiver (SELF-Waiver)

Community Respite

Self Empowered Life Funding Waiver (SELF-Waiver): Adult Day Services

Adult Day Support


No References Provided


Agency Profile

a) Describe your agency’s philosophy of providing services and supports to individuals with disabilities.

Our mission is to foster socialization, independence and a better quality of life for people with developmental disabilities through outdoor recreational activities. We pride ourselves in not only providing these services through residential and day camps but offering outdoor recreation and camp programming that highlights the abilities of our campers while recognizing the strengths of all of our participants.

For the parents and guardians of our campers, we offer them the opportunity to receive much needed respite- a time to re-energize, vacation or simply catch up on home projects and other day to day tasks. When their loved ones return home, they are better rested and refocused so they can continue to provide the best care possible.

b) Describe your agency’s staff orientation and training process.

All staff are personally interviewed and hired by the Executive Director. Each individual offered a position must first successfully pass an FBI and BCI&I criminal background check as well as a review of the Abuse Registry and National Sex Offender Registry prior to employment. Staff go through a vigorous 3 day orientation/training where they are certified in CPR and First Aid, learn behavioral supports and crisis intervention (as trained by Behavioral Specialists from the Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities) and review Behavioral Support Plans of all applicable campers. Throughout training, team building activities, "real" camp scenarios and agency policies and procedures are presented.

c) How are individuals with disabilities involved in selecting the agency’s staff that work with them?

Counselors are assigned to individual campers based on our knowledge of our campers and the personalities of our staff. It is our goal to pair campers with staff who will work successfully with the campers to ensure they are not only safe but have the highest degree of success while at Camp. Staff pairings are reviewed on an ongoing basis to ensure campers are working with staff who will best meet the needs of an individual camper. If needed, we will adjust pairings to ensure our campers' success.

d) Describe your agency’s availability and flexibility in scheduling services and supports (days and hours available, areas of Lucas County willing to provide services, etc).

We provide services to all of Lucas County as well as the entire state of Ohio. Our services consist of 7 weeks of residential camp and 2 weeks of day camp throughout June, July and August. We also offer weekend respites during the summer and into the fall. Adults are also offered the opportunity to attend day camp during one or more of our residential camps.

e) Describe how services will be provided in the event of an agency staff illness or emergency.

In the event of a staff illness or emergency, additional staff will be scheduled to ensure proper camper ratios so that the safety and well being of our participants is not compromised.

f) Describe how your agency would address individual or family concerns.

Concerns are addressed on an ongoing basis depending on the severity of the concern. In the event an individual or family member/guardian has an immediate concern regarding the safety or well being of one of our participants, the Executive Director or his designee will immediately address the concern. If appropriate, personnel from LCDD (i.e. SASS, MUI Unit, Behavior Specialist) will be contacted to assist with addressing the concern. All steps will be taken to remedy any issues or develop plans so that potential issues will not occur in the future.

g) Describe your agency’s specific strategies for increasing community inclusion and involvement for individuals served.

Camp Courageous, Inc. is not a community based organization. We provide exclusive services to the developmentally disabled community. With that said, we also make it paramount that our staff and direct care volunteers are continually engaging our participants to ensure they are informed about agency activities, but also have the opportunity to freely choose which activities they wish to participate. Staff will then assist them as needed so that they may be fully integrated in all camp activities.

h) Does your agency offer one to one services?


i) Does your agency offer planned group outings or activities?


j) Identify your agency's areas of expertise.

Camp Courageous, Inc. specializes in providing residential, day and week camp experiences for children and adults with developmental disabilities. We work with all ages (6 to 80) and all types of developmental disabilities, from those who are completely independent to those requiring 1:1 care. Our trained and caring staff include counselors, program staff, lifeguards and nursing to meet all of the social, behavioral and medical needs of our campers. Our skill camp chef can meet all dietary restrictions many of our campers have while providing homemade, well balanced and delicious meals.

Camp Courageous has been providing our services for nearly 50 years. Over the past 10 years, we have increased our numbers served from approximately 125 individuals to over 300. We continually seek to upgrade and improve our facilities as well as adjust our program offerings so campers and visitors have the best possible experience.

Our Executive Director has been with Camp for 6 years and many of our counselors have been with us for more than 5. Camp Courageous is accredited through the American Camp Association- meaning we meet the highest standards in a host of criteria from Health and Safety to Program Implementation.

k) How many individuals does your agency serve in Lucas County?

41 or more

l) What is the total number of individuals served by your agency Statewide?


m) How long has your agency been providing certified homemaker personal care services in Lucas County to individuals with developmental disabilities?

7 or more

n) Which describes your agency:

Non Profit

o) Are your agency staff certified by the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities to provide medication administration?


p) Is your agency willing to provide Level One services?


q) How many staff in your agency provide direct support services?

more than 25

r) Does your agency have both male and female staff?


s) What is the average length of service for your agency’s direct support staff?

2-3 seasons

t) Describe your agency's plan for continuing education and on-going training for agency staff?

At the beginning of each season, our seasonal staff complete a 2 day intensive training that covers behavioral management and supports, crisis prevention, scenarios specific to the camp environment and all agency policies and practices. Our full time staff complete annual training through the LCBDD as well as supplemental trainings offered through a variety of organizations.

u) Please describe your agency’s internal system for quality assurance.

Camp Courageous, Inc. is a Ohio certified Community Respite provider and therefore must adhere to all practices outlined by the Ohio Board of Developmental Disabilities. This includes but is not limited to periodic county audits and site visits. We are also accredited by the American Camp Association and must meet a rigorous set of standards that include health and wellness, facilities, programming and staff development. Additionally, we are licensed by the Lucas County Health Department as a commercial food service provider and are inspected twice each year. Lastly, our pool facility is inspected each summer to ensure proper operation and maintenance of our facility and proper credentials of our staff. Through these many entities, we record all incidences that occur at camp and report them to the appropriate entity. We do an annual review of adverse incidents to track any patterns or commonalities. We regularly poll providers and participating families for feedback. Lastly, our Board of Trustees meet regularly to identify and discuss any potential risk management concerns and address them as needed.

v) Include here any information about the agency that you want shared with an individual, family or guardian that will assist him/her to decide whether your agency is the best choice of provider.

Often, families who care for individuals with developmental disabilities need respite from providing that care. Camp Courageous, Inc. is a perfect solution. Families or guardians can be assured that while their dependents are in our care, those individuals will be in a safe, caring and professional environment where they can be comfortable, engaged and assisted to reach their highest potential in a stimulating, nurturing and fun environment. While their dependents are with us, the families or guardians can rest and recharge their batteries so that they can continue to be the best care providers they can be. For the individual, we pride ourselves in the fact that we offer a unique experience where they can be themselves, have zero stigmas attached to their developmental disabilities, make new friends and build lasting memories of a great time at Camp.

- If yes, describe

On an as needed basis, we provide 1:1 care for our participants. This may include assistance with activities of daily living or, in some cases, behavioral management support.

- If yes, describe

All activities at Camp Courageous, Inc. are open to all participants as they desire.