The Easterseals Iowa Respite program provides temporary care for children and adults with disabilities, allowing parents/caregivers a break while providing the clients with a safe and supported social environment. Regularly scheduled respite weekends are held at Easterseals Iowa Camp Sunnyside twice monthly. Emergency care is also available. Respite services provide all the amenities at Camp Sunnyside including boating, swimming, horseback riding and much more.
Respite serves children age four and older and adults.
Funding Accepted: Amerigroup, Iowa Total Care, Fee for Service/HIPP Medicaid Waiver, Private Pay
To Apply for Respite Services
Once you have completed the application and have all the required materials, please send them to Camp Sunnyside by one of the following methods:
Mail or Drop Off: Easterseals Iowa, Attn: Camp Program and Support Specialist, 401 NE 66th Ave, Des Moines, IA 50313
If you are a new client in Easterseals Iowa Respite services, you will be contacted by our Intake Coordinator once the application and all other required materials have been received. After the intake process is complete, you will have the opportunity to register for Respite services (see below).
Leadership Development Track
The Leadership Development Track begins with our B.O.L.D. (Boys Outdoor Leadership Development) and G.O.L.D. (Girls Outdoor Leadership Development) programs in which boys and girls ages 6-12 develop skills in the following areas; Leadership, Challenge, Critical Thinking, Team Work, Volunteering, Healthy Lifestyle, Responsibility, and Wilderness Education. These programs will operate in tandem and many activities will be completed together. Upon completion of B.O.L.D. and G.O.L.D., and once age requirements are met, campers will have the opportunity to apply for our LIT (Leader in Training) program. LIT is a co-ed program in which campers ages 13-15 will participate in additional leadership development activities as a pre-requisite to our CIT (Counselor in Training) program. CIT is a program for campers ages 16+ which focuses on; counselor qualities, job skills, citizenship, and adventure specializations.
Partcipants will be given the opportunity to be a peer mentor to younger campers on the Leadership Development Track.
The goal of this track is to develop young leaders who are confident, have good character, and are committed to a life of learning, developing self and communities.
B.O.L.D. & G.O.L.D. (Boys and Girls Outdoor Leadership Development ages 6-12)
The B.O.L.D. and G.O.L.D. program is for boys and girls ages 6-12 who can be supported in a 1:5 ratio. It has designated counselors and focuses on the traditional activities of camp with additional activities structured around the following: Leadership, Challenge, Critical Thinking, Team Work, Volunteering, Healthy Lifestyle, Safety, and Wilderness Education. These programs will operate in tandem and most activities will be completed together. There may be times where the group divides for a more individualized learning experience.
Campers in these programs will be expected to follow our Promise and Law:
“On my honor, I will try: to be committed to my personal growth and independence, to contribute to my community, and to live by the BOLD/GOLD Law.”
“I will do my best to be loyal and have integrity, to find my purpose and act upon it. To be responsible and to persevere in all things. To take initiative, be respectful, and be a contributing member of my team.”
Complete the B.O.L.D. Application or complete the G.O.L.D. Application.
L.I.T. (Leader in Training ages 13-15)
The Leader in Training Program is designed for campers ages 13-15 who can be supported in a 1:8 ratio. This is a co-ed program and has designated counselors. This program focuses on the traditional activities of camp with additional activities structured around leadership. This program specifically looks at our Counselor Qualities and begins to break them down into observable actions and language. LIT’s will attend Leadership Academy where they will focus being a good role model, breaking down our counselor qualities into observable actions and language, and beginning to assist with camp activities. Complete the L.I.T. Application.
C.I.T. (Counselor in Training (ages 16+)
The CIT Program is designed for campers ages 16+ who can be supported in a 1:10 ratio. This is a co-ed program and has designated counselors. This program focuses on the traditional activities of camp with additional activities structured around developing in our Counselor Qualities, Job Skills, Citizenship, and Adventure Specializations. CIT’s will assist counselors in various camp activities, including arts and crafts, sports and games, meals, and evening programs. CIT’s will also be involved with the planning and hosting of our community dances, as well as having the opportunity to volunteer in the community during regularly scheduled camp weekends. Complete the C.I.T. Application.
Emergency Respite is available on a case-by-case basis for families in crisis. Families inquiring about emergency respite should contact the camp office. Caregivers who may qualify for emergency respite include; illness (physical, mental, or emotional), needing hospitalization, needing to attend a funeral or wake, needing to reduce stress level, needing drug/alcohol counseling or support, having employment or work related issues, having a family emergency or need.
To Request Respite Sessions
Registration for weekend respite is done on a quarterly basis. You will not be able to register for a quarter until 8:00 a.m. of the specified opening date. If you are using waiver funding, please talk to your case manager before submitting the online request form in order to make sure you have enough waiver units to cover all of the respite weekends requested. You will receive a letter confirming the weekends you are registered for.
1st Quarter 2022: January, February March
Open Date: December 1, 2021, 8:30 a.m.
Online Request Form: https://forms.office.com/r/fW7NCU3isD
2nd Quarter 2022: April, May, June
Open Date: March 1, 2022, 8:30 a.m.
Online Request Form: TBA
3rd Quarter 2022: July, August September
Open Date: June 3, 2022, 8:30 a.m.
Online Request Form: TBA
4th Quarter 2022: October, November, December
Open Date: September 1, 2022, 8:30 a.m.
Online Request Form: TBA
Please note, this online form is a request only and NOT a confirmed registration. You will be contacted via mail/e-mail confirming the weekends you are registered for.
If you should have any questions, please contact our Program and Support Specialist at 515-309-2375 or firstname.lastname@example.org.