Introducing our Camp Director, JB Begue! Learn a little about him and his vision for our camp. Captions are available. More vlogs coming up, keep your eyes peeled!
Hello, I am the Camp Director for Bridging Hands Camps. I will be working with individuals who would like to attend our camp. My name is JB Begue (shows sign name – index finger under eye). I will share a little about myself and then share what my vision is for the camp, and for your kids.
Who am I? I was born Deaf and grew up in a hearing family. I grew up mainstreamed in school with an interpreter in Ohio, and graduated from high school in 2003. In 2005, I enrolled into Gallaudet University and graduated in 2014 – two years ago. Pretty recently. I have a BA degree in Psychology and a MA degree in Sign Language Education. Since then, for almost three years, I have been working at Towson University as an ASL instructor. The university is a little north of Baltimore. So, that’s a little bit about who I am. Also, I love animals, plants, nature, the outdoors, camping, kayaking, and more. The Camp Director position is perfect for me – I was thrilled when I first heard about it! I am eager to start being involved and promote a fun, interactive learning opportunity in nature. I’m ready for that!
My vision for Bridging Hands Camps is a group where everyone uses sign language – that is important. Yes, some may speak, such as KODAs, which is absolutely fine. The important thing is to demonstrate respect by using sign language to provide access to each camper. Even if there’s a variety of communication methods, beginning signers, cued speech, or spoken English – that’s fine! We will have a diverse group work together through communication access. We will start with having staff members who will be signing all the way, 24/7, for one week. Campers will look up to those staff members who will provide access for each child.
There will be different activities, which will also include receptive and expressive sign language. For example, one of our activities is rock climbing, and as a team building activity we will make sure to facilitate communication between people who sign and people who may not know sign language. The same is true for kayaking, canoeing, ziplining, and all the other different activities we will have. As the camp director, the staff and I will create a schedule of activities that will give campers the opportunity for additional activities such as storytelling, games, creative media such as making movies, and art. We will have the schedule ready to show you next year, before camp starts.