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VACC Camp: An Amazing Camp for Special Needs Children in Miami (In Pictures)

V.A.C.C. Camp (Ventilation Assisted Children's Center Camp) is a unique free week-long overnight camp for ventilation assisted children (children needing a tracheostomy ventilator, C-PAP, BiPAP, or oxygen to support breathing) hosted each spring in Miami by Nicklaus Children's Hospital. Overnight campers and their families come from throughout the United States and internationally to socialize with peers and enjoy activities not readily accessible to technology dependent children. South Florida families and youngsters from local residential care facilities join in as day campers.

Founded by pediatric pulmonology doctor Moises Simpser, VACC Camp celebrated its 30th anniversary in 2016 (I've been filming the past two years for an upcoming documentary film I'm working on). My first year of filming at the camp was in 2011 and after that memorable week, I was hooked. Over the years, I've created short videos of the camp (scroll to the end of the photographs to watch them) and have taken many photographs of the truly remarkable campers and young volunteers that give up their Spring Break in South Florida to serve in the camp. It's been a labor of love and this year was no different.

So enjoy the images (the first in a series of photography posts I'll be sharing on the camp) and visit www.vacccamp.com to learn more (or to support) this truly magical camp. You can like them on Facebook HERE (thanks, in advance!)

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

First-time campers are usually overwhelmed by the high-energy greeting they receive upon arrival to camp...

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

Day one of camp is all about campers arriving...

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

Day two features an annual trip to Shake-A-Leg and setting sail on beautiful Biscayne Bay...

VACC CAMP

Shake-A-Leg founder Harry Horgan and VACC Camp Founder Dr. Moises Simpser (and Wolfie in the middle)

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

Day three features a visit by long-time camp supporter Mike McCarthy of McCarthy's Wildlife Sanctuary in West Palm Beach (more photos forthcoming)

NIKKI BEACH

NIKKI BEACH

NIKKI BEACH

Day four is all about Nikki Beach and the annual camper relay race...

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

Day five is one of the most popular - "Pool Day" (more photographs forthcoming)

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

The last night of VACC Camp is all about partying - this year featured a "Mexican Fiesta" theme (more photographs forthcoming)

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

VACC CAMP

The emotional last day of VACC Camp is about saying "see you next year". Stay tuned for additional VACC Camp photography posts in the coming week...

VACC CAMP

Here are a few short videos I've produced of the camp over the years...

Miami Children's Hospital: VACC Camp 2012 from DanPerezFilms on Vimeo.

V.A.C.C. Camp: A Day at the Beach from DanPerezFilms on Vimeo.

VACC Camp: A Day at Shake-A-Leg Miami from DanPerezFilms on Vimeo.

VACC CAMP

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