OUR WONDERFUL VIRGINIA TEAM

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ReBecca

Camp Director

I arrived here from the Aloha state, Hawaii, bodysurfing all the way. The idea was to wear me out so I could not be so hyperactive. It didn't work (ask the campers!). If you catch me standing still, be very quiet. I am asleep!

I've been here a few years tormenting and testing our campers with my silliness. We have had many a good time together trying to be as messy in our camp events as possible, much to Ms. Van Horn's chagrin! This next year you'd all better look out! Parents, know that we are going to possibly be more colorful than last year as I learned my lesson on how many bottles of paint to buy!!!

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Rebecca

Counselor

Hello, hello! My name is Rebecca. I have experienced Signs of Fun as a camper and this will be my fifth year as a counselor! I am looking forward to this summer!

Anyway, my two favorite parts about going to Signs of Fun camp are meeting new friends and ASL! Thanks to Signs of Fun Camp, I have met some of my best friends! And ASL, well, it's fun to learn and makes communication with others so much easier! I can't wait to meet all of you!

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Jessie

Counselor

Hello! My name is Jessie, I go to the Maryland School for the Blind in Baltimore, MD. I love my school, And my favorite subjects are math and reading. I am on the cheerleading, track, and wrestling teams at school and I love it!

My other favorite thing is Signs of Fun Camp. I love coming to Signs of Fun and I wouldn’t miss it. At camp, I like to fish and go swimming. I also like to make new friends and see old friends. Can’t wait to see everyone again this year!

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MaryRose

Parent Instructor

Hi! My name is MaryRose Gonzalez. I was born Deaf and raised in a hearing family. This means I have a dual perspective. I can see where the parents struggle and where our campers crave role models within the deaf community. For these reasons, I am a Deaf mentor. I love showing families that acquiring language, though while a bit difficult, it can still be fun. There are so many cultural experiences I can help families obtain via my tutelage.

I am also a strong advocate for our deaf community. I am the President of the Virginia Association of the Deaf, am an Independent Living Skills instructor, and a family tutor/mentor for those just learning to navigate the deaf community.  I look forward to seeing your teens sign up to be a part of the Virginia Association of the Deaf when they turn 18.

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Abbie

Counselor - Interpreter

Hello! My name is Abbie, I’m a local interpreter and I’m thrilled to be volunteering with Signs of Fun again this Summer! My super power is being super silly!

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Lauren

Counselor

Hi there! My name is Lauren. I'm a student at Liberty University and am currently declared as an ASLI Major. I am so excited to be a counselor yet again his year, especially since SOF Camp is a wonderful opportunity for me to gain more experience within the Deaf/Hoh community. Can't wait to meet you all and to have a blast this summer!

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Noberto

Counselor

Hello, my name is Noberto, but I also go by Bert. This is my second year at Signs of Fun Camp, and I’m so glad to be able to volunteer as a counselor again! I am an ASL-English Interpreting student excited to work in K-12 and community settings. I look forward to providing a FUN environment for children to enjoy themselves in the company of others who sign! My favorite part of camp last year was watching all of the little ones laugh and enjoy their time at camp! Get ready for another summer full of laughs and awesome memories!

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Ana

Assistant Camp Director

I'm back! Growing up in Signs of Fun camp was a wonderful experience. Now I'm back and hoping to lead us into thinking like the Super Heroes we truly are!

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Jordan

Counselor - Art

I’m Jordan from Bristow VA, and I was born hard of hearing due to Goldenhar Syndrome. I didn’t learn sign language until high school, but now I use it daily to communicate! I currently attend Radford University and major in Art Education and minor in American Sign Language. Growing up I went to camp, but always with hearing people only, so it was pretty difficult to enjoy, but I’ve only been with Signs of Fun for a short time, and greatly enjoy working with the kids and helping them make art- with my hearing aids off!

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Bradley

Counselor

Hi my name is Bradley (B3). I've been a staff member for Acorn Acting Camp in MI for two years before moving to VA and becoming a counselor at Signs of Fun Camp! I can't tell you my favorite part because I just loved it all! Ziplining is like flying, similar to Superman! I love helping the children discover the outdoors.  Gym was crazy with all of the games our gym leaders created. And swimming, don't get me started on swimming. I am the schedule keeper. I make certain we are NEVER late to swimming!

 

I cannot wait to meet you. You can't miss me. I think I'm the tallest counselor at SoF, so I'm easy to spot! If I had to pick a favorite superhero, it might be Aqua Man because I LOVE to swim! What about you?

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Shandalyn

Counselor

Hi, my name is Shandalyn. I am hard of hearing. My first time being a camp counselor has taught me what unconditional love truly means. I can be tired but still excited to volunteer for the kids who expect me to keep them entertained all day. They look so happy that even their eyes are smiling.

 

I am super excited to be back and reconnect with the children and staff here. Love you all and I will see you soon!

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Bethanie

Photographer

"Hello! My name is Bethanie, I'm an ASL interpreter and also a TAP Manager for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services Center. I enjoy photography, crafts, fishing, ziplining, swimming (basically all things outdoors). I'm looking forward to helping everybody have a super fun time! This is my first year volunteering at SoF and I'm so excited to capture all the fun we'll have this summer!"

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Tammy

Counselor - ASL Teacher for Campers

 I can make the happen to make a FUN from my eyes. In the moment, I see what and create the FUN. Now, you see that we will not be bored because I am here! 

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Heather

Assistant Camp Director

My name is Heather! I started learning ASL in undergrad at the University of Arizona (go wildcats!) where I graduated from their educational interpreting program. I continued my studies in the graduate college at Gallaudet University (go bison!). Now, I'm a school psychologist in central Maryland. When I'm not at work you can probably find me out and about with my fiancé and dog.

I started volunteering with Signs of Fun during summer 2018, where I found a home for one week every summer! I can't wait to see all the children and counselors every summer and have fun!

As lead counselor I not only provide guidance to our wonderful team of camp counselors, I also help with scheduling the day, drive the golf cart, and help with interpreting in a pinch.

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Lyndsay

Counselor-Gym

Bio coming soon!

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Grace

Counselor - social media

Hello and welcome, all superheroes! I’m Grace, and I can’t wait to meet everyone. I’m an interpreting major at The University of Tennessee and I live in the Richmond area. This will be my first year at Signs of Fun Camp and I’m excited for a fun-filled week with the best superheroes around!  

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Arlene

Camp Founder

Board Member

Hola! My name is (Janet) Arlene Van Horn. I have a BS in Special Education and a Masters of Education in Early Childhood Special Education, as well as a teacher for students that are Deaf or Hard of Hearing. I taught in the public school system in both New Jersey and Virginia for over 35 years. I was also an adjunct professor at local community colleges.

 

I started the Signs of fun Camp in 1995 so that my preschool students would have access to communication (ASL) in the summer and have a camp experience. The camp not only benefits the students but their parents as well. The parents have the opportunity to share and get support from each other.

After retirement, I moved to NJ to care for my elderly parents. I continue to be active and very supportive of the Signs of Fun Camp.

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Lori

Volunteer - ASL Teacher for Campers

Shazam!! My name is Lori. Covid has tried to take us down, but we are back - in person- and stronger than ever! I am so excited to see everyone in person this year. Signs of Fun Camp has been a part of my summers for more than 2 decades. 
 

I have been teaching for 39 years (if that doesn't make me a superhero, I don't know what does!). Even with that said, I continue to educate students and parents whenever possible. Signs of Fun camp allows me to watch the super little heroes interacting with their peers in a relaxing and enjoyable setting (away from the academic constraints of testing and IEPs).

There is nothing better on earth than witnessing the spontaneous communication and true joy that I see on the faces of all of those that attend. Looking forward to seeing all of your smiles soon!!

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Nalani

Web Design Expert

Aloha! My name is Nalani. I was born in Hawaii and raised in Virginia, and I've been signing since I was about 8.  I graduated from Radford University in May 2021 with a major in Computer Science and a minor in ASL. I currently work as a software developer and I enjoy making websites in my free time (like this one!).