CBS 7 Special Report: Not Another "Fat Camp" 7/25/12
CBS 7 News Special Report
July 25, 2012
Wimberly, TX - Just outside San Marcos, is Wimberley, Texas, rolling green hills, and a summer camp for kids.
In this special report, CBS 7's Catherine Collins traveled to Wellspring camp, where kids from all over the country come to discover, not only smaller numbers on the scale, but a summer that changes their lives.
Lora Tilson, "In this environment, we're trying to create a healthy change… they come from a broad range of of lifestyles, and home life."
Camper Jamison J-Douglas says why he came to Wellspring, "honestly, I needed a change in my life, because getting overweight was starting to get out of hand, so I decided this is what I need to do."
Stefanie Hourani, an 18 year-old recent high school graduate says, "I've struggled with my weight for a while, since 7th grade."
Dalton Witt, a 14 year-old says, "I've always had problems, when I was a kid with getting made fun of, bullied."
Avery Railsback, a 15 year-old says why she came to camp this summer, "I was always an athlete...and I knew I was heavier, needed to lose more weight, so I told my mom I needed to make a change, its not a choice anymore."
Tilson says, I hate to hear people say 'it's a fat camp', typically a fat camp is, you're gonna come to camp, we're not gonna give you much food, send you home looking fabulous, but as soon as you start eating regular food again, its gonna all come back on."
It’s not just another fat camp, but a place to make learning healthy living fun.
Tilson says, “We really want it to be campy, have a good time, we're eating healthy food, learning how to be active and how to make it fun… teaching them how to read a food label, how to go grocery shopping, out to eat trips so they can order off a menu."
They not only count calories at meals, they count their progress - both physically and emotionally.
Tilson tells us, “We take a picture, we do a waist measurement, height & weight, and weekly, we'll continue to do weight… the behavioral coaches, when we check in with them, they'll check to see how their weigh-in went, the number, look at their self-monitoring journal, where they write all their food."
Seeing the changes - on the scale, and in their smiles.
Railsback says, “I've lost almost 20 pounds this summer… it makes me feel good, I have always wanted to be like, 'oh, look at her' and I'm almost to where I can at least feel like people are doing that… people wanna say, 'on you're coming to Wellspring to get healthy', a lot don't just to get healthy, people get bullied and that's hard to deal with.”
Witt says, “I've lost 42 pound this six weeks… I did this and now, I have more friends and I'm not so embarrased to go to the pool I used to never go because I was embarrassed to take off my shirt."
Douglas says, "I lost 45 pounds… I've always loved myself for who I am, but I feel so much better, it's an indescribable feeling."
Railsback tells us, “People that come to Wellspring should be crazy proud of themselves, because not only are you changing your physical appearance, but you're maturing because you have to deal with everything that comes with being heavier."
A changing body, and a changing soul, all from a summer camp, for those who've struggled for so long.
Catherine asks, “Do you feel like Wellspring has changed your life?”
To which Railsback replied, “100%, 100%, 100%, 100%."
Hourani says, “It's either my whole summer or my whole life"
After campers leave Wellspring, they're set up with a continued care program,. including an online food journal, and reinforcement from their behavioral coaches, to help maintain their healthy lifestyle at home.
Enrollment for the last session of Wellspring Texas has passed for this summer, but they tell me they are already enrolling campers for next summer.
For more information on Wellspring visit: http://www.wellspringcamps.com/texas/