In the 1940’s there were little or no services available for people with disabilities. Seeing this, a group of dedicated parents of children with Cerebral Palsy came together to form The Parents Association for Cerebral Palsy Children Inc. The Association purchased 30+ acres of land in Homer Township, Illinois in the hopes of building a summer camp which specifically served people with CP and other disabilities. In 1947 this dream came to light with the opening of Shady Oaks Camp for People with Disabilities. For the past 74 years, the dream of a few caring parents has survived through Shady Oaks. 

Shady Oaks Camp is a not for profit, 501c3 charity organization which is dedicated to the welfare of individuals with disabilities. It is a inter-racial, non-denominational, charitable organization chartered by the State of Illinois.

The first priority of the Shady Oaks Camp Board is the operation of Shady Oaks Camp. They have also been instrumental in securing two residential group homes, located on camp grounds, for individuals with disabilities. These homes are operated by Lutheran Social Services and are not connected with Shady Oaks Camp.

The operation of Shady Oaks ranges from $400,000 to $450,000 per year, with most of the expenses incurred during the eight week camp period. This cost does not include improvements and maintenance to the buildings, electrical and plumbing, and septic fields. The cost of these repairs varies from year to year.

Because Shady Oaks Camp is a not for profit 501c3, private organization, the money to run camp must be raised by the parents. Many fundraisers are conducted throughout the year to help bring in money. These fundraisers include raffles, dinner dance, tag days, Poker games and our annual SOB Motorcycle run. Beside fundraisers the parents receive cash donations from various supporting organizations.

To be a member of Shady Oaks Camp, dues of $50.00 must be paid between September 1st and December 31st. After December 31st, dues are increased to $100.00. Dues must be paid in order to hold an office, serve on the Board of Directors, or to obtain camp time for your child. The cost of sending a child to camp depends on the number of weeks requested and the amount of fundraising done.

We are now accepting applications for membership into Shady Oaks Camp for the summer. Attendance at SOC requires an active membership. For more info please see our Nutshell Camp Flyer, camp application and health history form. Deadline to reserve spot for summer is May 15th.