Campus Activities

The Orchard Place Campus School provides multiple activities for our students thanks to the help of volunteers. These programs give the children creative outlets and often help them realize new talents and possibilities.

Current Activities Include:

Creative Writing

Led by volunteer Ginny Hamilton, students meet weekly for a summer, fall or spring creative writing session. Ginny teaches them to think outside the box and helps them develop creative ways to compose stories or poetry. At the end of the session, each student selects works to be printed in a class book, and they attend a reception where they read their works to their peers on campus.

Painting Group

Students work with volunteer Tana Buchman weekly for the time that they live on Campus. Tana is a talented decorative artist, and teaches children decorative painting skills on surfaces like clay pots, baskets paper mache boxes and canvas.


Volunteer Jan Burns meets weekly with students to teach them knitting and sewing techniques. They choose what type of project to work on. Pillow cases and blankets are the most popular among our students. Recently the group worked to complete baby blankets to donate to a local hospital.

Running / Sports Groups

The running group helps students prepare for a 5K run. Basketball and weightlifting groups are also available for the students.

Girl Scouts

Volunteer Holly Grimes leads the Orchard Place Girl Scout troop. This has been a Campus activity for more than 10 years. Work is conducted to attain badges that teach life skills such as cooking and first aid. Recently the group worked to build a working robot with Legos. This project is encouraging STEM education for young girls.

Pet Therapy

Volunteers bring their own pet therapy certified dogs to campus weekly to work with children during the time they live on Campus. The program is very special to the kids. Many like to be involved since while on Campus they are living away from their own pets.


Mentors spend one hour a week with a child on campus. There are typically 15-20 children and mentors involved in the program. Mentors act as support for the children, providing friendship and guidance. Many also choose to work on life skills with the kids and teach skills like cooking or sewing.


Tutors, like mentors, spend one hour a week with an individual child. They help the child complete general homework assignments, as well as work on subjects that are difficult for many kids like math, science or reading and writing.

Board Game / Unit Volunteers

Several volunteers come weekly to play board games with the children on Campus. Patti Splavec has been visiting Orchard Place on Monday nights for years and plays bingo with the kids every week. They call her "The Bingo Lady."

Ice Cream Social

Volunteer Colleen Hjort plans a yearly ice cream social as a back to school celebration for the kids on campus. Last year's celebration included a DJ, face painters, and an ice cream sundae bar.

Holiday Parties

Each December, 9-10 companies and community groups hold holiday parties for the kids on campus, which include gifts, pizza and games.

Other Events

Volunteer groups often visit the Campus for one-time events like the PinkStew Entertainment ladies who visited and taught the kids how to make balloon animals.