Colorado Discover Ability (CDA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to increase the independence, self-confidence, self-worth and education of people with disabilities through outdoor recreation.
Colorado Discover Ability, (CDA), was incorporated in 1980 as the Powderhorn Handicapped Ski Program, Ltd., to provide educational and therapeutic outdoor experiences to the disabled population in western Colorado, through alpine skiing. Prior to CDA, disabled individuals in the Grand Valley had no local options for proper training and guidance in adaptive outdoor recreation. In 1987 we changed our name to reflect our vision to provide recreational opportunities in other sports. We continue to be responsible for the delivery of all adaptive skiing and snowboard instruction at Powderhorn Mountain Resort.
In 2001 we began offering year-round recreational programs. During the spring, summer and fall, our focus shifts to adaptive cycling, water-based recreation, such as river rafting, and related camping activities. We offer summer Day Camps for children and young adults. With the collaboration of St. Mary's Hospital and Family Health West staff, we offer a multi-day Camp Freedom for children age 6-12 with severe disabiliites.
CDA programs encourage clients to participate as independently as possible, regardless of their disability, by using various outdoor recreational experiences. The client is not adapted to the sport, but rather the sport is adapted to the client. Utilizing an array of specialized, adaptive equipment and individualized instruction, all of the sports are tailored to each client's disability.
"When I think of Codi's experiences with CDA, I think of firsts. Codi spent her first night away from home at Camp Freedom in 2015. At camp she had her first boat ride and first ride on a bus with her friends. This winter, Codi skied using the bi-ski for the first time. She skied from the top of Powderhorn five times! And used the new high speed quad lift, The Flat Top Flyer, for the first time!
Codi has Cerebral palsy and epilepsy. She is non verbal and uses a wheelchair. Because of the caring, well trained, dedicated staff and volunteers, Codi is able to take on these first experiences, without her disabilities slowing her down. As parents we are confident in CDA to take care of Codi in a safe and fun environment! Thank you CDA for all you do for our community! I can't wait to see what firsts she'll have this summer!" - Jen Mendenhall
Our daughter's heart blossomed to a new level at Camp Freedom! She continues to share new details and stories with us of all the activities & adventures she had and expresses a level of excitement unparalleled to anything we've seen before. It is easy for us to see that she felt 'connected' and 'included' at Camp Freedom and we are confident that Camp Freedom has catalyzed an immeasurably positive impact that has helped boost our daughter's self-confidence and sense of self-worth. Our family is grateful for the dedication and contribution from every individual who helps make Camp Freedom possible. Thank you :D