OWENSBORO, KENTUCKY – Wendell Foster, a local non-profit agency serving people with disabilities, is welcoming Stephen and Elizabeth Wampler as guest speakers for March's Rooster Booster Breakfast. The breakfast, held each month by the Greater Owensboro Area Chamber of Commerce, will be sponsored by Wendell Foster on March 2nd. Wendell Foster typically sponsors the March breakfast in honor of National Disability Awareness Month.
The Wamplers are the founders of the Stephen J. Wampler Foundation, which supports the couple's "Camp Wamp" summer camp, providing life-changing outdoor educational experiences to physically disabled children. Stephen Wampler discovered his love for the outdoors as a child growing up with cerebral palsy. Between the ages of 9 and 18, he attended an outdoor wilderness camp each summer for children with disabilities. Having been forever changed by his own experiences at camp, he understood that these benefits were not unique to him, and dreamed of owning his own camp. In 2002, Stephen and Elizabeth created their foundation, and Camp Wamp was opened in 2004.
In 2010, Stephen became the first person with cerebral palsy to climb El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, a vertical slab of rock twice the height of the Empire State Building. The climb, which took six days and 20,000 pull-ups to complete, was featured in the award-winning documentary Wampler’s Ascent. Stephen and Elizabeth travel the country to speak on Stephen's momentous climb and seek to educate on disability awareness with positivity and humor. The couple has been featured on Good Morning America, Saturday Night Live, and The Ellen show, and also posts videos daily to their TikTok account (@the.wampler.way). The account, which has over 700,000 followers, 24.4 million likes, and 76.9 million views, gives viewers insight on the family's daily life and answers various questions regarding living with a disability.
"We are looking forward to our trip to the great state of Kentucky to talk to the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce about an optimistic, fresh look at disability," said Stephen and Elizabeth. "We appreciate our new friends at Wendell Foster for the generous invitation to this event, and are grateful for the time we will have with such an impressive group of people on the whole!"
Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, Candance Castlen Brake also shared her enthusiasm. "We are thrilled to welcome the Wamplers to Greater Owensboro. Our community is blessed to have a game changer like Wendell Foster as one of our leading non-profits. The Wamplers' story and their life experiences are so compelling. Being able to hear from them — and to connect our community to their work — will make us better people and better in the workplace."
The breakfast will be held on March 2nd at 7:30 am at the Owensboro Convention Center. The cost to attend is $15 for Chamber Members with reservations, $20 for Members with no reservations and $25 for non-members. Guests can register on the Chamber website (chamber.owensboro.com) or by calling the Chamber office at 270-926-1860 by noon on Wednesday, March 1st.
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