Lions Club of Manning River Inc

District 201N1, New South Wales, Australia

Welcome to Camp Memories

On this page you can get information about Camp Memories conducted by the Manning River Lions Club:

Camp Memories is an annual camp-out for children with special needs and their families. Manning River Lions Club sets up the camp and provides tents and mattresses for all campers. Campers only need to bring their own linen and pillows. The annual camp caters for over 30 families with around 120 people participating in two full days of fun and games. We are very grateful to the huge number of volunteers and organisations that contribute each year to making the camp truly memorable.

History of Camp Memories

Camp Memories began as a result of a public meeting in Taree in 2001 to gauge whether there was sufficient interest and support to develop a voluntary public outreach event that would cater for children with disabilities aged birth to 16, and their families, including able-bodied siblings.

The first Camp Memories was organised and conducted in 2001 by Kevin & May Sharp on their property at Pampoolah. Kevin & May Sharp continued Camp Memories for 11 years. The Manning River Lions Club is pleased to be carrying on the wonderful work of the Sharps and their willing band of helpers by co-ordinating Camp Memories from 2012. Our thanks go to Rod & Jill Illidge for making available their Tinonee property for Camp Memories.

Camp Memories has earned itself a wonderful reputation for bringing together children with a range of physical and intellectual disabilities and their families - and willing carers - in a fun-filled atmosphere. Families remain together, with parents staying onsite at all times.


Previous Camp Memories activities have included

All activities are accompanied by experienced team leaders and fully supervised.









Camp costs are kept low due to sponsorship and donations from many businesses and individuals in the community. Families pay an amount of $20 per family per day they attend.


The following is a facebook post from a family who attended Camp Memories in 2015 :

Just wanted to share with you a post I put on my personal page, but was unable to tag you in.
I don't often document the adversities, the challenges and the associated tears of raising two gorgeous children who happen to also be on the ASD spectrum.
I do however, relish in the love, hugs kisses and joy that they bring to my life. I am constantly forced to see things from a different perspective and there is always the relearning that occurs in a myriad of situations for which ultimately I am grateful for. But does this sometimes come with heartache, with judgement from others, with misunderstanding and intolerance, absolutely!!
This weekend though I am grateful for the experiences that come with raising children with additional needs, as one such experience is our weekend at Camp Memories. Currently we as a family are blessed to be attending Camp Memories and to be reminded that there are so many kind, compassionate and loving people who devote their time to community and to those who struggle with mainstream situations in order to provide them with lasting memories in an environment without judgement, rigid social norms and inflexible attitudes.
This weekend I am reminded of the brighter side of human nature, the side that lifts people up and supports them. The side that gives their time to ensure others happiness and safety. The side that we desperately need to see more of in our communities and in society as a whole.
Thank you to all those who are involved in Camp Memories, to every person who makes it possible. The gift you give children and families is truly priceless. Most importantly though thank you for the personal reminder that we can be the change we want to see in our own communities, we can practice non judgement, compassion and kindness and it does not cost us a thing.
Thank you. We honestly can not thank you enough!!
Kate, Port Macquarie.


Camp Memories 2019 

Camp Memories 2019 will be held from 8th - 10th November 2019. Applications open in August and can be obtained from the Camp Memories Director - see contact details below. Please note that available places are limited and we encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible. Applications are subject to acceptance by the Lions of Club of Manning River and we will advise the outcome of your application as soon as possible after being received.

For more information 

Contact the Camp Memories Director, Peter Baker on (02) 6557 4463 or 0419 672 364 or email


Last updated: 22nd July 2019