"Aphasia people, they-I trust them": The concept of neighborhood at an aphasia camp -Contributions of the built environment, natural environment, and social environment
The current study focuses on the perceptions of people with aphasia at a weekend aphasia camp retreat and examines aspects of the environment that are important to campers, and how the environment may facilitate or hinder participation in camp. Five returning campers with mild-moderate aphasia completed a walking interview, in which they guided interviewers to spots of meaning and discomfort around camp. Each walking interview consisted of two self-selected spots of meaning and one spot that the camper historically avoided. Campers additionally completed a social cohesion scale regarding the home and camp environments. Using qualitative content analysis, categories and themes were inductively developed based on a priori application of the social, built, and natural components of the environment at home and camp. Interviews revealed components of the built, natural and social environments at camp, and an interaction of the three components that provided a sense of community, comfort and safety at aphasia camp. On a social cohesion questionnaire, no significant differences between the home and the camp environment were identified. Implications for aphasia camp refinements, as well as for provision of environments that support individuals with aphasia are discussed.