History


“It is so great to see the ministry that started here many many years ago is continuing not just to bless the campers but to really bless the young people and even the adults that serve and are a part of this ministry. Just know God is still the guiding force at Barnabas and it is an amazing place that it always has been. It is fun and it will change your life forever. “
- Cyndy Teas (Camp Barnabas Co-Founder)

How We Started

As a child, Lauren Hauschild attended Kanakuk Kamps for several summers. She was diagnosed with cancer in 1992, and after going through chemotherapy and the loss of her leg, she still wanted to attend camp. Unfortunately, she often found herself in the camp’s medical center, unable to truly enjoy her summer.  

When asked what her ideal camp experience would be, Lauren described a place where different was normal. Lauren said, “Everyone would be in a wheelchair or on crutches. No one would care that your hair was missing from chemo. It would be easy for anyone to do all of the activities of camp. Cancer wouldn’t isolate you–it would unite you–and when you came there, you would be loved.”  

From there, an idea was born. In 1994, Camp Barnabas was established and operated out of Kanakuk Kamps. Then, in 1996, founders Paul and Cyndy Teas purchased Soaring Hawk Camp (Purdy, Missouri) and opened Camp Barnabas at Teas Trail. In 2014, Camp Barnabas added a second location in Shell Knob, MO. Both locations now serve approximately 1,800 campers and 2,400 missionaries each summer. The organization has grown, but our goal remains the same — provide life changing experiences.

Barnabas Timeline

1994 – Camp Barnabas is established
1996 – Founders Paul and Cyndy Teas purchase Camp Soaring Hawk (Purdy, Missouri) and open Camp Barnabas
1998 – First medical center is built
2000 – New dining hall is built
2002 – 250,000 gallon zero-entry pool is built
2005 – Featured on ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
2005 – Fully accessible ropes course built
2008 – 21 accessible cabins built for both boys and girls
2010 – Country music singer Joe Nichols selects Barnabas for his fundraising charity on “Are you Smarter than a 5th Grader?”
2011 – Barnabas Prep is established
2011 – $1.6M medical building is built
2014 – Barnabas purchases K-Extreme from Kanakuk Kamps in Shell Knob, MO and becomes Camp Barnabas at Table Rock Lake
2014 – Branson property for Barnabas Prep is purchased thanks to Gary and Norma Smalley
2015 – Kate Gosselin selects Barnabas for her fundraising charity on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice
2016 – Sibling tree houses built at Camp Barnabas at Teas Trail
2017 – Jordan Spieth provides 100 camper scholarships
2017 – Cole & Heidi Hamels’ donate 32,000 square foot home on Table Rock Lake