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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Summer Camps and Programs for Children and Young Adults with Autism

It's January, schools closed early because of an incoming snowstorm, so naturally this is the perfect time to think about...summer plans! It may seem early, but many summer camps and programs for children and young adults with autism are already accepting applications. In the case of the Autism Society of North Carolina's amazing Camp Royall, the lottery for summer spots closes on February 24th, so if you wait, it will be too late. Luckily, the Autism Society of North Carolina Orange Chatham (ASNCOC) recently held their annual Summer Options Fair. Don't worry if you missed it, here is all of the information from the event:

2016 Update: This information was accurate when published in 2014; please contact camps directly for their most current programs and prices. 

ASNC Orange/Chatham County Chapter - Summer Options Fair 2014

Below are the programs which (we’ve heard) do a good job at including children & youth with developmental disabilities or provide specialized camps for them. Since each child is different, please be sure to contact them and ask lots of questions (please see the handout at the end of your packet) to be sure it would be a good fit for your child. ASNCOC cannot directly vouch for any information contained here, nor accept liability for any adverse events that may arise from your/your child's participation in any of these programs. We share this information strictly as a public service, not as an endorsement.

Daytime Programs:

A Place to Grow
Camps are broken into different age groups, 4-11? (age limits can be flexible).
Generally special needs only. Sibling/friend slots may be available.
Children need to be verbal and able to function in a small group setting of 4-5 kids with 2-3 adults. Clinic director will assess child prior to registration.
Activities will be catered to the needs of the group but in general the camps will include gym time (obstacle courses, movement stations, movement games), outdoor playground time, social thinking activities, sensory play, games, cooking/snack time and crafts! Though having fun and making friends is a big goal, the camps will be therapeutic in nature.
There is no minimum or maximum number of weeks children can attend.
The camps will run from 9-12 Monday - Thursday (4 days) weeks and dates are yet to be determined. Check the A Place to Grow Website for updates. www.aplacetogrowtherapy.com
Cost per session: $450, Financial Aid Available: There is no financial aid available.
Date registration opens: February 15, 2013

Arc of Orange County - Summer Work & Wellness Program
Ages: 15-22 (still enrolled in school) Staff Ratio: 1:1
Funding: Contact us immediately if not on the Innovations Waiver. Participants must have a state defined diagnosis of a Developmental Disability.
Program Summary: Students participate in a community based vocational & social settings. Monday – Thursday: Vocational training in the morning. Swimming, music therapy, nature walks, learning the public transit and many other activities for the afternoon. Friday: We have Fun Friday to take a break from work to do exciting things like a cookout at Jordan Lake, Asheboro Zoo, Wet N’ Wild, and more.
Dates of sessions: One week sessions from June 16th - August 15th
7 week commitment out of the 9 weeks is requested but negotiable.
Cost: $160 a week (Includes all activity costs; meals not included) for those who have full funding through the Innovations Waiver, IPRS or B3

Date registration opens: TBA (Will take contact information and contact those who signed up when registration opens.)
Financial Aid Available: Yes

Camp GRACE at the A.E. Finley YMCA
Ages 5-15 (exceptions made)
Staff Ratio 1:3 Social Skills and 1:2 Building Blocks
Special Needs (YMCA does provide inclusion with our traditional summer day camp)
Camp GRACE serves many children on the Autism Spectrum, and also serves a variety of special needs.
Camp GRACE is divided into Social Skills & Building Blocks. Social Skills serves higher functioning children who are more independent, while Building Blocks serves children who typically need more assistance and/or are non-verbal or have not mastered self-help skills. A child would not be a fit for both sessions.
Campers will participate in a variety of activities including dodgeball, tag games, arts and crafts, scooters, swimming, scavenger hunts, sensory activities, and much more.
Sessions are 2 weeks long and cannot be split. Campers can attend up to 4 weeks at either branch (Kraft or Finley), or up to 8 weeks if they go between both branches.
Dates of sessions: Every two weeks beginning June 23-August 15 2014
Cost per person : (costs not yet finalized – more information by March)
Date registration opens: March 18
Financial Aid Available: Yes, by application

Camp Shelanu

Camp Shelanu
Ages/Grades served: Rising k-5th (all weeks) and rising 6th-8th (3 weeks) Inclusive Staff Ratio 1:9, with additional Inclusion staff.
Traditional Camp: Swimming, arts, sports, games, music, nature, cooking, field trips. Specialty camps: Art, Sports, Basketball, Circus, Claymation, Science, Hula Hooping, or Lego Engineering
Dates of sessions: June 16-Aug 22, no min or max weeks to attend
Cost per session: $235 for Traditional Camp, $265-$315 for Specialty camps.
JCC Member discount available.
Date registration opens: Jan. 31
Financial Aid Available: Yes, need-based financial aid

Swimming at Chapel Hill Parks & Rec

Chapel Hill Parks & Recreation
Camp Registration opens: Chapel Hill residents: February 4, Orange County residents: February 11, Non-residents: February 18 (These dates apply to all camps below.)
Financial Aid Available: For residents who meet the income requirements, EXCEPT PlayWell TEKnologies.

Full Day Camps for Rising 1 -5 grade
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive
Activities include: outside hikes, arts & crafts, competitions, board games, swimming, special guests, field trips, and community projects. Early drop-off 7:30-9:00 am & after camp care 4:00-6:00 pm) Structured activities 9:00 am- 4:00pm.
Min or Max number of weeks can attend: Four, two week sessions: June 23 – Aug.15
Sessions A,C & D $168 Residents of Chapel Hill & Orange County $202 non-residents
Session B $153 residents of Chapel Hill & Orange County $184 non-residents (no camp 7/4)

Full Day Camps for Rising 6-9 grade
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive
The structured recreational curriculum includes arts and crafts, swimming, movies, field trips, games, character education, book club, cooking, sewing, dancing, lots of outdoor activities (when weather permits) and much more. Academic support is provided for those attending summer school. Appropriate behavior is expected of all participants and accepting differences is instilled from day one.
Min or Max number of weeks can attend: 1 week sessions
Dates of sessions: June 23 – August 8
Sessions A, B, D, E, F, G & H $70 Residents of Chapel Hill & Orange County $84 Non-residents. Session C $56 Residents of Chapel Hill & Orange County $70 Non-residents (no camp July 4)
Min or Max number of weeks can attend: Minimum 2 weeks, no max

Play-Well TEKnologies: Summer Camps Ages 5-12
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive
Explore mechanisms and structural design through the use of LEGO®. Campers build motorized machines, catapults, pyramids, demolition derby cars, truss and suspension bridges, buildings and much more.
Dates of sessions: Aug. 18 - 22
Financial Aid Available: None through Parks & Recreation
Community Clay Studio Art Camp Chapel Hill NC
Ages 6-9: 9 am - Noon Ages 9-13: 1-4 pm
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive
Half-day camp offers a fun and immersive experience with clay, from hand building to glazing and art projects in other media while the clay is firing. 9-13 year olds will also use the potter’s wheel.
Min or Max number of weeks can attend: minimum 2 weeks, no maximum
Dates of Sessions: June 16 - August 22

Other camps/clinics include: youth basketball clinic, youth flag football clinic, youth volleyball clinic, Ultimate Frisbee clinic. (Outdoors) Jump Start Sports Camp, STEM Enrichment Programs. See brochure for more info or online at www.townofchapelhill.org/register.

Inclusion Support may be available for your child through Chapel Hill Parks & Recreation. Contact Marian Kaslovsky, who will conduct a screening with you and with your child’s school to determine whether inclusion in a particular Parks & Recreation program would be a successful experience for your child.919 968-2813 or mkaslovsky@townofchapelhill.org. Please contact me as soon as possible as careful inclusion planning can be a lengthy process.

Archery at the YMCA's Camp Clearwater

Chapel Hill – Carrboro YMCA Summer Camps
www.chcymca.org Locations vary, see below
Registration: For members Feb. 3rd For program participants (non-members) Feb. 17th
Financial assistance is available for all programs. Applications available in person, online or by contacting Maureen Laquay (mlaquay@chcymca.org).
All camps require a one-time $40 registration fee & a $25 deposit per week of camp (applies to balance).

First Camp:
Location – YMCA @ Meadowmont (301 Old Barn Lane, Chapel Hill)
Ages: 3 ½ - rising kindergartners Staff Ratio- 1:8 Min or Max number of sessions: No max
Dates of sessions: One week sessions: June 16 – August 15 (no camp week of June 30 – July 4)
Cost per session: Members $100 Program Participants $125
Camp Hours- 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

Kinder Camp:
Location- Chapel Hill – Carrboro Y (980 MLK Jr., Blvd Chapel Hill)
Ages- Rising kindergartners Staff Ratio- 1:12
Min or Max number of sessions- No (all sessions are 1 week)
Dates of sessions: June 16 – August 15 (no camp July 4)
Cost per session- Members-$160, 6/30 – 7/3, $128
Program Participant $200, 6/30 – 7/3 $160
Camp Hours- 7:30 am - 6:00 pm
YMCA, Continued:

Meadowmont Y Day Camp:
Location – YMCA @ Meadowmont (301 Old Barn Lane, Chapel Hill)
Ages- Rising 1st – Rising 6th grade
Staff Ratio- 1:12
Min or Max number of sessions- No (all sessions are 1 week)
Dates of sessions: One-week sessions from June16 - August 15 (no camp on July 4
Cost per session: Members-$160/week. Week of June 30 – July 3, $128
Program Participant $200/week. Week of June 30 – July 3, $160
Camp Hours- 7:30 am - 6:00 pm

Chapel Hill – Carrboro Y Day Camp:
Location - Chapel Hill – Carrboro Y (980 MLK Jr. Blvd Chapel Hill)
Ages – Rising 1st – rising 8th grade Staff Ratio- 1:12
Min or Max number of sessions – No (all sessions are 1 week)
Dates of sessions: One-week sessions from June 16 – August 15 (no camp July 4)
Cost per session: Members-$160 Session 3 $128
Program Participant $200 Session 3 $160
Camp Hours- 7:30am-6:00pm

Camp Clearwater:
Location – Camp Clearwater (1720 Clearwater Lake Road, Chapel Hill)
Ages: Rising 1st – rising 8th grade
Staff Ratio- 1:12
Min/Max number of sessions – No max., all sessions 2 weeks with exception of August 11 - 15.
Dates of sessions: 2-week sessions: June 16 - August 8, 1-week session: August 11-15
Cost per session:
All sessions except 6/30 – 7/11 and 8/11 - 15:
Members $330, Program Participants- $410
Session from 6/30 – 7/11 (no camp 7/4):
Members $297, Program Participants $369
One week session (August 11-15)
Members: $165, Program Participants: $205
Camp Hours- 7:30 am - 6:00 pm

Efland Cheeks Day Camp:
Location: Efland Cheeks Community Center
Ages: Rising 1 – rising 8th grade
Staff Ratio: 1:12
Min or Max number of sessions: No min or max
Dates of sessions: One week sessions, June 23 – August 15 (no camp week of June 30 – July 4)
Cost per session: Both Members and Program Participants $125
Camp Hours: 7:30 am - 5:30 pm

EDGE Teen Camp:
Location: Chapel Hill – Carrboro Y (980 MLK Jr. Blvd, Chapel Hill)
Ages: Rising 8th – 15 year olds
Staff Ratio: 1:12
Min or Max number of sessions No min or max (all sessions 2 weeks, except August 11-15)
Cost per session:
Two week sessions (except June 30 – July 11): Members $350, Program Participants- $425
Session June 30 - July 11 (no camp July 4): Members $315 Program Participants $382
1 week-session, August 11-15: Members $170, Program Participants- $210
Camp Hours: 7:30 am - 6:00 pm

Emerge-A Child's Place
Birth-18 for therapy intensives; preschool through elementary for groups/mini-camps
Summer programs are geared to children who need skill building in a specific area.
Children need to be screened at Emerge (no charge) to determine placement.
Wide range of therapeutic activities depending on program: addresses social skills, handwriting, self-regulation, reducing anxiety, and expanding eating repertoire.
Activities may include games, sensory gym play, crafts, writing, pretend play and/or food exploration.
Children can register for multiple programs (no maximum)
Preschool Power: Three 3-week sessions beginning June 10th (meets 3 days a week)
All other programs begin the week of June 16th, meeting once per week for 8 weeks.
Cost per session: 
Depends on program: $750-$950 (eligible for insurance reimbursement)
Date registration opens: 
Feb 1 and you can register in person, by mail, or by fax
Financial Aid Available: Not through Emerge. Some families have received assistance through First in Families. In addition, receipts from some programs can be submitted to health insurance companies for reimbursement for Occupational Therapy.

Ages served: ages of 10 -34 with Asperger’s Syndrome or High Functioning
iASPIRE of NC offers social, educational, and critical life skill programs specifically designed to connect individuals to their own personal strengths, to their families, the people that love and work with them, and the community in which they live and work. Participants are screened/interviewed to ensure that they are a good fit and can benefit from the program.

Mariposa School’s Social Butterflies
http://www.mariposaschool.org Ph: 919-461-0600 Cary, NC
Ages 3-16 years old, Staff Ratio: 1:3 or 1:4 ratio
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive
Social Butterflies emphasizes teaching play, communication, and social skills to children with Autism & other related disabilities. Each child has individualized goals & progress is tracked and reported to parents. Children must have basic language/communication skills & behavior that is manageable in a group setting with ABA/VB instruction. All activities are centered on fun themes in an environment that supports language & learning development. Activities include group games, water play, cooking, music, and art!
Number of weeks can attend: 3 or 6 weeks
Dates of sessions: July–August 2014
Cost per session: Full-day ($550/wk) or Half day options ($325/wk)
Date registration opens: February 2014
Financial Aid Available: Limited; some insurance plans may cover ABA services

NC Therapeutic Riding Center

North Carolina Therapeutic Riding Center
Ages 5-12 Staff Ratio 1:1
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive (Pre-assessment with OT/PT.) Equestrian camp which includes crafts and farm activities.
Dates of sessions: TBA - Weeklong camps will be offered in June, July and August
Cost per session: $375 Financial Aid Available: Yes, up to 50% of tuition
Date registration opens: February 1st, 2014

Making friends at Reality Ministries

Real Friends at Reality Ministries
Many Real Friends events include an equal number of friends with and without I/DD. Also typically included are food, singing, conversation, laughter, spiritual nurture and friendship. Some activities are free of charge, while others have a fee. Scholarships are available to any who need assistance; all who would like to participate are welcome!

Week-long Summer Day Camp:
Filled with fun activities and outings for ages 14 and up
Dates of sessions: August 4 – 8
Hours: 9:30 am - 3:30 pm, Monday – Thursday; and 1:30 - 7:30 pm, Friday.
Cost: $175 Financial Aid Available.
Date registration opens: TBA (call for more info)

Activities Through the School Year:
Teen/Young Adult Group: Ages 14 - 24
Adult Group: Ages 25 and older
Inclusive or Special Needs only: Inclusive
Weekly evening gatherings, Tuesdays, 6:30-8:00
Daytime activities (10:30-1:00 Monday & Wednesdays, 10:30-3:30 Thursday OR Friday)
A variety of enrichment opportunities.

Solomon Kobes, LCSW
www.solomonLCSW.com Chapel Hill, NC
Ages served: K through college
Summer and school year social skills therapy groups for autism, ADHD, and related. Individual therapy and parenting help for other diagnoses as well. Groups feature games and direct instruction to facilitate social interaction.
Dates of summer sessions: 8 meetings beginning the week of June 23 - week of August 20
Cost per session: $55
Financial Aid Available: Medicaid accepted. Families with private insurance may submit on their own.

Overnight Experiences:

Alliance of Disability Advocates: North Carolina Youth Leadership
Ages 15-28 Only Youth with Disabilities
Staff Ratio: 2:5 staff, some of which is support staff for the entire event who help fill in where necessary.
Youth Leadership Forum supports and teaches transition skills. Focus on transitioning high school/college to work, moving from home, independent living skills, finding one’s voice, identifying one’s strengths and leadership style. Staying on a college campus on their own allows them to experience independence in a new way .
Min or Max number of weeks can attend: 1 Week ONLY
Dates of sessions: July 14-18, 2014
Cost per session: FREE!
Date registration opens: NOW until March 28, 2014

Talent show at Camp Lakey Gap

Camp Lakey Gap of Christmount
Camp Lakey Gap, a camp for people with autism, is located in Black Mountain, North Carolina. Our program design is based on a successful philosophy for supporting people with autism that has been in use in a summer camp community since the early 70's.
During a week at Camp Lakey Gap with, people with autism develop strong social skills and self-esteem by experiencing success with peers, being empowered to take leadership roles, successfully trying new things, and being supported in a positive and loving environment.
Population Served: A diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder or related communication disorder.
Ages: 4 through Adult (in separate sessions)
Staff Ratio: 1:1 and 1:2 staff support
Dates of sessions: 1 week sessions, June 8 – August 1
Cost per session: $1725 per week, and $1525 for the second child in the same family
Financial Aid Available: scholarship and payment plan available
Date registration opens: Now until April 1st

Camp Royall Program Director Sara Gage and friend

Camp Royall – Autism Society of NC
www.camproyall.org Pittsboro, NC
Ages: 4 – adults
Staff Ratio: 1:1 is provided for most, some groups of 2 or 3 campers to 1 counselor
Specifically serving those on the autism spectrum. Only residents of NC.
Short description of activities: Typical outdoor camp activities just done in a very structured and specialized way – including Arts and crafts, boating, hiking, hay riding, swimming (lots of it), zap lines, horseback riding, campfires and more.
Min or Max number of weeks: Only one week per camper
Dates of sessions: June 1 - August 8, 2014 (10 individual 1-week sessions grouped by age)
Cost per session: $1,700
Date registration opens: January 13th-February 24th. You must register during this time to get placed in a spot at camp.
Financial Aid Available: Yes, please inquire if you need assistance with the fee, scholarships are based partially on income, family situation is also taken into account. They also offer payment plans over 6 months, through September.

(New Jersey YMCA) Round Lake Camp
http://roundlakecamp.org, Milford, PA
Ages:7 – 18 Staff to camper ratio:1:4
At Round Lake Camp we believe that every camper deserves friends, fun and laughter in an accepting environment. Our program of therapeutic recreation is designed so that every activity – recreational, social and educational is planned to meet the capabilities of each child. There are structures in place so that each camper receives guidance in the widest possible variety of recreational skills and social opportunities available plus there is flexibility allowing for individual interests, needs, supportive services and social skills training.
Educational/Therapeutic Opportunities: Offered for campers beyond traditional camp activities include Occupational/Speech Therapy, Adaptive Physical Education, Social Skills Training and Mental Health counseling on-site.
Sessions: Full Session: June 26 – August 14 $10475
1st Session: June 26 – July 22 $7045
2nd Session: July 22 – August 14$5625
10 Days only: June 26 – July 6 $3295

Other Resources:

Central Carolina First In Families
Central Carolina First In Families is a nonprofit organization serving individuals with developmental disabilities or traumatic brain injury in Orange, Person and Chatham Counties. Assistance is available for families for a variety of requests including respite, summer camp, therapy, household goods and furniture. Applicants must live in Orange, Person or Chatham counties to qualify (other counties are served through other FIF programs), meet income requirements, and the request must benefit the person with the disability.
For more information on how to apply contact Peter Mora, Resource Consultant at 919-251-8368 or centralcarolinafif@fifnc.org. You can learn more about volunteering with FIF, our other programs and our work statewide at www.fifnc.org.

GCF Family Support Services
GCF Family Support Services™ (GCF-FSS™) is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting, educating, and informing families of children with special needs. GCF-FSS™ believes that the greatest asset a child can have is a strong family. We provide parent mentoring, peer support groups and education to families of children with developmental and intellectual disabilities, chronic illness, other special needs or those who are born prematurely. For more information about this program contact Beth Hutson, Program Coordinator at 919-667-1067 or bhutson@gcffamilysupportservices.org.
ACT Today! Grant Program http://www.act-today.org/act-today-grant-program.php

If your child attends Chapel Hill Carrboro City Schools, ask your Family Specialist about the SKJAJA Fund.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Please visit the CHART Grants page for other potential funding sources for summer programs. Happy summer planning!

1 comment :

  1. Please let us know if there are other good local summer programs for kids on the spectrum. Thanks!