With the end of the school year fast approaching, now is the golden hour to get summer camps booked. After all, it’s only a matter of time before the kids are home for good.
For families with children with autism, finalizing summer plans can be an extra challenge, especially when it comes to finding programs that are just as fun as they are supportive. Luckily, the Hudson Valley and Westchester are packed to the brim with options.
Browse through our list to find the perfect fit for your little one this summer.
This High Falls camp runs week-long programs that center around kid-friendly themes. Campers can enter a fantasy world for animation week, grab their favorite books for storybooks week, or explore the galaxy for High Falls Stars week. The camp operates on a therapeutic programming model to positively challenge students and promote trust and cooperation.
High Falls; 855.707.2267
Length: Two four-week sessions and a one-week session
Registration is open and limited to the first 50 campers per week due to COVID safe distancing.
Kids can roam free across Camp Ramapo’s 250-acre campus in Rhinebeck. Open to little ones between the ages of 6 and 16, Ramapo works with children affected by social, emotional, and learning challenges to build relationships, improve self-confidence, and have fun. Uniquely, the camp maintains a 1:1 staff to camper ratio, which means each child gets hands-on attention. There is also a teen leadership program for 14- to 16-year-olds who seek to gain more independence and responsibilities.
Length: Varied, one- to nine-week session options
Camp Sunrise, Camp Warwick’s programming for individuals with special needs, caters to people ages 8 to 55. Each session runs for five days in June or July. During that time, campers test out a variety of community activities, such as hiking, bowling, and dancing. More activities include picnicking at Wawayanda State Park and a drive-in movie.
Length: One week
Registration is open for all camps at limited capacity.
Since 1965, Clover Patch Camp has made a name for itself as a summer hub for individuals with disabilities. The Glenville site includes trails, cabin lodging, and a heated swimming pool to help campers make the most of their days. Clover Patch also offers Camp Spectacular, a day camp option for children with autism spectrum disorders. The camp maintains a 2:1 camper to counselor ratio.
Type: Residential and commuter
Length: Five days for residential session or four days for commuter session
As part of Greystone Programs’ autism support initiatives, Club Aspire extends its afterschool support into a summer break event for kids ages 6 to 21. Youths in Ulster and Orange Counties can spend the dog days of summer having the time of their lives. Campers can learn money and time management skills, along with arts and crafts, dancing, cooking, and music.
Length: One week
The Dutchess County branch of Greystone Programs offers its summer break extension for boys and girls ages 6 to 21. Children receive individualized assistance and learn about self-care, safety, and social skills.
Wappingers Falls; 845.452.5772
Length: One week
The “Toward Tomorrow” program at the JCC of Mid-Westchester caters to young learners with developmental needs ages 3 to 5. Kids can experience music, swimming, and other activities that enrich the monthly theme. Parents can choose between half-day and full-day options based upon their child’s needs. School district approval is required in order for a child to be accepted into the program.
Length: 2-8 week session options
Open to children and teens ages 4 to 20, the North East Westchester Special Recreation Summer Day Camp divides campers into supportive groups based on independence levels. The days are divided into four activity sessions in the morning, followed by breaks for lunch, swimming, and one afternoon activity.
Briarcliff Manor; 914.347.4409
Length: Six weeks
Summer 2021 will have limited registration due to COVID restrictions. Please submit your camp registration and forms to email@example.com.
This camp focuses on children with special needs ages 10 to 17, with a setting that allows for character development and encourages social and emotional growth through fun programming that fosters new friendships. Campers are encouraged to try activities among the art, sports, and adventure programs before they choose what to specialize in during their time at camp.
Saratoga Springs; 212.289.4872
Length: 3 or 6 weeks