Who cares if the snow is still flying? It's time to consider summer camp options for your child. The Chicago area is teeming with day, overnight and away camp choices, assuring something for everyone regardless of age, ability, interest or budget. Tucked inside all the fun is an abundance of benefits, especially for children with special needs.
Consider these important benefits of a summer camp experience:
Registration is already under way for many camps. Since the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, all camps must make reasonable accommodations so that children with special needs can attend. Thirty years ago, before the passage of the ADA, most parents felt lucky if there was even one camp that met their child's needs. Today the choices are plentiful, including specialized camps designed just for children with a particular need (asthma, spina bifida, cerebral palsy, cancer, etc.), and also general camps that may be geared to kids with special needs, including kids who have learning or behavioral problems, kids with specific chronic illnesses, and kids with mental or physical impairments. Now, thanks to the ADA, any camp can be a possibility with the right supports, staff training and planning.
Whether it is a day experience nearby or a week-long away camp, your local special recreation association, park district, village, church, private or nonprofit disability agency are all options to seek. The best fit for you and your child is out there.