Summer Camps for Children With Autism Outside the U.S.

As we get into summertime we are on the lookout for appropriate summer camps for children on the Autistic Spectrum. The summer break can be very long for our special children and we are always on the lookout for things to occupy them and help keep them in some sort of routine.

There are some interesting camps out there and here is what we’ve found so far:

Chuckles Nursery in Gorey, Co Wexford are running a camp right through July and August. This is a privately run camp with H.S.E. approval and the team of experienced and qualified childcare workers is led by Debbie Mc Cusker who is a qualified nurse for people with intellectual disabilities.  Debbie is also an ABA Tutor and they use PECS with the children.

They are taking children from the ages of 2yr 9 months up to 11 years. The cost is €25 per day with a minimum of 3 days a week. The children should bring a healthy packed lunch with them. I’ve been told that parents need to enrol as soon as possible as places are limited.

They are also running an after school club commencing in September taking children up to 11years of age.
Please contact Debbie at: (087) 9043994 or (053) 9484640 with any inquiries.

We’ve even found something for the extreme Water Babies among us…. a Surf Camp!

Surf2Heal is a non profit organization created By Jon Hynes the owner of GTown Surf School in Kinsale in Cork, his wife Alayne and Nollaig Hayes, a Garretstown resident, whose son Sean is on the autism spectrum. Run entirely by a team of committed volunteers who freely give their time, energy and enthusiasm, Surf2Heal is continuing to go from strength to strength and enabling more and more young people to enjoy the ocean and its benefits.

This year they have a camp in Tramore, Co Waterford from July 1st to 4th. It costs €115 for four sessions which includes an annual membership of the ECSC. You need to provide your own transport and accommodation and a Parent/Guardian must be present on the beach during the class. This could easily be incorporated into a family holiday if you were planning on holidaying at home this year!

There are only 15 places available. Please check out the above link for further details, including some testimonials, or contact Shane Holohan at dublin@surf2heal.org.

There are other camps detailed here. Some are yet to be announced and the others may be full.

Although not a Summer Camp, The TripleA group, which is the Autism support group for the North Wicklow/ South Dublin area, run some very interesting events/trips during the summer months. For example there’s Archery next week, Lego Robots in July, cinema trip and probably the annual zoo trip yet to be announced! My Wiiboy has built up some friendships with this group over the last few years, I have to say.

There are some camps out there that, while not specifically  designed for Special Needs children, are very inclusive and Playball is one such camp. I personally found this camp to be of huge benefit to WiiBoy when in the throes of making the transition to full time mainstream schooling. Particularly when at the stage that neither the Special Needs Summer Camp nor the other mainstream Summer Camps were deemed suitable.

Playball is a Sport and Movement Program that’s been developed over 25 years. Sport psychologists, occupational therapists and pro sport coaches are all adding to the worldwide success of Playball (Kidinmecorp).

Children from age 2 are taught our age specific programs. In Playball, children learn the basis for sports such as – hockey, baseball, basketball, cricket, tennis, football, volleyball and more.
Playball plays a vital part in the health and well being of every child. Sport help us learn life skills such as respect, sportmanship, responsibility, confidence, self-esteem, patience, tolerance and leadership. Playball gives children the opportunity to explore their creativity and imagination. Through the medium sport they experience fun, laughter, joy and being able and competent.
Playball are running  a number of Summer Camps in Arklow, Aughrim, Bray/Shankill, Greystones, Ballinteer and Killiney ranging in Price from €85 – €130 per week. Please check here for more details or contact Kurt @ 0861744923 or e-mail him at info@playball.ie.

Playball also do really cool Birthday parties!

The Creativity Mill in Castlerea are running  Arty Farty Summer Camps. They aim to Encourage your child’s imagination and social skills with a mixture of fun, art and craft activities and traditional games and fun.

The Camps will run for 4 weeks July 12th-16th, 19th-23rd,26th-30th and August 3rd-6th. Suitable for 4 to 13 years. 2 sessions each day – 10 til 1 and 2 til 5. €50 for 5 sessions (1 week) or €90 for full day (1 week).

Each week they will base the camp around the work of a different famous artist. Using age appropriate methods and materials they will entertain and educate the children while they are having fun and making friends. This camp is open to all children of all abilities.I have also been informed of a series of very interesting camps which may suit the techie children in our midst! The Digital Hub, based in the liberties in Dublin, run a series of camps on Animation and Mission Making (game making) among others. Again this camp is not geared towards special needs but it could really appeal to our computer literate children. It sounds truly amazing and appears to be preparing children for the way forward…. The Digital Hub is an Irish Government initiative to create an international centre of excellence for knowledge, innovation and creativity focused on digital content and technology enterprises” . And who better to take part in this I.T/Digital revolution then our computer literate kids! Check out the link. Animation camp suitable for age 8+ and Mission Maker for age 12+And finally, another  inclusive Camp on offer is a  Musical Theatre Summer Camp being run by Jazzygal. Please see here for details.Please note that these are all privately run Camps. I’ve written this post as Summer Camps may be something that some of you might be considering for your child. To run parallel with July Provision perhaps and to maybe help with your child’s social skills in a group setting?

If you know of any other camps that might be of interest please let us know and we will share the information.

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Irish Autism Action
Irish Autism Action is an umbrella organisation with 33 member groups and 3,500 individual members. Our members range from the 13 Special Schools for Children with Autism to local support groups and are located in practically every county in Ireland.
Irish Autism Action

Irish Autism Action

Irish Autism Action is an umbrella organisation with 33 member groups and 3,500 individual members. Our members range from the 13 Special Schools for Children with Autism to local support groups and are located in practically every county in Ireland.

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