Teen & Young Adult Summer Camps

The following information is provided to assist families with identifying day camps that are specialized for teens and young adults with disabilities, or inclusive camps that are welcoming to all abilities and may provide additional supports to youth with special needs.  Families are encouraged to contact the camp directly to discus your campers unique interests and support needs to determine if the program will be a good fit.

 

Adults in Motion (Kitchener, Cambridge)

Who:  Ages 14+ with developmental disabilities
Format:  Day program
Description: Summer Camp Days are flexible and can be built around your summer schedule by choosing the specific days or weeks desired.  Campers will be accepted based on meeting criteria and space being available at the program location.  Campers must be independent in the washroom.  AIM is unable to support aggressive or ‘running away’ behaviours in this environment.  
Support:  Low ratio program (5:1) 

Contact:   519-577-3723 or Email (Kitchener-Waterloo)
                 519-277-3723 or Email (Cambridge)
Registration:  2021 registration now open

AIM KW School Camp Program (Waterloo)

Who:  Campers ages Jk- Grade 8, students with special needs who need frequent breaks, have non violent behaviours (ie crying or hiding under desks,) students who need time to adjust to routine, transitions, movement breaks, extra support, individually catered activities, quiet rooms, etc.
Format:  Individualized day camp
Description: Learning math and language through interactive games and activities catered to each student's needs. Afternoon engineering and STEM projects- robots, hydraulic claws, pinball machines etc.
Support:  low ratio 10:1 with additional volunteers. Experienced staff who are able to support transitions and facilitate breaks, help manage emotional regulation for non-violent outbursts.
Contact AIM KW School Camp Program                                                                                                                                                Registration:  Open weekly from July 12- August 16,2021  $380/week.  Any campers who register for AIM KW School year 2021/2022 will receive a free week of camp.

 

Aldaview Services (New Hamburg)    

Who:  Completed grade 9 and older
Format:  Summer day programming
Description: The Summer Opportunities program is for individuals with developmental disabilities who have been attending highschool during this past year and who are interested in participating during the summer months and March Break.  The program runs daily Monday to Friday and March Break.  Participants are involved in social, leisure, and recreational opportunities in the community at their level of interest.
Support:  Low ratio, contact the program to discuss your teen’s support needs
Contact:  519-662-5174  
Registration:  See website for updates

 

Arts Abound (St. Jacobs)

Who:  Ages 4-teen
Format:  Specialized day camp
Description:  Arts Abound programs help children and youth discover and develop their creative side, whatever their ability!  Day camp programs integrate music, dance, drama and visual arts. The Arts for All Exceptional Camp runs for one week each summer specifically for children with special needs. This program includes smaller class sizes with more one-on-one support. Visit the website to register.
Support:  Arts Abound is founded on principles of inclusion.  Contact us to discus your child’s support needs.  
Contact:  519-206-2787 or Email 

Registration:  visit the website for updates

Arts Express (Waterloo)

Who:  Ages 6-14 with special needs
Format:  Day camp for children with special needs and their siblings/friends
Description:  Program ON HOLD for 2021.  Arts Express provides an inclusive arts experience for children with special needs, their siblings, and friends. This camp is run by Wilfrid Laurier University’s Music Therapy program in partnership with KidsAbility, Conestoga College's ECE program, University of Waterloo, and Carousel Dance Centre.  This camp is hosted for one week each summer at KidsAbility’s Waterloo site with a final performance taking place at WLU on Friday afternoon for friends and family.
Support:  camp volunteers available to provide 1:1 support.  Support workers welcome.  
Contact: Contact Emily at WLU at 519-884-0710 x2658 or Email for more information.  
Registration:  Program on hold for 2021 


Camp Brebeuf (Rockwood)

Who:  ages 5 - 17  
Format: Inclusive day camp (overnight camp options available)
Description:  Adventure.  Faith.  Unplugged.  C. Y. O. Camp Brebeuf is operated by the Catholic Youth Organization of Hamilton, and offers both day camp and overnight camp options for children ages 4-12, plus leadership training opportunities for teens.  Programming includes arts and crafts, drama and music, high ropes, pool, canoeing, faith, adventure skills, sports, and nature/camping.  The Inclusion Program is available to both day and overnight campers from ages 5-17.  
Support: Inclusion program available to provide 1:1 or 2:1 support for both day campers and overnight campers; Option to bring your own 1:1 support
Contact:  Call Katie at 519-856-4671 or Email
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open January 15, 2021

 

Camp Kummoniwannago (Waterloo)

Who:  Ages 5-15
Format:  Inclusive day camp
Description:  Camp Kummoniwannago welcomes, with open arms, all children to flourish as individuals and as a team, regardless of ability, to a fun outdoor experience in God’s natural environment, providing a deep love and respect of the earth.  We do this by showing respect for each other, providing opportunities for friendship, fellowship, and belonging, leading to a sense of community and fostering a shared experience.  Accredited by OCA.  
Support:  Inclusion program provides 1:1 support to campers with special needs.  Five Inclusion spots available each week.  
Contact:  519-578-4430 or Email
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open March 1st

 

Camp Pride (Kitchener)

Who:  Ages 6-12 with and without special needs, ages 13+ with special needs
Format:  Inclusive day camp ages 4-12, specialized day camp ages 13+
Description:  Camp Pride is a fully integrated day camp open to children ages 6-12 with or without special needs, and offers two weeks of programming specifically for teens with special needs.    The program is designed to ensure that each camper has an active, challenging, and fun summer camp experience.  The camp day includes a morning riding lesson with the horses, and during the afternoons campers will participate in exciting and stimulating camp activities including arts, crafts, sports, games, and horsemanship activities.  
Support:  Staff and horses are experienced with children with special needs, contact Pride Stables to discus your child’s support needs. Personal Support Workers welcome.  
Contact:  519-653-46686 or Email 
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration is open

 

Camp Sunrise (Puslinch)  

Who:  Ages 5-13+ with and without special needs
Format:  Inclusive Day Camp
Description:  Sunrise is proud to offer inclusive day camps for children and youth aged 5 – 13+. We provide structured programming and theme days throughout the summer. One of our camp sessions has an Interdenominational Christian theme. Our welcoming family atmosphere places an emphasis on teamwork and respect for others.
Sunrise provides a safe and friendly atmosphere along with:
  • Ontario Camp Association accreditation
  • Canadian Therapeutic Riding Association certified instructors
  • Certified lifeguards
  • Low ratio of counsellors to children (1:6 ratio plus each group will have a Leader-in-Training)
  • Mature, experienced staff with First aid and CPR training
Support:  Low ratio (6:1) with experienced staff (and horses!)
Contact:  519-837-0558 or Email 
Registration:  Check the website for updates

 

Carousel Dance Centre

Who:  Ages 4-12, Ages 10-25 with special needs
Format:  Inclusive day camp, specialized day camp for ages 10-25 with special needs
Description:  We believe that all individuals should have the opportunity to experience dance and we have developed a unique program which builds a repertoire of movement technique adapted to meet the needs of children and adults with both physical and developmental disabilities.  Our co-ed program fosters creative and artistic expression within a socially interactive environment and encourages enjoyment of dancing through participation.  In addition to our specialized programming for children with disabilities, we also encourage integration within both our full year programs and our summer dance camps.  
Support:  Carousel has a long history of running inclusive and specialized programs.  Contact the centre to discus your child’s support needs.  
Contact:  519-746-8877 or Email 
Registration:  Check the website for updates

 

City of Guelph 

Who:  Ages 13-25
Format:  Specialized day camp
Description:  Come join the fun!  Youth on the Move is a camp for teens and young adults with disabilities.  Participate in daily outdoor activities, swimming, sports, arts and crafts, theme days, trips within the community and special guests.  Campers will meet new friends, build self-esteem, and enjoy physical activity and skill development in a safe and secure environment.    
Support:  Every effort is made to provide support to participants with disabilities either through staff, volunteers and/or the use of adaptive equipment.  Support is based on available resources and is not guaranteed.  
Contact:  519-822-1260 x2701 or Email 
Alternate Website
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open March 12

 

City of Kitchener 

Who:  Ages 4-12, Ages 10-17 with special needs
Format:  Inclusive day camp, Specialized day camps for ages 10-17 with special needs
Description:  A fun, inclusive and safe experience your camper is sure to enjoy!  Camp programs will maximize outdoor spaces and include active and quiet games, activities that encourage social connections with new friends, and opportunities to be creative.  In 2021, YOUth Sense will offer two weeks of specialized programming for youth ages 10-14 with special needs, and All About YOUth will offer two weeks of specialized programming for youth ages 13-17 with special needs.  Both specialized programs will be facilitated by the Inclusion staff and offered at a 3:1 camper to camp staff ratio.  
Support:  Inclusion facilitators available to provide 1:1 or 1:2 support for inclusive day camps.  Specialized camps for youth with special needs including YOUth Sense (Ages 10-14) and All About YOUth (Ages 13-17) offer low ratio programming (1:3 staff to camper).  
Contact:  519-741-2200 x7229 or Email access@kitchener.ca
Alternate Website
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open March 8, 2021


Community Living Cambridge

Who:  Ages 14-22 with disabilities
Format:  Specialized summer camp day program
Description: Community Living Cambridge offers 6 weeks of summer camp July – mid August for individuals with developmental disabilities. This camp has a ratio or 10-12 campers to 4 camp councillors.    
Support:  Low ratio program (3:1)
Contact:  519-841-0396 or Email
Registration:  2021 Registration will open May 3rd

 

Engineering Science Quest  (Waterloo) 

Who:  Children entering grades 2-9
Format:  Inclusive day camp
Description:  Our camp participants explore the world of science, engineering and technology through participation in hands-on projects. Each year, our staff of engineering, science and education university students develop exciting new activities for their camp that explore physics, chemistry, biology and health science, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and computer and electrical engineering.  
Support:  Program Assistants are available to provide support and facilitate accommodations for children with special needs.  Program assistants float between camps and are available to respond to situations where low ratio or “as needed” support is required.  
Contact:  519-888-4856 or Email 
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open March 31, 2021

 

Extend-A-Family Waterloo Region (Kitchener) 

Who:  Ages 13+ with special needs
Format:  Specialized daytime vacation weeks, 5-day and 4-night adventures also available
Description: A fun-filled, friend-making summer experience of swimming, outings, dancing, sports, arts and crafts, special guests and a variety of activities while also giving families a break.  Themed weeks and activities accommodate a wide range of abilities ensuring that all participants have the opportunity to contribute.    
Support:  Low ratio, programming provided by person-centred, community-first coordinators
Contact:  519-741-0190 or Email   
Summer Programs  
Registration:  See website for updates

 

Hidden Acres Mennonite Camp (New Hamburg) 

Who:  ages 6-15 (Overnight camp), ages 18 - 35 (Supported Young Adults Overnight camp)
Format:  Inclusive overnight camp, specialized overnight camp, day camp options available
Description:  Hidden Acres is a summer camp and retreat centre located in the rolling hills of Perth Country between Stratford and Kitchener-Waterloo. Hidden Acres focuses on the development of the whole person – physically, socially, emotionally and spiritually. To ensure that as many campers as possible can have a fantastic experience at camp, an Inclusion Program has been providing extra staff support to campers with special needs since 1974.  
Support: 1:1 & shared support available
Contact:  519-625-8602 or Email  
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open February 1st, 2021

 

Kerry’s Place Autism Services (Guelph) 

Who:  Children and teens with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Format:  Specialized day camp, overnight respite support available
Description:  We are pleased to offer a summer day camp experience for children with autism. Children will participate in an exciting and educational program facilitated by trained counselors to encourage and support your child while at camp.  This camp is designed for individuals who are able to participate with minimal support. The individual may need some prompts to stay on task, and is able to communicate wants and needs effectively. The individual does not require a lot of behavioral redirection. Should you require extra support to participate in the activities you are welcome to join with the support of your own 1:1 worker.
Support: Low ratio programming by professional staff, families welcome to provide worker
Contact:  1-833-775-3779 or Email  
Registration:  Check website for updates

 

KidsAbility Camps (Waterloo, Kitchener, Cambridge, Guelph) 

Who:  Ages 4-12 with special needs, high school aged with special needs, siblings often welcome
Format:  Specialized day camps, therapy camps
Description:  A variety of day camps designed to meet the needs of KidsAbility families.  All camps begin with a focus on fun, and then build learning and practice opportunities into the camp programming for campers to achieve their therapy goals – social skills, communication skills, physical skills, independent living skills, and recreational skills.  **Summer 2021 camps will only be held at the Waterloo site, teen programming on hold for summer 2021**  
Support:  Low ratio programming, families are welcome to provide a support worker, camp volunteers may be available to provide additional support to camper groups
Contact:  519-886-8886 x1349  or Email 
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration scheduled to open April 1, 2021

 

Light House Programs (Kitchener)  

Who:  Individuals 18+ with developmental disabilities
Format:  Summer day programming
Description: Program for individuals who wish to be part of a community based program and continue their learning of life skills, social skills, and meet new people.  
Support:  Must be able to attend a program independently with a 1:6 (staff to participant) ratio and manage own behaviours
Contact:  519-338-2681 or Email    
Registration:  Contact the program for more information and availability

 

Movin’ and Groovin’  (Waterloo)

Who:  Programming designed for ages 6-12 with special needs, teens welcome if programming will be an appropriate fit
Format:  Specialized day camp, typically two weeks of half-day programming
Description:  A fun, fit, and fab camp for children and adolescents of all abilities run by Kinesiology at WLU.  The camp typically runs two weeks of half day programming.
Support:  Low ratio programming, typically 1:1 support available
Contact:  519-884-0710 x3637 or Email  
Registration: TBD

 

Our Studio (Kitchener)  

Who:  Teens and adults with special needs
Format:  Specialized summer camps and day programs
Description: Our studio is a creative community hub for anyone interested in the arts.  This space is a supportive environment where both peers and facilitators will help you to develop your talents.  We specialize in open arts, music and theatrical opportunities and develop our actions to support your interests.    
Support:  low ratio programs
Contact:  519-501-6747 or Email    
Registration: visit the website for more information

 

Playsense Activity Centre (Guelph) 

Who:  Ages 6 and up with special needs
Format:  Specialized day camp
Description:  Playsense is a fully accessible play center for individuals of any age with developmental disabilities. Diverse play activities & specialized adapted equipment promote fun, creativity & movement exploration, maximizing the physical, cognitive, and social development of individuals with special needs. Fun outings into the community complement the fun and festivities found within the walls of PLAYSENSE. Separate summer camps are offered to youths, teens and adults. We believe everyone deserves the right to play. PlaySense is a fully-accessible recreation center that addresses the physical and educational needs of disabled people of all ages and ability levels. The PlaySense program includes camps, PD day recreation, evening programs, and more
Support:  Low ratio, family provided workers welcome
Contact: 519-780-5052 or 226-820-6933 or Email  
Registration:  Check website for updates

 

Rainbow Day Camp  (Guelph) 

Who:  Ages 4-14, ages 12-18 with special needs
Format:  Inclusive day camp and LIT program, specialized teen camp for youth with special needs
Description: Rainbow Programmes for Children offers Guelph and the surrounding area a summer recreational day camp experience for children and youth, providing quality programs in a caring and open environment which embraces diversity and encourages personal growth, according to each individual’s uniqueness, strengths, needs and abilities.  
Support:  Inclusion Counsellors available to provide 1:1 support for inclusive day camps.  Low ratio and 1:1 programming available for teen camps.  
Contact:  519-837-0387
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open March 8, 2021

 

Sunbeam Community & Developmental Services (Kitchener)  

Who:  Ages 4-18 who are medically fragile or technologically dependent (MFTD), Ages 18+ with developmental disabilities
Format:  Specialized day camp
Description:  Come join in on the fun at the summer day camp for children and teens who are medically fragile and/or technologically dependent at the Sunbeam Community & Developmental Services.  We offer an exciting theme-based program for children and teens that includes crafts, swimming, Snoezelen room time, community outings, physical fitness and games in the gym.  All activities are geared towards having fun and making new friends.  
Support:  Low ratio programming provided by experienced staff including an RPN
Contact:  519-893-6200 x239 or Email   
Registration:  Summer 2021 registration will open March 1, 2021 via www.mycommunityhub.ca

 

Youth Exploring Possibilities (YEP)  (Kitchener) 

Who:  Ages 13-21 who meet eligibility for Developmental Services
Format:  Summer day program
Description: YEP is offered for 6 weeks each summer and focuses on exploration of community resources, recreational activities, work place and volunteer sites, while developing confidence in the community by utilizing Grand River Transit as the primary mode of transportation.  
Support:  Low ratio group program (1:4)
Contact:  519-208-2225 or Email  
Registration:  See website for updates.  Program on hold due to COVID as of February, 2021