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Summer Camp to Expand Programming for Children with Special Needs

Summer Camp to Expand Programming for Children with Special Needs

Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp will offer increased integration opportunities for campers with special needs during its next summer session.


Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp on Long Island will be offering increased integration opportunities for campers with special needs on campus and in the community, starting summer 2018.  

Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp is a camp for children on the autism spectrum and who have other neurobiological disorders. The camp, held on the West Hills Academy campus in Huntington, gives children on the autism spectrum in kindergarten to 12th grade the opportunity to experience a traditional summer camp while receiving the support they need. 

Gersh Academy, a school for children on the autism spectrum, located in West Hempstead, began its partnership with West Hills Day Camp in 2009. Though the camp has been in existence for many years, it wants to get the word out about its programming for children with special needs.

“We’ve really honed in on our craft on how to best serve these campers that need a little more therapeutic support but still want to enjoy a fantastic summer experience at camp,” says senior direct, Kimberly Doxey-Davila.

Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp operates like a traditional day camp, offering children sports activities, an adventure course, swimming, theater, and arts and crafts. It also provides campers with the opportunity to opt in to academic activities as well.

“It’s not a typical summer school program, where kids are sitting at a desk all day," Doxey-Davila says. "For example, they may be encouraged to use math skills while fishing or boating, or handing out snacks.” 

All of the staff members who work at the camp are trained in the Gersh Academy philosophies. Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp also provides therapeutic support all day long for all campers.

“Children at camp are safe, and growing, and having fun on their level and in the ways that they need to. We want these kids to grow up to be confident individuals no matter what their background or limitations might be,” Doxey-Davila says.

Families with children interested in the academic and therapeutic support this camp has to offer should reach out, as Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp likes to to meet and screen its campers so that it knows if there is enough support in place for them and to be able to place them in the right group.


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Main image: Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp provides a traditional summer camp experience for children on the autism spectrum.
Courtesy Gersh Academy @ West Hills Day Camp
 


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