Summertime means its time for fun in the sun for all children across the country, including those with hearing loss. Unfortunately, it may be difficult to find summer programs that are accommodating or geared towards your child’s hearing disability. With over 6 million children participating in some form of summer program and over 12,000 summer camps to choose from, the options can be overwhelming. To make things simple, we’ve given you a list of hearing friendly summer programs from across the country, giving you the ability to hand-pick a wonderful summer experience for your child that is knowledgeable, empowering, and welcoming of their unique degree of hearing loss.
1. Sertoma Camp Endeavor – Dundee, Florida
After realizing a need for summer camps that accommodate and encourage the deaf and hard of hearing, Sertoma, a nationwide service club providing assistance to communities across the country with hearing health for over 100 years, founded Camp Endeavor to fulfill that purpose. Located in Dundee, Florida, Camp Endeavor has been housing campers and their families from across the country since 1976 with a focus on raising awareness and empowering campers in an informal and welcoming environment. Utilizing 32 acres of beautiful Florida landscape, Camp Endeavor unplugs children from their phones and computers and encourages interaction through water sports, crafts, bonfires, and outdoor games. Integrating hard of hearing children and their hearing family members, Camp Endeavor provides a fun and unique experience that is sure to make your child’s summer is one to remember.
2. Camp D.O.V.E. – Athens, Georgia
Founded in 1998 by Visual Effects, a non-profit performing arts organization created by deaf actors, Camp D.O.V.E. (Deaf Outreach Through Visual Effects) is a week-long overnight camping trip in which hearing and deaf children alike can have their special communication needs met in a fun, friendly, and Christian environment. Under the warm Georgia sun, campers participate in a variety of activities like swimming, magic, karate, campfires, and talent shows, all while enforcing common bonds through ASL. Suited for ages 8 and up to high-school, Camp D.O.V.E. provides an exciting and accepting environment for those who seek out a great summer experience and is run by a wonderful organization that provides hearing health information such as deaf etiquette and ASL classes to communities nationwide.
3. Camp Grizzly – Wilseyville, California
Located in the Camp Lodestar campground facilities, Camp Grizzly has been hosting deaf and hard of hearing campers since 1999. Established by NorCal Services for Deaf and Hard of Hearing, a non-profit 501(c)3 organization focused on providing hearing services to California, Camp Grizzly extends NorCal’s mission by giving campers the opportunity to develop their self-esteem, culture, friendship, and team-building skills in an adventurous and rich ecological environment. Ranging from ages 7 to 15, Camp Grizzly provides age-appropriate opportunities varying from zip lining, archery, talent shows, campfires, and sports, all under the supervision of experienced and dedicated staff who are committed to making sure your child thrives this summer.