Summer may end soon, but you can always prepare your children and families’ future for next summer. This is our current information, and we will check back for new updates when summer gets closer. Do you have any wonderful plans for your children or your family for next summer? Summer is the perfect time to go on a unique road trip, plan a family vacation, or send your children to summer camp. Summer camp is a special event for many deaf and hard of hearing children because it allows them to socialize and develop social skills with other children who are deaf like them. It is also a great tool to help deaf and hard of hearing children who are mainstreamed to improve their signing or social skills. There are a variety of summer camps that are available and provide social learning all over the U.S. Most summer camps require an application and an application fee beforehand.
As a parent or guardian, you may be concerned about whether the camp is a right fit for your child who doesn’t use sign language or is strongly oral; I understand entirely and highly recommend contacting the camp sponsor directly for more information about staff and how the program is coordinated to deal with children who may communicate solely through speech. Regardless of communication differences, remember that many deaf and hard-of-hearing children communicate exclusively through speech, and your child will love to make new friends who happen to be deaf like them. Even though it may be scary for us parents to send our children to a new place with unfamiliar faces, your child will come back with personal growth, extra knowledge, hope for the future, and a sense of belonging for the first time.
Do your children love water activities and being outside? During the summer, many people often take road trips or plan a vacation in Florida. Florida is one of the largest tourist states, and if you plan on taking a family trip to Florida, I have several camps listed. There is a FSDB Summer Day Camp in St. Augustine, Florida, from June 20th to 24th. Any deaf and hard-of-hearing child, including blind children who are currently in the 3rd, 4th, or 5th grade, can enroll in the summer day camp and if that’s an option for you, click below. You could enjoy the day at the beach while your child attends summer day camp.
Sertoma Camp Endeavor is another camp that is located in Dundee, Florida. This camp is well-known in Florida, and many DHH children go there to enjoy many activities and socialize with friends. The dates are from July 10th to July 16th for teenagers. The dates are from July 17th to July 23rd for young children.
CAMP WILLARD, Indiana
Camp Willard is a nine-day summer camp in Indiana for deaf and hard-of-hearing children. It’s an excellent experience for deaf children to socialize and learn more about camping in a fun learning environment. (I went there when I was younger and had a great time. I grew up mainstream and had no idea about deaf schools or there were many deaf people around. I learned about this camp from an interpreter, and I’m grateful she told me about it. Even though I signed SEE and many children and staff signed ASL, they were all friendly and supportive and wanted me to be there to enjoy the experience.)
CAMP MARK SEVEN, New York
An ASL Youtube music video was filmed in Camp Mark Seven. This camp may be familiar to you. If you are interested in watching the video, click down below.
Suppose you have a hearing child and are interested in sending them to a camp, including socializing with other hearing children with deaf parents. The Deaf Camp (Ages 9-14) is from June 26 to July 8th, 2022. There is a Koda Youth Camp (Ages 11-13) from July 24 to August 5th. There is a Koda Teen Camp (Ages 14-16) from July 10th to July 22nd.
Suppose you have a high school student interested in educational opportunities or looking forward to gaining worldly experience. In that case, the Youth Leadership Camp in Oregon may be an excellent fit. The date is from June 29th to July 24th. The NAD Youth Leadership Camp (YLC) is a four-week summer camp for deaf and hard-of-hearing high school students. They provide daily workshops covering subjects like self-advocacy, peer mentoring, communication, media, etc.
If you are interested in looking for more camps available for your deaf and hard-of-hearing child, click on the link below. Gallaudet University is a Deaf university in Washington, D.C. They have a long list of summer camps in different states that are readily available. Check them out, and I hope you get to find a summer camp that fits you and your family’s plans for the summer! Stay safe, and have a wonderful summer!