Eyewitness News reporter Rachel Polansky asks - What happens when the school year ends for children with special needs?
"It's tough, don't get me wrong. We struggle daily with meltdowns and even just sitting down to dinner is really tough for us," says Denice Pacquette. She has a 5-year-old autistic son named Travis.
1 in 88 children in the U.S. is born with autism. Students can attend special education classes during the year but what happens when the summer comes? The Kelberman Center wants every child to have a normal camp experience and that experience starts right here at 'The Awesome Summer Days Program.
"He can come and be himself and be with other kids that are on the spectrum as well. And the staff that Kelberman has, they're remarkable and they make tremendous differences in these kids lives," says Pacquette.
Denice Paquette's 5-year-old son Travis was born with autism. Travis has a tough time communicating with others, but with the Kelberman Center's summer camp program, he can have fun and Denice can have peace of mind. The executive director says living with autism is an ongoing struggle
"We don't stop on the school year calendar. We've created some very innovative programs that offer all students, all ages, the opportunity to make friends, be a part of summer camp and develop social skills," says Rob Myers, executive director of The Kelberman Center.
Kelberman campers participate in swimming, fishing, cooking, and tons of field trips. The staff says they try to teach skills in a fun and engaging way for every camper. "Awesome Summer Days" will run through August.