As I was perusing the net for summer jobs tonight, I came across a statement on the Humane Society Day Camp’s website that completely shocked and repulsed me. Humane to animals, yes. Humane to children with disabilities? I’m not so sure.
As a university student, I was investigating day camps to apply for for summer positions within the city and came across the Humane Society Day Camp. I formerly thought highly of the great things I had heard of this camp from kids who attended until I came across this statement:
“Please note that our day camp programs are geared to children who are able to participate in group activities. We are not equipped to provide one-to-one supervision for children and may not be able to accommodate children with challenging special needs or behavioural issues.”
I think this is absolutely ridiculous, discriminatory and unfair to children with these sorts of special needs AND their parents, as an inclusion youth leader and a former childcare worker. Inclusion for children with physical, social, emotional, behavioural and intellectual differences IS possible within camp programming, and can be provided in various facets to be tailored to the individual child and their needs. Inclusive participation is not only highly beneficial to the social development of children WITH special needs, but also those without. ALL children are ABLE to participate in group activities providing inclusive practices are in place, which can be provided through a variety of organizations or family provided respite care.
If I am incorrect in your policy, please correct me, but if I am incorrect then your website’s response to inclusion of children with special needs requires revision. If I am not, then I stand by what I have written and I am unimpressed at the pure lack of effort in facilitating inclusive camp experiences to a specific group of children who could likely benefit from them the MOST.
Needless to say . . . I didn’t inquire about applying.
Or am I taking their “may not” as a will not, and thus making myself being the one being f**king ridiculous? Am I the crazy one?