The Constance & David Blacher Children’s Special Needs Program


Integrated/Self-Contained Units


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Tikvah, which means hope in Hebrew, is a unit of Camp Shalom for children and teens, K-6th grades with varying exceptionalities such as cognitive, emotional, developmental and learning disabilities.

We incorporate an inclusive camp environment for all campers. This allows all participants to have opportunities throughout the summer to socially and recreationally interact with one another. The Tikvah unit also provides programs specifically geared towards enhancing and developing skills that are crucial to our campers such as sensory, occupational, music and yoga therapies, just to name a few. Daily swimming and weekly field trips are part of the camp calendar as well.

Staff embraces each participant’s individuality, and supports campers in their efforts to improve abilities and achieve their goals. Our low camper to staff ratio provides our campers with an opportunity for adventure and accomplishment with the safest supervision standards.


Shining Stars

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We are excited to bring back the unit, Shining Stars, formerly known as Summer Stars. This program is specifically designed for teens to young adults, 7th grade through 12+ (22 years).

These individuals will participate in age appropriate activities in 1:3 ratios. Camp activities are planned with a focus on teaching a variety of skills and improving self-esteem. Summer enrichment programs are implemented into daily schedules including swimming, yoga, music, fitness, art, field trips and more.

New campers must have an intake interview with the Special Needs Director. The JCC provides 1:3 ratios, but cannot provide one-on-one supervision.


Inclusion available for campers in Grades K-6

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We believe that every child can succeed, every child can participate, and every child can make friends. We believe that inclusion is good for everyone — kids with and without disabilities, families, staff, and our community!

Inclusion campers will participate with their typically developing peers with a little more supervision. We give special consideration to matching personality types of other campers, as well as the primary counselor, to ensure the most successful experience.

New campers who wish to participate in our inclusion program must have an intake meeting and get approval from the Special Needs Director prior to registering for camp.

Space is limited. Returning campers will be given priority for admission to the inclusion program. An additional fee of $100 per week will be added for providing extra supervision.

Who is a good fit for the Inclusion Program?

  • Campers in Grades K-6
  • Safety comes first. Campers need to be able to participate safely in activities without one-to-one support. Aggressive behaviors may result in dismissal from the program.
  • Campers, 6+ years and older, need to be able to change clothes, eat and toilet independently. While inclusion staff gives individual support when campers need it, each inclusion staff person serves 3-4 campers.


Summer School Fridays

Children who attend summer school can attend Camp Shalom on Fridays when school is not in session. Dates will follow the Palm Beach County Summer School Calendar. Please look under Dates & Prices for additional information.

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