Helping Hands is a program that strives to provide an integrated camp experience for children that benefit from additional supports in camp.

Helping Hands

Helping Hands is a program that strives to provide a positive, integrated day camp experience for children and youth with differing abilities who require additional support in camp.  A limited number of spaces and days are available for those requiring a helping hand in a one to one ratio.  Families who are applying for Financial Assistance from the Niagara Region should complete the subsidy process before contacting the Helping Hands team.

Does your child need one-on-one support at camp? Please assess your needs using the following criteria:

  • Extra support is needed in school.
  • Additional support or assistance is required for basic care (eg. toileting, feeding and changing)
  • A physical, developmental and/or learning disability exists that affects the safety of the participant or that of other program participants.
  • The participant is currently associated with a support agency.

If you answered yes to one or more of these questions or if you are unsure if your child requires one to one support, please contact the Helping Hands team at 905-934-9755 ext. 288 before April 1st to confirm the accessibility of the program location, special requirements you may have, if a Helping Hands Counsellor is required, and the suitability of the camp.  A member of our Helping Hands team will do a phone intake and work with you to determine what support is required at camp.

Registration for our Helping Hands program is in high demand. The number of Helping Hands spots are limited. If no support is available, families will have the option to bring their own Independent Support Worker. Please check back for more details on this option in mid-March.

Our request list for Helping Hands opens on Monday, April 1st, 2019 at 9:00 am. 

Please call the Helping Hands team at 905-934-9755 ext 288 or email helping.hands@niagara.ymca.ca to be put on the request list. Please include which weeks you are looking for.  Helping Hands weeks are assigned on a first come, first serve basis.  In order to serve more families, Helping Hands registration will be limited to three weeks per camper.  A member of the Helping Hands team will be in touch to speak with you about camp availability and registration details in late April.

Community Living

In Port Colborne-Wainfleet and Fort Erie, the YMCA of Niagara partners with Community Living to offer children with intellectual challenges that are supported by the agency additional support in camp.  For more information, please contact:

Port Colborne Wainfleet – Rita Smith, 905-835-8941 ext. 135

Fort Erie – Andria Willick, 905-871-6770 ext. 240