“It's hard to imagine any other program, staff, or venue where individuals’ needs are so well met, where judgment of any kind is not made, where everyone can feel free to be themselves at all times. It never ceases to amaze us how accommodating the facility and program are and how well-trained the staff is. We feel so lucky to be served by this wonderful camp.”
- Alice, parent
Registration for the Summer Overnight Camp lottery is open through Feb. 28. Registration for Summer Day Camp will open March 1, and is first come, first served.
The Autism Society of North Carolina’s Summer Camp Program began in 1972, with six campers attending a week of camp. In 1997, ASNC opened Camp Royall, a 133-acre facility located near Pittsboro. Today, Camp Royall is the nation’s largest and oldest camp program for people on the autism spectrum, serving nearly 350 individuals each summer.
Camp Royall is designed to provide a week of typical camp activities, such as swimming, hiking, boating and arts & crafts in a structured environment to meet the needs of our campers. Campers receive close supervision from highly trained staff; our counselor to camper ratio is 1:1 or 1:2, depending on campers’ level of need.
Camp Royall serves campers from age 4 up to older adults. Campers are assigned to weeks according to their age and level. Each one-week session begins Sunday afternoon and ends Friday afternoon after the Camper Talent Show. Additionally, we offer specific weeks designed for campers with high-functioning autism or Asperger’s Syndrome.
Camp Royall provides:
Though the scope of activities and opportunities offered has grown tremendously, the primary focus of camp continues to be providing a structured recreational experience in a camp setting for children and adults on the autism spectrum.
Therapeutic and Educational Experiences
Campers have the opportunity to develop and expand their abilities in areas such as self-help, communication, social behavior, and independence while participating in a wide variety of recreational activities, including swimming, music, group games, hiking, and arts & crafts.
Respite for Families
Caring for an individual on the autism spectrum requires a tremendous amount of physical and emotional energy, attention, and patience. Camp gives families a well-deserved break from these demands.
Training for Students and Professionals
Camp is valuable training experience for students interested in a career in Special Education, Psychology, Speech Pathology, and other Human Services. Staff members are trained in a variety of techniques and strategies, and they have the opportunity to interact with different individuals on the autism spectrum.
Employment and Vocational Training for Individuals on the Autism Spectrum
Camp also provides a place for individuals to learn new job skills. Several adults on the autism spectrum work at our camps, assisting in many areas from cleaning to activity preparation.
Some of the features that make the Summer Camp Program at Camp Royall special are:
- We make every effort to serve all people on the autism spectrum.
- Camp Royall is the largest and oldest camp for individuals with autism in the world.
- Our camper-to-counselor ratio is 1:1 or 1:2, based on camper need.
- We provide our campers with close supervision and care throughout the day and night.
- Counselors receive intensive hands-on training provided by autism professionals.
- State-of-the-art cabins allow for traditional bunks, as well as private rooms for campers who need them.
- All cabins are air-conditioned and contain full baths and a washer and dryer.
To read the 2016 issue of the Camp Chronicle online, click here.
For a version you can download and print, click here.
Camp Royall is accredited by the American Camp Association.