Q&A: 18 Recommended Winter Resources & Activities for Families with Special Needs in Western MA

Q&A: 18 Recommended Winter Resources & Activities for Families with Special Needs in Western MA

When our readers ask, Hilltown Families does our best to find the answers. Please feel encouraged to share your favorite places in the comment section!

Jean Engle of North Adams writes, “Once the colder weather sets in, where are the best places to visit and socialize for parents and children with special needs? Are there any specialized activities?”

Holyoke High School’s Adaptive Physical Education Program is an inspiration! Here’s a video of the program they held at Fitzpatrick Ice Arena to inspire other schools and communities to model a similar program in their area:

Lisa Levheim writes, “It’s a little far from North Adams, but Whole Children in Hadley is amazing! They have after school programs and daytime programs for homeschoolers and younger kids.”

Swansea Benham Bleicher writes, “Most family centers will welcome children with special needs. Contact the Coordinators ahead of time if you are concerned: Northampton Parents Center, Easthampton Family Center, Belchertown Family Center, Amherst Family Center, Cummington Family Center, Gateway Family Center, South Hadley Family Center, Ware Family Center

Matt Sawyer writes,Ski Butternut offers skiing and snowboarding adaptive programs for people with special needs.” Read the rest of this entry »

Summer Resources for Children with Special Needs

Summer Resources for Children with Special Needs

Summer is just around the corner and you’re probably looking forward to getting outside with your family. Kids are all about the summer activities: summer camp, swimming, hiking, sailing, you name it!

If your child is physically or intellectually disabled you’ll still certainly feel just as much need to get outside, but you may be worrying that there aren’t as many programs available that will cater to your child’s needs.

Look no further! There is an entire world of outdoor events and programs designed for special needs kids and, believe it or not, Massachusetts is home to many of them!

Every year the Physical Therapy department at the Franciscan Hospital for Children compiles a comprehensive guide to organizations and programs providing physical activity opportunities for children with special needs in Massachusetts and New England. All you need to do is check out their guide, find an activity suitable for your kid, and sign up!

Here is the Franciscan Hospital for Children: Physical Activity and Recreational Guide.

And if your child is visually impaired you may also want to join MAPVI, The Massachusetts Association for Parents of the Visually Impaired. They organize all sorts of fun family events too. Our favorites are the assisted sailing event and the Fishing Derby.

Have a fun and adventurous summer!

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Amber BobnarAmber Bobnar

Amber lives with her husband and son in Watertown, MA. Originally hailing from Hawaii, Amber and her family moved to Watertown to be closer to the Perkins School for the Blind where her son attends preschool. She has a Master’s degree in English from Tufts University and spends most of her “free time” writing about being a parent of a disabled child on WonderBaby.org or about the family’s musical adventures around Boston on BostonChildrensMusic.com. But really most of her time is spent caring for and playing with her little boy. info@bostonchildrensmusic.com.

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