About the Henry and Annette Gibson Tikvah Program

In response to the sudden news of the cancellation of Camp Living Wonders 2016 summer season, Ramah Darom is working with our community partners at Camp Living Wonders and the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta to fill some of the void created by this situation. We know many families have had their summer plans disrupted and are now scrambling to find Jewish camp alternatives for their children. We invite you to consider two wonderful opportunities for your child to experience the magic of Jewish summer camp at Camp Ramah Darom: our signature four-week Tikvah inclusion program or a new, 10-day “Taste of Tikvah” program created especially for Camp Living Wonders’ registrants. 

Families who have already paid tuition to Camp Living Wonders will receive full credit for those payments. We are also coordinating with local Jewish Federations to make sure that scholarships, grants, or financial assistance from Federations are seamlessly applied to Ramah Darom program fees. 

The Tikvah Program now offers both a 10-day and a four-week summer experience for children 12 to 17 years old diagnosed with Neurodevelopmental Disorders such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, Intellectual Disability and Communication Disorder. Dr. Audra Kaplan, program director, is a Clinical Psychologist with extensive experience in Jewish camp and in working with children with disabilities.

Click here to read Dr. Audra Kaplan’s latest BLOG post!

As part of Camp Ramah Darom (Ramah of the South), an award-winning ACA-accredited camp, Tikvah is designed to offer campers the additional staffing and support to experience the magic of Camp Ramah Darom. Ramah Darom’s Tikvah Program is the first program in the Southeast focused on providing a traditional, immersive, Jewish summer camping experience to Jewish teenagers with autism spectrum disorder. The program is fully integrated into a community that is steeped in Jewish celebration, learning, and ritual.

Campers who enroll in Tikvah will enjoy a unique, inclusive atmosphere of friendship and fun in a Jewish environment. Campers will participate in much-loved camp activities, such as sports, swimming, arts and crafts, boating, ropes course, and campfires, all within the warm environment of Camp Ramah Darom. Campers will benefit from meaningful formal and informal Jewish learning opportunities specifically designed to foster their emerging Jewish identity. Through individualized programming supported by highly-skilled staff, campers in the Tikvah program will build friendships, gain a sense of autonomy, develop independent living skills, learn problem-solving skills, have fun, and grow as members of the Ramah Darom community. Through engaging and innovative activities, the Tikvah program will inspire a passion for Jewish living, values and community while providing campers with a place where they feel being their authentic selves is encouraged and embraced. The Tikvah program will enhance the entire camp, enabling us to teach our campers by experience what it means to live in a truly inclusive Jewish community.

Tikvah campers will live in our new building designed with their special needs in mind. Small cabin groups will promote friendships and social skills.  Counselors will work with their cabin groups to provide active and fun activities that foster teamwork and collaboration.  The Tikveh program will provide significantly more support from counselors who have professional education and training in working with children with special needs.

Camp Ramah Darom is located in the North Georgia Mountains, just two hours north of Atlanta, and draws campers from 11 southern states, including Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and eastern Texas. The Tikvah program is open to children throughout the United States. Nestled on 122 beautiful acres of Appalachian Valley, crystal-clear mountain brooks feed our picturesque lake, and an inspiring 100-foot waterfall caps the view. The site is surrounded by more than 10,000 acres of wilderness and hiking trails in the adjacent Chattahoochee National Forest.

Dates & Tuition

Session A: June 14-July 11, 2016          Tuition: $5,575

Session B: July 13-Aug 8, 2016              Tuition: $5,575

Taste of Tikvah: July 17-July 26 (10-day program, ages 10-14)                                                                                                                           Tuition $1,900

Application Process

To register, applicants must complete the online application  as well as a Tikvah Intake Form and Teacher/Therapist Form and submit a tuition deposit. Once an application is received, the Tikvah Director will contacted families to schedule a camper interview.

Questions & Inquiries

Please contact Dr. Kaplan with any questions about Camp Ramah Darom’s Tikvah program at akaplan@ramahdarom.org.