A Look at Beaches Resorts’ Autism Program

Written by: Stephanie on April 01, 2024

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Beaches Resorts touts the Caribbean’s first autism-friendly kids camps, aligned with the Advanced Certified Autism Center (ACAC) and recognized by The International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). For families of children with special needs, including those with ASD, this means that a safe, inclusive, and fun vacation for all is within reach. 

A highly trained staff is proficient in sensory awareness, motor skills, autism overview, program development, social skills, communication, environment, emotional awareness, and bullying. In their company, infant children through teenagers can partake in resort activities and amenities of their choosing.  

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Before Travel 

A pre-travel questionnaire helps the staff to familiarize themselves with each child’s needs before arrival, allowing them to prepare for the child’s personalized care throughout their stay. This two-page document is submitted by the family before arrival at the resort and includes responses to many open-ended questions. 

A few topics included on the questionnaire include:  

  • Forms of communication 
  • Therapy models familiar to the child 
  • Social or visual cues 
  • Triggers for the child and how to calm them when they are upset 
  • Favorite activities and interests along with least favorite activities 
  • Dietary needs 
  • Swimming ability and comfort with water 
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At the Resort 

Beaches Resorts offer a wide variety of activities for children who participate in Beaches Kids Camp. Children with autism and other special needs are warmly welcomed and may participate as the family decides. 

Activities include:

  • Sesame Street STEM activities 
  • Talent shows 
  • Fashion shows 
  • Slumber parties, pool parties, glow parties 
  • Water-based play, including visits to the pool or beach
  • Fine motor skill fun 
  • Arts and crafts 

Through the Beaches Resorts and Sesame Street partnership, “Sesame Street and Autism: See Amazing in All Children,” kiddos have fun with familiar characters, including Julia, a four-year-old girl with autism and fan of both yellow and her stuffed bunny, Fluffster. 

For additional care, parents can make arrangements for a One-on-One “Beaches Buddy.” This service provides private care for a nominal fee. 

For further guidance, the Resort Sensory Guide for each property rates levels for touch, taste, sound, smell, sight at different events, restaurants, pools and whirlpools, activities, land and water sports, and quiet areas. 

Finally, families that need assistance with dietary needs will meet with the Culinary Concierge Desk, planning meals together. 

The Beaches Resorts Autism Program is ready to help all families have a welcoming, comfortable vacation. To learn more, check out this interview with Stacy at Beaches Ocho Rios (and meet a special guest!): 

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