Summer Happenings At The Help Group

So much is happening at The Help Group this summer!

Our Kids Like Me summer camp program is already in full swing. Kids Like Me camps provide a safe and enriching environment for young people with autism and other special needs. Kids Like Me has welcomed both new and returning campers to the Sherman Oaks and Culver City campuses this summer.

Last month, Kids Like Me took a trip to Scooter’s Jungle in Valencia – an indoor play area that features an obstacle course, an indoor slide, ping pong, air hockey, and so many more fun amenities. Campers, joined by staff chaperones, also visited the historic El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood to see the Disney Pixar movie Incredibles 2.

Through the Kids Like Me Teens-On-The-Go program, teen campers visited the Universal Studios Theme Park, The Los Angeles Zoo, and took horseback riding lessons.  And, The Help Group’s Passport LA program’s young adults took trips to the LBC Aquarium and the Mulligan Family Fun Center.

Fun events also took place at The Help Group! Reptacular Animals – a traveling reptile zoo – visited both the Sherman Oaks and Culver City campuses with an array of reptiles such as lizards and snakes. The campers were filled with awe and curiosity as they saw, and interacted with, each creature first-hand. Both campers and staff celebrated the end of the first session of Kids Like Me camp with a carnival party that featured interactive games, a popcorn machine, waterslides, and more.

“Kids Like Me camps create a sense of both structure and fun that is so vital for kids and their families during the summer months, and helps campers with essential social development,” said Nicole Webb, Program Coordinator, Kids Like Me Camps at The Help Group.

Summer school is currently in session at each of The Help Group’s school campuses.  The Help Group’s summer school programs give students a structured environment for continual learning and peer interaction wherein students can embark on fun and informative projects.

For example, The Help Group’s Sunrise School has an “Around The World” theme this session. The first week of school focused on the country of Greenland, and students created their version of “Northern Lights” with glow-in-the-dark balloons in a darkroom. The Help Group’s STEM³ Academy’s summer school program features weekly themes such as Cybersecurity, Cryptography, Game Design and Robotics.  And, at The Help Group’s Village Glen School, students are participating in an engineering challenge that requires them to use jet propulsion and pressure systems to design water rockets from scratch using raw materials and a 3D printer.

“Summer school is a very important part of the Village Glen program,” said Debbie Lazer, Head of School at Village Glen School at The Help Group. “Our students’ unique needs are such that most of them require the reinforcement of instruction on an ongoing basis to foster retention and to enable a smooth transition to the next grade level.  Students are working both collaboratively and individually to solve problems and to enrich their understanding of the practical relationships between their classroom and the real world.”


  1. (L-R) Mona Qiao (TA), Cecilia Gallo (TA), Elizabeth McBrearty (Camp Supervisor), Janneth Martinez (TA), Nicole Webb, Zeyda Martinez (KLM Program Assistant), and Beverly Kramer (TA)
  2. Village Glen School Teacher Helping Student