To Our Oak Hill Camps and Recreation Community,

It’s been a little while since we checked in with you. Last we wrote, we shared some heavy news regarding our programming in Summer 2023. As you may know, we were not able to open for traditional residential camp at Camp Hemlocks last summer due to a lack of available staff. This was a difficult reality to cope with. We shared with you then that it was our hope and intention to bring camp back for Summer 2024.

A lot has happened over the past year. First, the Hemlocks Center became the proud recipient of a federal grant to upgrade our beloved center and expand its mission. The Hemlocks Center will be undergoing construction in an effort to modernize the amenities and provide services to more individuals with disabilities. We will be closed through Summer 2024 as we complete these much-needed renovations.  

Second, we are pleased to welcome two new members of our team!

Taylor Bernardo has joined us as our Camp Director. She can be reached Taylor.Bernardo@oakhillct.org.

Hannah Fiducia has also joined us as Assistant Camp Manager. She can be reached at Hannah.Fiducia@oakhillct.org.

Finally, in this competitive job market, it remains difficult to recruit the necessary staff to ensure a safe and happy camp experience for all. With that in mind, we are pleased to announce that we will be moving forward with residential camp at Camp Harkness in Waterford this summer! Due to limited staffing, we will only be accepting applicants from within our Oak Hill Community Programs and through the Connecticut Bureau of Rehabilitation Services (BRS) Level Up program.

We realize this programming adjustment might be frustrating and confusing to many of our long-time campers and their families. Please know that our goal is to open the camp experience up to the public again soon. We are optimistic that the renovations at Camp Hemlocks will provide for an inclusive, supportive environment for all individuals with disabilities for many years to come. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at Nicole.Feeney@oakhillct.org.

Camp Harkness

Camp Harkness provides a week-long overnight summer camp for adults or children with disabilities.

Our camp is a fun and safe place for campers with similar needs, activity interests and social interests, to come together. Our trained staff will provide a supportive environment where our campers have opportunities to:

  • Experience new leisure activities or enhance skills in areas in which you already feel successful
  • Develop a positive and confident self image
  • Make new friends or get together with old friends
  • Build enduring friendships and a lasting network of support
  • Participate in guided activities designed to enhance leadership, self-advocacy, and team building skills.
  • Gain independence

At Camp Harkness we strive, above all, to provide a fun and positive environment where our campers feel accepted and successful.

Want to learn more about either camp? Contact Us:

Taylor Bernardo, Camp Director

Taylor.Bernardo@oakhillct.org