Empowering People With Disabilities Through Recreation

Oak Hill Camps & Recreation provides opportunities for people with disabilities to have fun, try new activities, explore their interests, and spend time with friends in an accessible environment. We believe that people with disabilities have the right and capability to participate in recreation and leisure. Building from that belief, our goal is to develop a variety of safe and engaging programs.

Our Vision for People with Disabilities

Oak Hill Camps & Recreation’s vision is that people with disabilities will be able to achieve their full potential, engage in their community and meaningful relationships, and fulfill their social, emotional, and recreational needs.

Our Vision

Oak Hill Camps & Recreation will become and will be recognized as Connecticut’s go-to resource and partner for providing high quality, individualized, culturally responsive recreation for people with disabilities.

Our Mission

Oak Hill Camps & Recreation sets the standard, partnering with people with disabilities, to provide recreation promoting independence, fun, and dignity.

Our Core Values

  • Safety: The safety of our participants is always our top priority.
  • Responsibility & Professionalism: We reliably provide programming with high quality effort, professionalism, and accountability.
  • Diversity, Kindness, & Respect: We honor the unique needs, skills, perspectives, identities, and cultural backgrounds of our participants, staff members, and community members.
  • Flexibility, Creativity, & Optimism: We inspire fun, generate motivation, meet our participants where they are, and have a willingness to learn and grow.
  • Communication & Teamwork: We value clear and respectful communication, individual communication styles, assistive technology, and working together to achieve our goals.

While services can be delivered in areas across the state, we primarily serve individuals with disabilities at either of our locations: Camp Harkness (Waterford, CT) and Camp Hemlocks (Hebron, CT).

  • Camp Harkness
    • Camp Harkness is located in Waterford, Connecticut on the state-owned property of Harkness Park featuring beach access and beautifully manicured grounds. The park has a dedicated area for campers that is restricted to the public and park pass holders. Oak Hill is one of four agencies that operate overnight camps at Harkness Park. This allows for more a more intimate experience or larger social group interaction between camps if desired! And offers incredibly accessible amenities for individuals with disabilities.
  • Camp Hemlocks
    • Camp Hemlocks is located in the scenic woods of Hebron, Connecticut. New to Oak Hill in 2015, renovations began quickly, restoring this beloved community treasure after being closed for several years. There was little hope of Camp Hemlocks reopening when Hebron resident and Oak Hill president, Barry Simon intervened and brought the magic back to the facility and those it serves. Since that time, thousands of campers have enjoyed the unique experience and accessible grounds that is Camp Hemlocks!

Proud Affiliate

We are the proud affiliate of Easterseals. For 100 years, Easterseals has served as an indispensable resource for individuals with disabilities, veterans, seniors, and their families. Easterseals affiliates in communities nationwide serve 1.5M people through high-quality programs including autism services, early intervention, workforce development, adult day care and more high-quality programs including autism services, early intervention, workforce development, adult day care and more.

Connect with Us

Please take some time to explore our innovative services and let us know if you are interested in connecting further.

Taylor Bernardo, Director of Camps and Recreation


Oak Hill is very active on social media providing a great deal of resources and updates regarding our special events and services including that of our Camps & Recreation Program. We would love to connect with you on Instagram: @oakhillct