Programs That Empower

We offer a diverse range of programs throughout the year that allow children with

chronic health conditions to renew their spirits in a positive peer community.

The Importance of Play

Young people need to have opportunities to be engaged in interactive play, through which they learn to interact with others and feel a sense of belonging. They feel empowered in a safe and supportive community that allows them to learn new skills, and to explore their values and beliefs. These opportunities help shape their thinking and attitudes.

Positive experiences away from home will help them build confidence and self-esteem. Our participants will be able to apply their learning in their home communities with the belief that they are capable to influence their own future in a positive way.

Our youth and teen programs serve children with a variety of chronic medical conditions, and their families. Medical conditions include (but are not limited to): asthma, autoimmune disorders, diabetes, epilepsy, heart defects, hemophilia, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, severe allergies and skin conditions.

Youth Programs (Ages 6- 13)

Monthly Programs

One Saturday each month, we offer diverse program days to unite our community and provide opportunities for play, discovery and bonding. Program days are generally held between 9am and 4pm at different venues in the NH Seacoast region.

View our Program Flyer

Overnight Retreats

In the Spring and Fall, we offer an overnight extension of our monthly programs for our oldest youth campers (ages 10-13). These experiences give campers a chance to further bond as a group, gain a sense of independence and give parents additional respite time.

Summer Day Camps

Currently we offer two sessions of a 1-week day camp in the NH Seacoast region. Day programs run generally between 8:45am and 4:15pm.

Summer 2018 Dates: TBD

Summer Program Flyer.

Teen Programs (Ages 13- 17)

Quarterly Teen Programs for ages 13-15 have been added in 2015 to provide an opportunity for teens to extend their connections in our supportive peer community. We alternate day programs with weekend camp programs throughout the year. Contact us if you are interested and we will add you to the Teen mailing list for updates.

View Our Teen Program Flyer.

Leader In Training (LIT) opportunities for ages 15-17 are currently available for campers who have been involved in our program for multiple years. LIT’s can relate to our younger campers and serve as a role model in our youth programs. They assist with program activities, engaging campers and bringing positive energy. A formal LIT program will be in added in the near future.

Specialty & Family Programs

Camp Spinnaker – Youth with Asthma 

  • August 19-24, 2018
  • A one week overnight camp program for youth ages 8-12
  • Onsite support and oversight by our medical staff team
  • Location: AYF’s Camp Merrowvista in Center Tuftonboro

For more information about Camp Spinnaker, click here.

Camp Blue Sky Families – Down syndrome – April 7-8, 2018 

  • April 7-8, 2018
  • A weekend retreat launched in 2011 to provide families who have a child with Down syndrome a supportive community
  • Location: AYF’s Camp Merrowvista (our program partner)
  • View Our Camp Blue Sky 2018 Flyer

Heart Family Camp – Congenital Heart Defect – April 20-22, 2018

  • A new weekend retreat launched in April 2016, to provide a supportive community for families of children (ages 2-12) with a congenital heart defect
  • Program partner: It’s My Heart New England Chapter
  • View our Heart Camp Flyer 

CLOVES Family Camp – July 13-15, 2018

  • NEW weekend retreat for people with CLOVES and their families to provide a supportive community for families of children
  • Program partner: CLOVES Syndrome Community

General Admission Guidelines

Our goal is to empower as many participants as possible, help them to pursue their goals and to realize their full potential within our program objectives, staffing model and resources.

To ensure the safety and well being of all participants, our general admission guidelines include that participants must be able to:

  • Shower, toilet, dress and feed themselves independently and with minimal supervision
  • Walk 150 yards unassisted and without extreme fatigue – the use of a wheelchair to aid in transitions may be considered
  • Verbally communicate their needs with our staff
  • Participate in group activities supervised at a 1:8 staff to camper ratio level
  • Have a completed Medical Provider Form indicating the appropriate activity level for participation


Each child is unique but they also have a lot in common and can relate to each other because of their conditions. On their own, they often stand out in their communities because of their perceived limitations or needs. However, in our community, we find strength in numbers and feel empowered. The Zebra Crossings team is devoted to furthering this mission.

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