*Camp Encourage's offices are located in Kansas City, MO, but camp sessions are held at Tall Oaks. Please send any written communication to our offices in Westport at 4025 Central, KCMO, 64111.

We appreciate your interest and encourage you to read through each detail below. After doing so and to express interest in attending our camps, contact us at For more information about the overall camp experience, activities, and services, click here.

IMPORTANT NOTE FOR 2021: Due to the pandemic and the limited number of slots available, we will likely be holding a lottery. Priority will be given to those that applied in 2020 and were unable to attend due to the cancellations of camps. For further information regarding the lingering pandemic, visit our COVID Updates webpage.

As of April 13, 2021: We have the following slots available for male peer model campers: June session: ages 14-18; July session: ages 17-18; September session: ages 12-18; and October session: ages 12-18.


We're counting down the days! 

March 19, 2022
Day Camp Session

Arrival: Saturday morning (TBD)

Departure: Saturday evening (TBD)

June 15-18, 2022
Summer Camp Session

Arrival: Tuesday, 1:00pm

Departure: Saturday, between 10:00 and 11:00, depending on assigned group

July 20-23, 2022
Summer Camp Session

Arrival: Tuesday, 1:00pm

Departure: Saturday, between 10:00 and 11:00, depending on assigned group

October 15-16, 2022
Overnight Camp Session

Arrival: Saturday morning (TBD)

Departure: Sunday afternoon (TBD)


Peer Model Campers have an extremely important role at Camp Encourage. Not only do they enhance the lives of other children, they also walk away with new perspectives, enjoyable stories, new friends, and lifelong memories.

Peer Model Campers participate in Camp Encourage like all other campers. They reside in the cabins overnight with the campers with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), participate in all camp activities, and are expected to serve as role models for the campers with ASD.

Peer Model Campers are not incorporated as “Junior Counselors” or helpers. Each is to interact with all campers, enhancing each child’s experience at camp and is NOT to isolate him or herself from the campers with ASD.


Our primary focus for growth for each Peer Model Camper is:

  • increasing each individual's knowledge, understanding, and acceptance of autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • increasing each individual's appreciation of individual differences

Additionally, just as with our campers with ASD, it is our hope that following the overnight camp experience, our peer model campers:

  • increase skills of independence
  • enhance self-esteem
  • increase personal self-understanding and acceptance
  • gain a widening awareness of recreation opportunities and skills of recreation
  • make new friends


Any female or male, not on the autism spectrum, between the age of eight and eighteen may apply. Because Camp Encourage targets social and behavioral deficits often paired with autism spectrum disorder, peers selected need to demonstrate developmentally appropriate social and behavioral skills. Further, applicants must possess patience and kindness, demonstrate acceptance, and be understanding of differences.

If you are uncertain if this experience would be fitting, please contact us before submitting a Peer Model Camper Application.


Each fee covers the cost of preparation, training, activities, meals, and lodging. Compared to other quality camps with similar activities, our research indicates that this tuition is reasonable (and quite a deal).

Summer Sessions (Four-Day, Three Nights): $400

Overnight (Two-Day, One-Night) Camp Sessions: $185

Day Camp: $75


In addition to offering this camp experience at a low rate, we provide a small amount of partial scholarship funding to peer model campers. Because we are trying to support as many campers with autism as feasible, scholarship funding for peer model campers will be quite limited.

If a scholarship is needed for a peer model camper to attend, there is a chance that the applicant's needs will be considered if: 1) he or she has a parent volunteering at Camp Encourage and/or 2) if Camp Encourage is able to secure additional scholarship funding through donor support. Full scholarships will not be available.

Many fundraising opportunities are available for peer model campers to raise funds to go directly toward his or her tuition costs. Payment plans can be made as well. If seeking scholarship funding, the request can be made when completing the Peer Model Application.