• Children with Special Needs + Teen Mentors + Summer Camp Everyone Wins!
  • Because every child should enjoy all summer has to offer SummerAde
  • Helping families, teaching teens and building community Be a Hero

What is SummerAde?

SummerAde pairs high school volunteers with children with special needs to aid them during their week at a summer day camp.

SummerAde is a 501(c)3 non-profit sponsored by MarinLink

Effective December 2017

SummerAde Closing our Doors:
Farewell from our Staff

It has been a heartwarming success…seeing happy faces at summer camps for the last 10 years.  We have had such pride in our program and warm wishes from our community serving children with disabilities and providing community service opportunities for hundreds of local teens.

With the success and growth of SummerAde, comes the realization that our current organizational model is no longer sustainable.  Given our small infrastructure and staffing changes, we will not be able to provide the same level and quality of services that have benefitted so many families. Therefore, SummerAde will be closing our doors at the end of this calendar year.

We plan to continue our work, helping to ensure inclusion programs exist for children with special needs in our local summer camps.  We are planning to support the several camps that we worked with this past summer with leftover funds so that they may hire inclusion specialists and we will remain active with future camp staff trainings.  We will encourage students from local high schools to continue volunteering with this very special group of children and hope to set up liaisons between the high school community service leaders and camp organizers.  And, we plan to work closely with another not-for-profit organization with similar goals, Project Awareness and Special Sports (PAASS), which provides volunteer opportunities and camp experiences for children with special needs.  
Thank you again, from the bottom of our hearts for your past participation and support.  You have inspired us.  We hope to continue to make a difference in the lives of young people with special needs!

Tina Gabby, MD
Founder and Director

Jordana Perman
Community Liaison/Strategic Planning 
(Now in Portland)

Becky Bjursten
Administrative Coordinator

How it Works

Carefully screened teen volunteers serve as a mentor for a young child with special needs, helping them adjust to the schedule, navigate activities, facilitate social interactions and enjoy all the day camp has to offer.  Parents choose one of our partner camps and the week that works for you and we will individually pair your child with a qualified, trained teen mentor.

Teen Mentors

Come learn about the world of children with special needs and their families.  Volunteer to spend one or two weeks of your summer attending summer day camp with a child with special needs and reap the rewards of being part of something special.  Receive specialized training in working with these children who have mild to moderate developmental, behavioral or medical challenges.  Earn community service credit while giving back in a meaningful way.  Apply now!

Teen Mentor Page


Have you often wanted to send your child to a summer day camp but felt like they might need more assistance than the camp staff could offer?  SummerAde allows you to feel secure in sending your child with a teen mentor, screened and trained by professionals, to a camp that welcomes your special child. If your child has mild to moderate developmental, behavioral or medical challenges that could be accommodated by our program, please apply and let us help your child experience the joys of summer camp!

Parents of Campers Page


Thank you for your interest in incorporating SummerAde within your camp program!  Since 2008, SummerAde has paired high school volunteers with children with special needs at various day camps throughout Marin County.   We are delighted to help camps provide an inclusive environment benefiting all their campers, staff and community.  Feel free to contact us with questions.  Parents are encouraged to contact us to learn about which camps might be most appropriate for their child.

Camps Page


Uniformly heralded as a wonderful program for all, SummerAde has been in the press.  Read more about our history and intimate stories of special needs children often successfully attending camp for the first time.  See photos of our SummerAde participants in action.

Press & Photos

Don't Take Our Word For It

See what others are saying about us

  • I was taught by my camper, that many have it easier than others. I learned that I take my ability to walk for granted, and I should begin appreciating everything life has to offer more than I have in the past.

    Teen Mentor SummerAde Teen Mentor 2016
  • Our Teen Mentor was able to cull an immediate connection with my daughter by engaging her in a genuine manner and treating her with respect.  She showed an abundance of patience and flexibility as well as physical stamina to keep up with my daughter during those long hot days.  This couldn’t have made me feel more at ease. 
    I applaud SummerAde for their commitment to finding, training and sharing these amazing young adults with us!  What these experiences and connections bring to ALL involved is beyond measure and will only go towards making this a better community/world for people of all abilities!
    Mother SummerAde camper, 2014
  • SummerAde has been an incredible resource for our two Edventure More camps, Camp Edmo and Camp EdTech. Thanks to SummerAde we’ve been able to easily integrate children with special needs into our camps. The volunteers are exceptional. They are so attentive, responsible and have obviously been well recruited and trained. The program has helped us foster an inclusive environment and increase the social/emotional development of all our campers. It’s a true gift to these kids, their families and to our entire camp. An inspirational program!

    Eduardo Caballero Executive Director and Co-Founder of Edventure More

SummerAde Supporters

SummerAde offers all of it’s services free of charge and will continue to do so because of it’s amazing supporters. We are grateful for your support now and in the future.

Individual Donors

Chris & Rosemary Barlow + Tani Girton + Ann Parker
Ari Baron + Anne Glassey + Stephanie Pass
Joan Berman + Mary Glassey + Kathleen Peters
Stacy & Nancy Bloom + Liz Graceffo + Dana Pond
Brian Frumkin + Bartley Green + Cathryn Ramin
Shelby & Tracy Brock + Adam Harband + Kristi Raube
Elizabeth Brown + John Hitchman + Ann Riley
Lisa Capretta + Kelly Huff + Kimberly Rodriguez
Mary Carris + Horowitz Jung + Grace Roegiers
Susan Shane & Charles MacLean + Sue Kalman + Ann & Francis Rogers
Lucy Crain MD + Kim Kieckhefer + Kyla Rossi
Mary Cullen + Ellen Krantz Weiss + Peter & Evelyn Sayers
Pamela Dinkelspiel + Laura & Sophia Landress + John Selix
Karen Dunn + Jennette Leal + Michael Shiffman
Judith Epstein + Bogardus Lemberg + Alice Shiffman
Elizabeth Ericson + Sharon Lichtenstein + Amy Smith
Vickie Feldstein + Christopher Lind-White MD + Joe Smith
Cindy Fenner + Gary Caine & Lori Feldman + Charles Spyropoulos
Seth & Alison Ferguson + Daphne Marneffe + Leta Stathacos
Tracy Ferm + Roxanne & David May + Janeen Swan
Jennifer Forman + Kyri & Aaron McClellan + Mark Swoiskin
Louise Frumkin + Daniel Moynihan + Helen Tombropoloulos
Harold Gabby + Vickie Feldstein & Nate Orwig + Annette Venables
Tina Gabby + Mackell O’Brien + Edward Williams
Janet Gilmore + Robin O’Heeron + Clara Zooney

Business Sponsors

+ Bank of America
+ Bon Air Association
+ Carlson Orthodontics
+ Comforts
+ County of Marin Community Service Fund
+ Computer Courage
+ Dore Selix Fund at SF Foundation
+ Dore Selix Fund at Jewish Community Federation
+ Iron Springs
+ Lion’s Club of Corte Madera
+ MV Rotary Service Fund at MCF
+ Marin Charitable
+ Mt. Tam Racquet Club
+ My Italian Décor
+ Orange Ball Open
+ Pacific Catch
+ Patxi’s Pizza
+ Planet Granite
+ Point Richmond R&D Assoc.
+ ResorTime
+ Rotary Club of Mill Valley
+ Woodland Sponsors