Educational activities during the summer are critical to helping at-risk youth reinforce their learning while avoiding risky behaviors. Students from high poverty backgrounds are least likely to spend their summers participating in learning and enrichment activities, causing them to fall even further behind their peers.
Intensive summer schools and camps target students who are most at-risk of dropping out, increasing their potential to graduate from primary school and become lifelong learners. The four-week, half-day program emphasizes literacy and math skills development and promotes critical thinking. In addition to academic classes, students participate in a variety of enrichment activities including art, sports, swimming, music, and life skills. The summer school and camp is also designed as an intensive teacher training experience for local public school teachers. Selected teachers co-teach with experienced professional development coaches, who model new instructional and classroom management strategies and help facilitate student-centered learning environments. This model enables public school teachers to ultimately improve their instruction, increasing student learning throughout the school year.
Primary school children and youth increase their potential for academic success and personal growth.
- Public school teachers engage in practices that lead to increased student growth and achievement.
- Students improve reading, math, and critical thinking abilities.
- Students develop life skills that lead to healthy decisions and personal development.
Guzmán Ariza Summer School & Camp
Our original summer school and camp in Cabarete was started in 2005 and has been partially funded since then by the Dominican Law Firm Guzmán Ariza. Subsequently, DREAM has expanded to five separate camp sites. This site is the largest, serving 210 students, and is staffed by a cross-cultural team that includes 2 directors, 14 local and international volunteers, 12 Dominican public school teachers, and 2 professional development coaches. The Cabarete summer school and camp is sponsored by Guzmán Ariza & Associates and by international volunteers.
La Ciénaga Summer School & Camp
The summer school and camp in La Ciénega (a neighborhood in Cabarete) takes place at the Salome Ureña Public School. This camp is modeled after the Guzmán Ariza program and is our second largest site. The camp serves 175 students and is staffed by a cross-cultural team of 2 directors, 10 local and international volunteers, 10 Dominican public school teachers, and 2 professional development coaches. The La Ciénaga Summer School & Camp is currently seeking sponsorship.
Abreu Summer School & Camp
The summer school and camp in Abreu is an extension of our Young Stars and Public Library programs in the Máximo Acosta Public School. This half-day program was launched in 2011 by one of DREAM’s Peace Corps Volunteers. This site serves 60 students and is staffed by 1 local director, 6 local and international volunteers, and 4 Dominican public school teachers. The Abreu Summer School and Camp is currently seeking sponsorship.
La Unión Summer School & Camp
The summer school and camp in La Unión started in 2013 thanks to the leadership of two DREAM Peace Corps Volunteers and two of DREAM’s yearlong volunteers. The summer camp was the first step in a long-term partnership with the school’s director, initiating a yearlong educational intervention program. The half-day camp and teacher training program serves 55 students and is staffed by 2 directors, 4 international and local volunteers, and 6 Dominican public school teachers. The La Unión Summer School and Camp is currently seeking sponsorship.
DREAM Mini Summer Schools & Camps
DREAM has worked in close collaboration with a number of student group partners since 2011, offering mini summer schools and camps to new communities throughout the country. Our partners have been ISV (International Student Volunteers), BAA (Boston Arts Academy) and Washtenaw High School. If you are interested in launching a DREAM Mini Camp, please click here.