1-Day Virtual CommuniCamp™ Program: From Our Home to Yours–Bringing CommuniCamp™ to Your Living Room!
Due to demand, we are excited to offer a One Full Day (7 hours!) Virtual CommuniCamp™ Program for children (and their families!) between the ages of 4 and 17. Exceptions can be made for some 18 and 19 year olds. (Enrollment process & pricing included at the bottom of this webpage.)
1-Day Virtual CommuniCamp™ for Children Ages 4-10:
- Tuesday, August 4th | 10am-5pm ET – Apply here!
1-Day Virtual CommuniCamp™ for Tweens/Teens Ages 11-17 (also accepting applications for 18 and 19 year olds. Continue scrolling for specific info about the tween/teen program and click here for FAQs):
- Wednesday, August 5th | 10am-5pm ET – Apply here!
The SMart Center, under the direction of Selective Mutism pioneer, Dr. Elisa Shipon-Blum, has been treating children, tweens/teens, and adults with SM for over 25 years using S-CAT®, an evidenced-based treatment focusing on the whole person and a CBT, family systems approach.
This 1-Day Program is modeled after our successful in-person CommuniCamp™ but done virtually. The CommuniCamp™ experience allows children to learn skills for home, the real world, and school–in a classroom or while distance learning. In addition, parents receive education and training to support their child.
Our Virtual CommuniCamp™ is popular since families can receive treatment, meet others who understand, and learn as if they are in-person at our Center! No travel involved. Virtual CommuniCamp™, like our individual telehealth treatment programs are done in the comfort of a child/teen’s home which has proven to be a strong advantage for them (and their parents). Using a virtual platform, we practice ALL the same skills and have mock social settings with unique and ultra fun virtual backgrounds! These backgrounds help the child visualize the setting and practice skills. This has carried over well into real world/school social settings and is a favorite amongst our families!
Our 7-hour program is unmatched! It is an intensive group treatment and support program for our children/teens/parents where we provide parents with education and support throughout. There will be breakout treatment sessions with clinical counselors and separate support/connection luncheons for parents and campers. In addition to therapeutic, evidence-based strategies, CommuniCamp™ and the S-CAT® program exclusively used in SMart Center Programs, is known for the tremendous amount of support that both parents and campers receive before, during, and after the program. Our 1-Day Virtual CommuniCamp™ program is no different! Included in the price of the program, families receive:
- Multiple relevant handouts and webinars to supplement your CommuniCamp™ experience to take home and to be shared with the school/teachers/relatives/friends.
- A one-on-one support call with the camper’s counselor to discuss what strategies worked best with your child during the day.
- Receipts with CPT codes to submit to insurance
- A confirmation of diagnosis letter
- Recommendations for continued support: Individualized Follow-Up Sessions in-person or web-conference, School Consultations via web-conference, attend CommuniCamp™ again
- A support system of professionals and peers you (and your child) can relate to and keep in touch with after the program.
- A metaphorical tool belt equipped with skills, strategies, and mechanisms for overcoming Selective Mutism.
To learn about the enrollment process & pricing, see below:
Virtual CommuniCamp™ Process & Pricing
This is one of many unique aspects of CommuniCamp™. This is how we are able to accept new patients directly into group treatment!
Complete the application for the program you wish to attend. The application(s) are listed on this webpage. Dr. Elisa Shipon-Blum will perform a detailed review and assessment of the application to determine if applicant is eligible for group treatment prior to being involved in our Individualized Intensive Treatment Program. The application also allows to start to uncover the child’s/teen’s unique needs so that we can utilize the appropriate S-CAT® strategies with respect to his/her baseline. Our globally successful, evidence-based treatment approach, Social Communication Anxiety Treatment® (SCAT®), is grounded in the understanding that Selective Mutism is more than just not speaking in social settings. A major component of S-CAT® is understanding that every child/teen is different and therefore an individualized treatment plan needs to be developed that incorporates home (parent education, environmental changes), the child’s/teen’s unique needs, and school modifications (teacher education, accommodations/interventions). Your loved one with Selective Mutism and Social Anxiety developed SM and remains “stuck” from one or more contributing factors. After a clinical assessment of your application, you will be notified of your status within 2-3 business days. Since established SMart Center patients have already completed the initial interviews and assessments, they are eligible to submit the application at no cost by using the coupon code: SMartPatient
*There is a $75 application review fee. Your loved one does not need to have an official diagnosis to attend. Because this program emphasizes intensive, individualized treatment in small groups, the program has a limited capacity and spots are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Therefore, applicants may be placed on a wait-list if all spots are filled at the time of application submission. As openings become available, applicants will be notified and the application fee will be requested. At this point, the following steps will occur as usual.
CommuniCamp™ uses the S-CAT® model in a small group setting. After your application is thoroughly reviewed, you will be eligible for one of a few “Pre-Camp Meeting” options (in-person or virtual dependent on clinical recommendation based on application) with one of our clinicians to deepen our understanding of your child’s unique social communication needs so that we can determine ideal group placement and identify and plan for the proper treatment strategies to utilize during CommuniCamp™. This will help foster a comfortable, fun, and therapeutic weekend. There is a minimum fee of $300 for this step; however, based on clinical recommendation after review of your application, Dr. Shipon-Blum might recommend individualized treatment prior to attending the program. More detailed information and pricing will be sent upon application acceptance.
After your meeting is completed and your CommuniCamp™ acceptance is confirmed, we will create your child’s unique experience to help him/her build social and communication comfort in a given setting or with an individual. Before, during, and after the program, purposeful, specific strategies are used to help ease each child’s specific anxieties, which will foster social comfort in a school-like setting and hence, communication.
*This step is waived for SMart Center families who’ve been seen within 6 months to 1 year. Upon acceptance of application, the meeting may or may not be necessary pending clinician determination.
During CommuniCamp™ parents will meet with Dr. Elisa Shipon-Blum and our clinical staff for educational and support sessions. Parents will receive hands-on training and learn proven treatment strategies with goal charts, opportunities to ask questions, as well as time to connect with other parents. There will be 7 hours of intensive treatment, training, and fun games and activities to foster social comfort, confidence, and progression of communication. Campers work directly with their counselors and clinicians in their small groups or paired with buddies, as well as participate in pull-out sessions with our clinicians.
After the event, parents will receive:
- Recommendations for next steps
- Relevant handouts to supplement their CommuniCamp™ experience to take home and share with the school
- Charted goals
- A check-in call with the camper’s counselor
- Eligibility for individualized, monthly follow-up (we consult with out-of-state families via web-conferencing)
Once a family attends CommuniCamp™, they are considered part of the SMart Center Family and are officially established SMart Center patients. They are therefore eligible to participate in individual treatment, receive school-based services, etc. Services include psychoeducational, neurodevelopmental, and speech and language testing. Learn more about our services by clicking here. Families are also eligible to attend a future CommuniCamp™ with no application fee and no meeting step/fee.
Step 1, Application: $75.00 (non-refundable)
*The application fee is waived for established patients as they’ve already been reviewed and assessed with the SMart Center.
Step 2, Meeting: Varies dependent on meeting type and clinician, $300.00 at minimum; however, individualized treatment might be recommended at this step with fees varying in range based (A non-refundable scheduling deposit will be due at time of scheduling).
**The meeting is waived for SMart Center families who’ve been seen within 6 months to one year. This step may or may not be necessary pending clinician determination for established patients.
CommuniCamp™ Program, $750.00
- SMart Center Financial Assistance Program – Click here to learn more and apply for possible sliding fee scale.
Treating Tweens/Teens with Selective Mutism
Tweens/teens with SM and/or social anxiety have most likely been suffering in silence for many years. Their behaviors are ingrained. Many are now more resistant, are more socially avoidant and lack skills such as initiation, elaborate speech, conversation starters, making/keeping friends. As a result, self-esteem is usually affected, they may not be reaching their potential and there may be a strong dependence on parents (and siblings). Some may suffer from increased anxiety and depression.
However, this is HOPE. Tweens/teens can not only overcome SM, but can thrive, reach their potential, and become confident social communicators.
The dates for the Tweens/Teens 1-Day Virtual CommuniCamp™ Program are July 29th and August 5th. Apply here.