how we began
In 2000, two sets of parents from the Quad Cities agreed that they wanted their children who had disabilities to have the same opportunities for fun and learning as typically developing children. They decided to start by offering a one week summer camp for children with disabilities, where they could enjoy a full camp experience.
The first year of Camp Hand in Hand was so successful, our co-founders knew they had created something really special for parents and participants. This special program is still going strong today.
In July 2018, Hand in Hand hosted camp for the 19th time, and over 60 campers attended.
What We Do
Over the last 19 years, our programs have expanded from one summer camp in July, to over 15 year round programs. We focus on creating fun, inclusive learning and recreational opportunities for children and young adults, which give their primary caregivers respite from their caregiving duties.
In addition to being fun, our programs also lead to some great outcomes for our participants, such as increased independence and social skills, improved mental health and self-esteem, and reaching health and fitness goals.
We firmly believe in supporting the well-being of the whole family by giving parents and primary caregivers respite from their caregiving duties. According to a recent survey of parents, 75% of parents/caregivers say their work or home life has improved since their child began attending Hand-in-Hand programs.
Meet Our Admin Team
Mark Smith, CEO
Kayla Hartz, Director of
Director of Recreation Programs
Molly Steil Rowland,
Coordinator of Waiver Services
Assistant Director of
Food & Facility Manager
Office Assistant &
Development & Marketing Director
Joan Clements, Bookkeeper
Board of Directors
John Byrne, President - Heather Hartley, Vice President - Ronda Meyer, Treasurer - Laura Wriedt, Secretary
Beth Beverlin - Meghan Corbin-Kiroff - Linda Delessio, M.D. - James Field - Tom Hosmanek - Doug Jasper
Angie Kendall - Kelly Kreiter-Penning - John Leinart - Chris Martin - Angie McCombs - John Nagle - Dan Oliver