YMCA Community Services supports youth and adults with special needs with social interaction opportunities, friendships, and skill building.

The YMCA Inclusion Program is designed to provide children with the opportunity to learn social skills, independent living skills and manage their own behaviors at the after school program in which they are enrolled. Our positive and supportive approach focuses on behavior management and play, social, and self-care skills development all while fostering the opportunity for success.

Inclusion services are provided to children between the ages of 3 and 17 attending preschools, summer camps, childcare, after school or recreational programs throughout Orange County. We focus on teaching and developing play, social, and self-care skills, managing behavioral challenges, and building confidence and independence through the use of positive reinforcement, behavioral interventions and other support strategies. Each child in our program is provided with an individualized Inclusion Plan, detailing their specific inclusion goals to monitor and facilitate their progress. Our Inclusion Facilitators collect data on these goals while facilitating the child’s engagement and inclusion in his or her childcare program.

Inclusion can be utilized for all children with special needs and/or challenging behaviors. We provide services to children with but not limited to developmental and learning disabilities, sensory challenges, epilepsy, autism, ADHD, emotional disturbance, as well as assist with self-care (diapering, feeding, etc.) if needed.

Possible Indicators (not limited to) for one-on-one Inclusion services:
• Elopement (wandering tendencies)
• Lacks personal safety or sense of boundaries
• Self-Injurious Behavior
• Harmful behaviors towards participants or staff
• Self-Care Needs beyond occasional
• Non-Communicative
• Tantrums or emotional “meltdowns”
• Sensory or social integration challenges.

Our Service Areas

Our service area includes all cities within Orange County. Inclusion provides service as a third party at the group child care provider or community program site based on the child care or community program’s permission. Our services are utilized at YMCA child care sites, private preschools, Boys & Girls Clubs, school district child care programs, community and city recreational programs, etc. It is the responsibility of each parent to discuss utilizing Inclusion services with the child care or community program provider.

Inclusion fees are separate from any fees paid to the childcare or summer camp program provider and are the responsibility of the parent or guardian. Y Inclusion is a vendor with the Regional Center of Orange County, and current consumers with the Regional Center of Orange County may qualify for full funding through the Regional Center. Payment is also accepted through other third party agencies as applicable. Families who are not consumers with the Regional Center or do not qualify for Inclusion services through the Regional Center may pay privately for services. Financial assistance is available for families who qualify.

Inclusion accepts new enrollments on a year-round basis. Please submit the contact form and a YMCA Inclusion representative will reach out to you as soon as possible.

For immediate inquiries, please call us at (714)508-7624.

  • Please select your child's school. If services at your selected school are not available, we will notify you of the nearest available locations.
  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • Date Format: MM slash DD slash YYYY
  • Briefly tell us your family's needs so we can best assist you.

Inclusion staff at all levels work in direct partnership with the parents and families of children in our program to facilitate their inclusion and success within their childcare programs. Effective collaboration and communication with parents and families is key to providing consistency and high quality support. Parents and families are actively involved in the development of a child’s individualized Inclusion Plan and regularly updated on the child’s progress in the Inclusion Program. Inclusion staff welcome the opportunity to assist and support parents and families in supporting their child’s success in settings and environments outside of the childcare program, including the home and classroom. Inclusion staff work to connect parents and families to valuable resources that may prove helpful to the child or family, including respite care, childcare options, Regional Center consumer services, and other supports or resources within the community.


In addition to 1:1 services, Inclusion also provides consultation services to childcare, preschool and recreational program staff to assist with the success of an individual child within their program. At times, childcare and recreational program staff may struggle to effectively support a child with special needs in the program. Such struggles may involve behavioral challenges, including tantrums, aggression, and elopement, social skills difficulties, or curriculum or environment inclusion or adaptation.

A trained Senior Inclusion Facilitator or Program Director would consult directly with the childcare or recreational program staff and the child’s parents to determine the current challenges and receive intake information. The Inclusion consultant would then conduct an in-person observation and develop an individualized intervention plan, providing recommendations for behavioral interventions and proactive strategies. Follow up visits or consultations may be provided on as needed basis. The cost of a consultation through Y Inclusion is $175. Please inquire directly with the Inclusion Office if interested.


Inclusion also provides group training’s to childcare, preschool and recreational program staff to develop or expand their knowledge in how to teach, support, and assist children with special needs. Training’s can be conducted on-site if needed and are led by a Senior Inclusion Facilitator or Program Director. Training topics include Guiding Children with Special Needs, Behavior Management, Positive Reinforcement and other specialized topics. Other topics may be offered upon request. Depending upon the topic, training’s range from 1 – 2 hours and also include a question and answer portion and a copy of the training curriculum. Training’s cost $100 per hour. Please inquire directly with the Inclusion Office if interested.

Developmental Screening

To ensure children are on track with their growth, their parents- or guardian- should obtain developmental screenings that are performed by a medical care provider at the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended ages of 9, 18, and 24 or 30 months of age.

Parents who want to go beyond what their child’s medical care provider offers can complete a free developmental screening on their own at OnTrackOC.org. The screenings can be filled out online for children who are one month old up to 5.5 years of age and it only takes a few minutes to complete.

See why the Y was the place for Andre and his family.

New Horizons is a program for adults with developmental disabilities and special needs ages 18 and up. The New Horizons program provides safe and supervised recreational outings in the community that offer social interaction, skill building, and life-long friendships. While participants are having fun, their full-time caregivers are provided with the “time-off” they need to better care for their loved ones.

We are currently accepting new participants to join us for weekly online social hours and activities. If you are interested in joining the fun, please contact Lan Le at (714)508-7635.

The YMCA New Horizons Program Provides:

  • Meaningful & constructive leisure activities for developmentally disabled adolescents & adults
  • Opportunities for fun, independence and normalization
  • Break time for parents/family/caregivers
  • A place to make new friends, experience new things, see new places, and have fun
  • Opportunities to develop social, motor, language, camping, travel, and group sharing skills

Days: Monday – Saturday
Times: 9:30am – 3:30pm
Location:  Santa Ana Family YMCA, 2100 W Alton Ave, Santa Ana CA
Cost: 6 RCOC Hours /$132 private pay

Guidelines for Attending a New Horizons Event/Outing

1. Update the Liability wavier due to COVID-19 (at your first event)
2. Participants should be healthy and we strongly encourage anyone who has an underlying health condition (heart, lung, diabetes or at high risk), are immunocompromised or 65 and over to not participate as it may put them at higher risk for COVID-19.
3. In person activities will have 1 staff to 6 members with 6 ft distance between each person and be required to wear face mask at the YMCA, unless it’s a physical activity.
4. Upon arriving all participants must get their temperature checked. If temperature not checked, we have the right to refuse service. If you have a temperature over 100.4, you will be asked to return home.
5. IF YOU ARE SICK, STAY HOME. Also, you will be asked the following questions upon arrival
• Have you been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19?
• Are you experiencing a cough, shortness of breath or sore throat?
• Fever in the last 48 hours?
• Have you had vomiting or diarrhea in the last 24 hours?
6. Participants will be required to wash hands, use hand sanitizer as needed (or per staff instruction) in order to reduce the possible spread of COVID-19.
7. Hand sanitizers will be provided and gloves as needed.

New Horizons invites you to join CARE CONNECT! This FREE community group is for family and non-family caregivers, who provide care for an adult with an intellectual or developmental disability.

CARE CONNECT is a monthly gathering where caregivers build relationships, attend workshops led by professionals, share resources and referrals, provide mutual support, develop new coping strategies, and find comfort, strength and hope in a compassionate and safe environment.

Meeting Dates

  • Tuesday, June 23rd
  • Tuesday, July 21st
  • Tuesday, August 18th
  • Tuesday, September 22nd
  • Tuesday, October 20th
  • Tuesday, November 17th
  • Tuesday, December 15th

*Dates subject to change

Reasons to Join and Contribute to the Group

  1. Learn to accept help, ask for help, and acknowledge your
    strengths as a caregiver.
  2. Be confident in knowing that you are not alone.
  3. Develop new friendships and get helpful information.
  4. Express your feelings to reduce caregiver stress.

For additional information, contact:
Lan Le, Program Director
(714) 508-7365 newhorizons@ymcaoc.org

*Respite available upon request

You can become a volunteer at special events and help adults with developmental disabilities and special needs. Volunteers must be 21 years of age and older. For information, please contact Lan Le at lle@ymcaoc.org or 714-508-7635.

View photos from our most recent trips.

Program Office Address

13821 Newport Ave #150
Tustin, CA 92780

Contact Information

Phone: 714-508-7635
Email: newhorizons@ymcaoc.org

Office Hours of Operation

Monday – Friday
9 am – 4 pm