Mom Paid $80 For A One-Day Summer Camp For Her Son And Was Asked To Pick Him Up One Hour Later

She tried to tell them what his needs were, but the camp didn't listen to her.

Twila talking about her autistic son at camp TiKTok @twilaschell / TikTok

A mom on TikTok named Twila recently shared a video in which she talked about the day camp she signed her autistic son up for. Posted on June 23, 2023, the video quickly received nearly a quarter of a million views as people reacted to the heartbreaking situation.

Twila claimed that she had signed up her son for a “Minecraft Coding Camp” that was supposed to last the entire day — her son was very interested in the video game Minecraft, and she was hoping this would be a good opportunity for him to make friends who had common interests.


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The mom paid $80 for a one-day summer camp but was told to pick him up an hour later.

The caption to her TikTok video read, “I always keep my expectations very low for stuff like this and luckily had made plans to stay in the area for the day in case things didn't work out. It breaks my heart nonetheless.”

In her video, Twila explained that since her son is autistic, she’s always very “diligent” and frequently advocates for him, ensuring his needs are met. “Special interest is Minecraft, so I wanted him to go to this, like, Minecraft coding camp. I wanted to feel it out, see if it was a good fit for him and emailed them and told them what his needs were,” she said.




She claimed that she explained to the people at the camp that he was autistic and even asked if she could go to the day camp to be a support person for him because “he needs more one-on-one support than the average kid.”

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“They were very much like ‘hey, we’ve worked with autistic children, we’ve worked with special needs children. Our instructors have experience with it,’” she said. They also revealed that she wasn't allowed to sit in on the class, but she signed him up anyway.


“When I got there, it was two really young guys in their early twenties, so I already knew that these guys probably weren’t going to be able to meet his needs,” she claimed, saying that she had a gut feeling — and she turned out to be right.

“They called me in an hour to come pick him up,” she revealed. “This was a full-day camp. He was supposed to be there all day and they couldn’t even handle an hour being with him.” Twila said all this would have been fine, it’s just the fact that they lied to her and wasted her time.

She was also heartbroken that it didn’t work out, hoping that he would have the opportunity to make friends with the other kids there. “I’m just so sad,” she said at the end of her video.

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Fortunately, Twila was able to receive a refund from the day camp.

Seeing as $80 is no small sum to be throwing around, especially if services weren’t rendered, many people in the comments inquired about the refund they were hoping she would receive. Sure enough, she provided a video update explaining the situation with the refund.

“I definitely did,” she said in her video. “[I] waited until I got home to email them cause they were in the middle of class and it wasn’t really the instructor’s fault. I mean really, they just show up there to work.”



The email simply apologized for the camp not being a good fit and provided Twila with a full refund. She claimed that afterward, they went to the mall with some of her friends and their kids, sharing clips of their adventures and the fun that they had.


Twila’s story is an example of negligence from the coding camp, and many people in the comments said as much as well. They lied about having experience and knowing how to care for her child, despite her giving very clear instructions on what his needs were.

She revealed in the comments that he was “very excited and wouldn't stay seated” without the one-on-one guidance she requested. He would explore the room and go to other kids’ computers and keep touching things.

Had they simply accommodated her requests, it might have been a good time for her son, but at least she was able to receive a full refund in return for her time.


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Isaac Serna-Diez is an Assistant Editor for YourTango who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics.