Camp Hope is Growing!
Updated: Oct 19
Too many of us know that a life-threatening diagnosis such as cancer or a blood disorder changes lives forever. Families are forced to adapt to a new schedule filled with invasive tests and treatments, lengthy hospitalizations, and critical medical events. This often leads to family upheaval, time away from work, school, and social activities. Patients and their families live with fear, anger, anxiety, and loss of identity that creates lasting emotional wounds. Many are left socially isolated with difficulty connecting to peers during and after treatment.
In 2016, Camp Hope was created to help connect these patients and provide a chance to laugh, play, and be silly away from the gloom of the disease while still in a medically safe environment. Patients could learn a new skill, ride a horse, go swimming, fishing, boating, or even zip line! Life-long friendships were formed and lives were made better with the amazing experience that is Camp Hope.
In September of 2022, the Camp Hope Foundation Board was formed to fund the annual Camp Hope program and go even further. There is a serious lack in the support offered for others affected by these illnesses like young adults, the families of patients, and those left to deal with the loss of a loved one. Below are a number of programs we are planning to fill that gap. While the quest to end cancer continues, we are here to give patients and their families enriching experiences and a community of support.
Day Camp Ages 4+
This is targeted to our younger cancer and blood disease patients and those who cannot stay overnight so they can be involved in camp activities during the day.
Hope to Hospital
Camp Hope activities are modified and provided to patients in the hospital who cannot attend camp in person. With future support we will bring camp activities to children and young adults with long-term hospital stays.
Young Adult Retreats
With the serious lack of support and resources for young adults diagnosed with cancer and sickle cell disease, we offer retreats bi-annually and to create a community of support and resources, including monthly activities, mentorship, and so much more. In September of 2023 we ran our first AYA (Adolescent Young Adult) Retreat.
After the death of a child to cancer, surviving family members and loved ones suffer and are often left broken. These retreats will focus on remembering and celebrating the life of that child while rebuilding the family unit within a community of support.
Children of adults with cancer suffer but often in silence as their whole world changes. The child may not understand their parent's disease, and they may worry about the outcome. We plan to host a week-long camp where they can connect with others on a similar journey and find resources to help them cope.
With your help, we can start to build a system of year-round support for all those affected by these catastrophic diagnoses. Donate now to help get these programs started and provide support not just for our younger patients, but our older patients and their families as well!