Fun And Friendship For Kids Living With Cancer
For children living with cancer and their families maintaining a sense of normality and a positive outlook can be a challenge. Not-for-profit nationwide organisation Camp Quality believes that providing opportunities for kids to have fun is a powerful positive force for those living with cancer.
Established over 30 years ago, Camp Quality provides week-long summer camps for young people aged 5-16 as well as two weekend-long winter camps. Around 300 children each year participate in regional camps throughout the country with up to 90 attending the Auckland/Northland one.
‘Our camps provide a caring environment where fun and friendship are combined with exciting activities, giving a sense of normality and independence,’ explains Dharmesh Nanu, Auckland/Northland Regional Manager.
Each child is paired up with a volunteer adult companion who supports and encourages them throughout the week.
Camp Quality is a volunteer organisation and relies entirely on donations and fundraising. The camps are provided free of charge to both the child and the adult companion.
And now thanks to the Million Dollar Mission, more local children will be able to enjoy the fun and friendship of the camp experience. The $10,500 of funding will be put to good use by supporting the transport, accommodation and activities provided in the week-long summer camp.
There’s no denying the impact Camp Quality has on individual children and their families. These include children like Lulu, who aged just two and a half was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer called ganglioneuroblastoma. Now aged 10, she has been on five camps and the experience has made a big difference to Lulu and her family.
Mum Kylie explains more: ‘Lulu comes back from camp full of excitement and life with wonderful stories of all the fun stuff she’s done.
‘Camp Quality has given Lulu independence and a sense of normality out in the world. I’ve seen how she’s changed going to camp and what it means to her when I know how hard and frustrating Lulu’s daily struggles are,’ says Kylie.
Camp Quality New Zealand is just one of more than 100 community groups, charities and not-for-profit organisations to benefit from the Million Dollar Mission to date.
“We are very grateful for the support of The Trusts and the Million Dollar Mission. It means we can continue to provide amazing experiences and the opportunity for these young people living with cancer to just be kids,” says Dharmesh.
To find out more information about the fantastic work of Camp Quality, to become a volunteer or make a donation check out the website at www.campquality.org.nz