When James was just nine year old, his Pediatric Oncologist told him about Camp Boggy Creek. “Coming to Camp was probably one the best decisions I’ve ever made,” says James. After attending his first summer session, Camp became an integral part of his life. He began to incorporate the lessons and values he learned as a camper into his everyday life. “Camp brings out the best version of me. It is a place where I know that I can just be myself, and I feel supported and cared for.”
As a camper, James’ only responsibility was to have fun. When James transitioned from camper into our Leader in Training Program and then into Summer Staff member, he was able to show other children with serious illnesses that they can forget about their illnesses and just be a kid. His journey at Camp Boggy Creek had come full circle.
Boggy Creek has impacted James’ life so much that he will be attending graduate school at Columbia University as he pursues his goal of becoming a child psychologist in a camp setting. And, as an added bonus, Columbia University is just a short drive away from another Serious Fun Children’s Network camp. “I knew that when life gets hard or I’m stressed out, I can get into my car and spend a weekend or summer session at Camp,” said James. “I know that it will rejuvenate me. Camp fills me with energy and joy. It brings me so much happiness.”
Are you looking for something in your life that will bring you energy and joy? Consider applying as a volunteer or Summer Staff member today.
Kasey was born with Spina Bifida, a disorder that affects spinal column and organ development before birth and can cause permanent damage. As a result, Kasey is paralyzed below his knees. In his preschool years, he was in and out of doctors’ offices often, but now he only has therapy twice a week after school. Kasey is 10 years old and will need to a wheelchair to get around for the rest of his life.
But that doesn’t slow Kasey down one bit. He loves Camp Boggy Creek and just attended his fifth Family Weekend Retreat here with his mother. He takes part in all the activities. His favorite is playing basketball in the Camp gym. Kasey said, “I’ve made some good friends at Camp. We play basketball together there and now we play in Paralympic events around FL together, too.”
Kasey’s mom loves coming to Family Retreat Weekends, too. She shared, “It’s the one place I can go to relax and not have to worry about what Kasey is doing. I can spend time with other parents and we all share what we’re going through. I have learned a lot from them and this time I was able to help a couple parents with my experiences. That felt great!”
Kasey plans to attend a Summer Session this year if all continues to go well. It will be his first one and his first week away from home on his own. He is looking forward to swimming at Camp this summer, as it is usually too cold to swim on Family Retreat Weekends. Kasey says, “Boggy Creek feels like home. Everyone is so nice and make all of us feel special. This camp inspires me to be confident.” Thanks to your support, Kasey and hundreds of other children are learning to believe in themselves while having the time of their lives!
Carissa and Cayla share more than just family – both have severe asthma. Carissa was diagnosed when she was 18 months old and Cayla at three years old. Both are on medication and must have an inhaler with them at all times. While asthma can vary from day to day, when their breathing becomes really impaired, the girls have to go right to the hospital. Between them, they have had more than a dozen hospital visits in the past few years along with countless trips to the doctor’s office.
In addition to asthma, Carissa also developed myopathy three years ago. Often, Carissa’s legs are so weak that she has to use a wheelchair to get around. Between the two illnesses, Carissa is frequently unable to attend school or participate in many activities with friends.
Both Carissa and Cayla love Camp Boggy Creek because the campers and counselors understand their challenges and encourage them to take part in every activity. They don’t have to worry about their illnesses getting in the way of having fun. Since both are creative, the sisters always have a great time at the woodshop and in arts and crafts. Carissa and Cayla have made new friends and lots of memories. They have also learned how to turn their fears into challenges that can be overcome with the help of friends!
Camp Boggy Creek – A Proud Charity of IMSA
-Camp Boggy Creek is honored to be a Proud Charity of the International Motor Sports Association.
A Volunteer’s Life Changing Story About Camp
-Volunteering at Camp will change someone else’s life for the better.
10 Reasons to Give
-First the first time I was accepted as who I am.
The Tanners’ Experience at Camp Boggy Creek
-Life changing experiences for Evie, 6, and her family.
Biking to Boggy
-Young woman biked 880 miles to raise money for Camp Boggy Creek.
"Camp Boggy Creek is a wonderful camp! My oldest daughter attended for several years and now has been back as a volunteer! This summer she is applying to work at the camp! She's come full circle!"