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Camp Happy Days Celebrates Successful Year for Their Holiday Giving Program



By: Camp Happy Days

The holidays are meant to be a time of joy and celebration each year, but for families with a child diagnosed with cancer, it can be a time of stress and worry. Families may spend the holidays separated while one of their children receives life-saving treatment at the hospital and their siblings are at home. Add on the financial stress from medical bills, cost of transportation and food while traveling to doctors’ visits, and families can be increasingly overwhelmed during the holidays.  

For the last 12 years during the holiday season, Camp Happy Days and our community has come together to ensure families with a child diagnosed with cancer have the support needed to bring some much-needed holiday cheer to children and families impacted by pediatric cancer through our Holiday Giving program. Families with a child diagnosed or relapsed in the last five years, and those that have lost a child to their cancer in the last two years, are able to create a special wish list that is matched with a holiday sponsor who shops and wraps the items.

This year, we have more families than ever requesting support from Holiday Giving. We have 77 families and 209 children that will be receiving special holidays gifts this year, this is a 52% increase from 2020. Nevertheless, due to special sponsors such as Kim Boerman, Kickin Chicken, Cokesbury United Methodist Church, Commonwealth Financial Group, Yarborough Applegate and many, many more businesses and individuals, we were able to ensure every single child enrolled will have something to be thankful for this year. Wishlist’s are personalized for each child and include items adding up to $150 and range from baby items and clothes to Lego sets, doll houses, and Bluetooth speakers.

This year, we had a special request for surfboards. Three brothers have found a passion for surfing together and their mom wanted to make this an extra special Christmas and make their dream come true. Thanks to one of our amazing sponsors, the family will have three surfboards under their tree this year.

Mom shared what a special opportunity this is for her boys so they can have the healing impact that surfing has become for the family. Their mom, Brenda, shared that “Vinny has been  supported by his brothers throughout his treatment. The three boys are inseparable. They let loose with no worries in the world when they’re out in the water. Now they’ll have surfboards of their own and not have to wait for the next surfing opportunity!”

We reached out to one of our biggest holiday sponsors on why she has been such a big supporter of our Holiday Giving program over the years. Kim helped sponsor 23 children just this year!

“I have found that people want to make a difference but often don’t know how.” Kim Boerman said. “What a blessing to share Camp Happy Days’ mission with friends, family, and acquaintances during this holiday season. I am certain that having a child who has cancer is not only emotionally painful, but financially painful as well. Because of this, we are happy to step in and lighten the load for parents using their resources to keep their children alive and loved, all while performing all the other tasks that parents have. One simple social media call-out is able to employ an army of Christmas Elves that spark into action. We divide and conquer, allowing us to sponsor many children during the holiday season.”

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