What a night! The NSW/ACT Camp Quality Graduation Camp 2014
At a Farewell Formal Dinner at Sydney's Doltone House, Camp Quality Ambassadors Luke Jacobz and Ryan 'Fitzy' Fitzgerald surprised the children as they arrived by interviewing them on the red carpet. The footage was beamed back into Doltone House so other children could watch the surprise of their fellow 'campers' as they arrived. Volunteers acted as paparazzi and secretly briefed the celebrities so they knew the name, hobbies and passions of each young person, adding to their surprise as they welcomed them. Earlier in the week the children were treated to a special cooking lesson by celebrity chef Justine Schofield.
Monika Kodrun, our Program Coordinator said: "This was the final camp we'll run for young people in this age group, so it was very special and very emotional. Due to cancer, these kids wouldn't have had a 'normal childhood' meaning they may've missed out on many of the milestones most young people can take for granted such as adventurous activities or their school formal. At Camp Quality we pride ourselves on giving children back their childhood, but also restoring the confidence that the anxiety of the cancer journey may have stolen from them. Creating lasting memories is also something we specialise it. We certainly did that."
Luke Jacobz said: "I've been a Camp Quality Ambassador for several years now. As well as supporting their fundraising events, I just love to get out there and meet the kids. Whether they're a kid with cancer, or a sibling, they've faced stressful situations that would make any adult feel anxious. So making them feel excited about life again is essential. I'm so proud to be part of it."
This is the last ever camp that we will run for young people in the 13 - 18 age group. We are reducing our age range to help children with cancer aged 13 and under in collaboration with CanTeen, which supports teenagers and young people with cancer. Recently diagnosed children aged over 13 will 'graduate' up to CanTeen. This is to reduce duplication of services in the voluntary sector, and also to ensure all young people living with cancer over 13 years old are given the support they need.