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What Kids Say About Camp

***With the end of summer, this concludes our three-part series about Camp Sunrise, a place of summer fun for pediatric oncology patients at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center. Read parts one and two.

We asked kids and staff from Camp Sunrise to describe what they love about camp and their dreams for the future. Here's what they said:

“Camp Sunrise is cool because the other campers know what you’ve been through with hospital stays and surgeries. It’s easy to talk because they understand what you’re talking about.”

Camp Sunrise camper

“When I see these kids in the Cancer Center, often they are sick, and we’re administering very complicated therapies. Then I see them at camp each year playing and having such a great time. It’s a wonderful thing for me and for all of the medical staff to see.”
Donald Small
Director of Pediatric Oncology

“I want to be a veterinarian.”
Camp Sunrise camper

“Kids with cancer don’t really get to do a lot of fun things. They have to be in a hospital, and that’s not fair for them. They made this camp because they want kids like me to be able to do all of the fun stuff that other kids get to do every day of their lives.”
Camp Sunrise camper

“I’ve been going to camp for nine years, and the reason I keep coming back is the relationships, the family I have with these people. I’ve known them almost my entire life. We’ve been through so much together. It just means so much to me. I have to come back to see them.”
Camp Sunrise camper

“When I first came to Camp Sunrise, I was 5 years old and bald. I didn’t know what it was going to be like. I went to campfires, and ate s’mores. I felt like a kid again.”
Camp Sunrise camper

"It really makes your heart warm. It's the best feeling inside to see these kids so happy."
—Marilyn Scalf
Camp Sunrise director

“These kids have been through one of the most difficult things we could imagine. They deserve the best.”
Camp Sunrise staff member

“I want to be a designer for Lego.”
Camp Sunrise camper

“Just suppose we all worked together to help children with cancer. You come to camp thinking you are giving back, but in reality, the kids are giving us so much more than we give them.”
Camp Sunrise staff member

Read more about how to help Camp Sunrise.