Periwinkle Foundation


The Psychosocial Benefits of Camp

Camp has proven benefits for children with life threatening illnesses and their siblings.

Benefits for patients and siblings include:

  • A new or greatly improved sense of well-being
  • Improved self-confidence
  • Acceptance and understanding
  • A welcome break from hospital routine
  • Meeting other kids in the same circumstances and realizing they are not alone
  • Meeting adults who are long-term survivors
  • Feeling like a kid again

Benefits for parents include:

  • Having a week to address their own needs
  • A welcome break from hospital routine
  • An opportunity to focus on other children
  • An opportunity to feel “normal”
  • Learning to “let go” and to allow their child to gain independence and grow in self-esteem

Many children arrive at camp frightened and wondering what in the world they will be able to do for one whole week away from home! From the second they get off the bus, they learn that they can do everything just like “normal” children. As one mother put it, “This is a camp where anyone can do anything – it’s about ‘CAN’ not ‘CAN’T’. It’s about being a kid, not being a sick/disabled/different kid – just a kid where possibilities are realities.”

Much of the volunteer staff is made up of the same nurses and doctors the children see at the hospital. Making happy memories together at camp, they develop a stronger and more supportive relationship. After camp, seeing each other becomes a positive experience as they recall the joy and laughter of The Periwinkle Foundation’s camps.

The Periwinkle Foundation develops and provides programs that positively change the lives of children, young adults and families who are challenged by cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and are cared for at Texas Children's Hospital.