All About Chai Lifeline Summer Camps
By: Adina Saban
Every summer, Chai Lifeline Canada provides incredible camp opportunities for families. With our various camps having sessions throughout the summer, there is a place for everybody to feel welcome and have fun! As summer comes to an end, we want to look back and celebrate the awesome experiences that took place.
Camp Simcha and Camp Simcha Special
Split into four two-week sessions, thirty Chai Lifeline Canada clients were able to spend two amazing weeks at the camp, affectionately called “the happiest place on earth.” What makes the camp so special is that children who are medically fragile can attend and participate in any activity because all of their needs, whether that is a medical or accessibility need, are met.
With different themes every day, such as “Dr. Seuss,” “Target,” and “Fast and Furious” (to name a few), the campers always knew they could expect some exciting surprises in their day. And during the evenings at the camp bonfire, campers were able to share their personal stories with each other, knowing that they were doing so in a supportive and understanding environment.
Camp Simcha Without Borders
Taking place twice in the summer, once for boys and once for girls, Camp Simcha Without Borders is a thrilling day that brings the spirit of Camp Simcha closer to home. The day began with a party bus that drove the campers to a cottage outside the city. They got to go swimming, boating, jet-skiing, enjoyed a flyboarding show, and even got to try flyboarding themselves! To end the day, there was a BBQ, some s’mores, and campers were gifted personalized swag as a way to remember this day!
Camp Lifeline: Tiny Treasures
This summer, we introduced a brand-new weekly program called Tiny Treasures. Medically fragile babies and toddlers attended the camp with a parent or caregiver. There were four Chai Lifeline teen volunteers who ran programming for the little ones, while the adults got to enjoy some downtime. The programing included story and music time, visits with farm animals, finger painting, play therapy, a drumming circle, and more! All the activities were structured to be adaptable and inclusive. We created and fostered a community for the adults, where they could share tips and exchange ideas on how to support a child with medical needs.
Camp Lifeline: Trip Edition
We started off August with our annual day camp, Camp Lifeline, except this year, it was bigger and better than ever because for the first time, Camp Lifeline included siblings and children of parents who are ill. Every day for two weeks, there were new adventures to be had. There was Sports Car Day, where the campers got to be passengers in fancy sports cars, a pirate adventure on a boat on Lake Ontario, day trips to Canada’s Wonderland, Ripley’s Aquarium, The Toronto Zoo, Sky Zone, and so many more! Never a dull moment for our campers who got to experience the best of what the city has to offer in the summertime!
Camp Lifeline Away
A trip to Niagara Falls is always nice, but when you get to go with your friends for Camp Lifeline Away, you know you’re going to have the best time! Taking place over a short three days, Camp Lifeline Away was jam packed with activities! Campers got to do mini golf and go karting, explore all the fun Clifton Hill has to offer, take a thrilling boat journey near the falls, and spend a day at Marineland. There were BBQs every day and fireworks to end the nights. It was a trip nobody will forget!
Camp Lifeline Montreal
This summer, Camp Lifeline Montreal came back with a bang! There were themed days, such as “Artist Day” and “Candy Day,” incredible visits from ReptiZoo, and exciting trips to places like Skytag and Putting Edge. The campers and counselors brought so much energy to each day, with their singing, dancing, and giggling, that it was the place to be this summer in Montreal!
We cannot wait until next summer when we can do this all again. Until then, the memories from the last two months will last a lifetime and carry the kids and their families through the year!