June 20, 2014
One of the more than 90 KOA Care Camps was featured on Seattle’s KOMO-TV and ABC’s Good Morning America this week in stories explaining the funding cutbacks that have hit these valuable programs.
Camp Goodtimes, a summer camp on Puget Sound near Seattle, hosts hundreds of children with cancer each year, giving kids a chance to have fun, make new friends and take a break from the world of cancer that dominates their lives and the lives of their parents and siblings.
The two television reports focused on the funding challenges facing Camp Goodtimes and other summer camps that had been receiving substantial financial assistance from the American Cancer Society, which has cut funding.
The camp’s executive director, Carol Mastenbrook, explained the funding situation in this KOMO video posted June 18.
Mastenbrook told KOMO’s Lindsay Cohen that more than 200 kids attend free weeklong camps on Vashon Island during the summer. Dozens of volunteers provide support for many activities and health care needs. Donations from parents, corporations and other individuals have helped to keep the camps up and running for 2014.
Connor Dunham’s mother, Alicia, told KOMO that her 10-year-old son, a cancer survivor, loves his time at camp.
“The courage he gets carries him throughout the entire year,” she told KOMO. “It gives him a self-worth that you can see.”
“You get a week with no doctors and no medicines or anything,” Connor added. “It’s awesome.”
Here is a video from ABC’s Good Morning America report on Camp Goodtimes funding being cut posted June 20.