Within the past few months, the Operations team has visited several hospitals to not only promote Double H but to also provide children in the hospital setting with some camp fun. The valuable lesson learned throughout all of the trips and adventures is that camp is so much bigger than just the campers that attend.
“We realized the power of camp outside of the camp’s grounds and are excited to continue building the Hospital Outreach position. As one child at Montefiore said “you guys don’t have to try to be fun, you just are!” It was obvious that doctors, nurses, parents and siblings benefit from having us come talk about camp, play and spread that camp magic.” Program Director, Kate Walsh.
The first hospital trips of the season were to our local Albany Medical Center pediatrics floor where we set up shop in the Child Life Play Room. We also went room-to-room to provide kids who couldn’t leave their rooms with some camp magic. Kids were able to make race cars to race down the halls, paint pumpkins for Halloween, create beautiful sand art displays and play tons of games!
In October, the team headed to New York City for several hospital visits. Jacqui, Caroline and Kate went to the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore and had an amazing time with children and families who were waiting to receive treatments. We were busy from the moment we arrived until we packed up the last arts and crafts glue stick! Children were able to make race cars, paint and decorate treasure boxes and play with clay! It was an action packed morning.
Caroline then headed over to Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of New York Presbyterian to meet up with John where they met with nurses to talk about camp and increase awareness of the programs we offer at the Double H. This was a very successful visit and we are excited to continue building this partnership. At the same time, Tara and Emo were meeting with doctors and nurses at Jacobi Medical Center in the Bronx to discuss camp and answer any questions they may have about sending their patients to the Double H.
Our hospital tour concluded with a trip to Saint Barnabas in New Jersey. This was very similar to our trips to Albany Medical Center. We set up activities in the playroom and also went room-to-room to provide campers with activities. Kids made pillowcases, murals, and race cars. It was a wonderful morning!
Each summer, Double H welcomes in 30 hospital partners from as close as Albany, NY to as far away as Chicago, IL. In 2010, close to 400 children arrived to camp through the support of their hospital and the incredible nurses, social workers and child life specialists. They make the long journey to camp each summer alongside children they may only see in the hospital clinic, but who quickly become their friends. Over 50% of the total summer camp population are children organized through our hospital partners.