There were a lot of smiles and giggles when our campers had another chance to catch up at three of the Day Camp activities in March and April.
In late March, 30 teenagers aged between 12-17 years attended Mt Evelyn Recreation Camp in Melbourne’s outer east. Activities included the big swing, high ropes, a walk along Olinda Creek and fun in the pool on a wonderfully warm autumn day. Campers had the opportunity to share stories in the group Q&A sessions where volunteers also talked about their diabetes experiences and tips, while supported by diabetes nurse educators.
This was followed by the 8–11-yearolds enjoying a day at Arrabri Lodge in Warburton East. Set against a stunning forest backdrop, 52 children enjoyed outdoor-based activities; such as the flying fox, climbing wall, low ropes, mini golf, archery and much more.
A couple of weeks later, it was time for 33 teenagers living with type 1 diabetes to meet at YMCA Lake Dewar Lodge near Bacchus March. They participated in various activities; including the flying fox, kayaking, go-karting, arts & crafts and a campfire Q&A session. This event was rescheduled from March 2022 due to bad storms on the scheduled event day. For the rescheduled day, the camps team were faced once again with a stormy weather forecast… but luckily, this time, the storms decided to pass overnight providing the campers with clear skies to enjoy the day.
As overnight diabetes camps have been on hold due to COVID-19 restrictions and related concerns for the past two years, Diabetes Victoria’s camps team made sure all events were delivered as COVID-safe as possible. Camper check-in was a new experience in a drive-thru format with rapid antigen testing, temperature checks and COVID-19 screening questions.
All days were well received by the campers and their families. Some campers even expressed their hope that mum and dad would be late to pick them up so they could stay a little longer! For many campers, this was their first opportunity to meet other children living with diabetes and to see a big group of people having blood glucose checks and insulin doses together.
Diabetes Camps Victoria would like to warmly thank the many volunteers, health professionals and Diabetes Victoria staff present at the events. Without the hard work, enthusiasm and passion of this team, the camps would not be possible. Fingers crossed that we can safely resume the overnight camp program very soon!
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Diabetes Victoria's camps program is funded through the National Diabetes Services Scheme. The NDSS is an initiative of the Australian Government and is administered by Diabetes Australia. The NDSS Agent in Victoria is Diabetes Victoria.