Okizu is hands down the best thing to ever happen to me and I know I'm not alone on that. It helps families deal with the affects of childhood cancer, and it has helped me greatly throughout the years. I absolutely would not be the person I am today if it wasn't for Okizu.
Camp Okizu is a memorable place for all that experience it. I have volunteered at summer and family camps as a camp counselor and have made many friends at camp. I have seen dedicated leadership, staff and volunteers impact children socially by welcoming all children, and have seen staff support children while they continue to be kids! With children going through a variety of emotions (being a siblings or oncology camper) they are welcomed, supported and encouraged to be themselves without worrying about what others would say! Love this organization and I hope to get back this year!
Camp Okizu is the reason for every single happy summer I have ever had. I look forward to my week(s) at camp with burning anticipation, and have since the summer my twin brother was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma at the age of 9. I will never be able to adequately explain how big of an impact my Okizu family had had on my life since. I will forever be indebted to them.
Over one week I never thought that one camp would have such a big impact on my life. The love, happiness and kids excitement is what indescribable! I can't wait to go back, OKIZU is truly the happiest place on Earth!
I have been involved with Okizu for over 20 years...fundraising, board of directors, counselor at family camp, general worker bee...the magic and energy is deep in my heart, but little did I know how much strength it would give me when my own son (how ironic) would be diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma a year and a half ago at the age of 26...Strength, Hope and Comfort...Okizu taught me well..son is thriving...Okizu Strong!
I have volunteered with Okizu for many years now and I can honestly say it is the most magical place on Earth. As soon as you drive on to the property it's like there is an electricity in the air. The programs are amazing for the kids and families served. The weight that has been lifted off of everybody's shoulders is clearly visible just after a day or two. There are weekends for the whole families to come up and spend time together and with other families that have been affected by childhood cancer, week-long summer camp sessions for both patients/survivors and their siblings, weekends specifically for bereaved teenagers, and weekend trips for young adults.
I volunteered as a counselor for Camp Okizu two summers in a row. It is an incredible, life-changing, and inspirational organization. Through volunteering with Camp Okizu, I have met some of the best people I have ever known - people who truly care about making a positive difference in the lives of children and teens coping with cancer. It is wonderful to see the campers simply being kids and having fun (and camp truly is, the MOST FUN place I have ever been). There were moments at camp when I'd pause and think, "This is the best day of my life," so needless to say, each day at camp was a "best day." I cannot express enough how much this organization means to me. I am forever grateful to have served the campers so that they too think, "This is the best day of my life," each day of camp.
As a volunteer, I saw the good Camp Okizu does for the kids as well as for their parents (siblings too). The children were simply having a wonderful time having fun and being treated as children and not patients. Hard to imagine it could get any better. I've also seen many of the letters and videos the children have produced in support of the Camp -- and they love it!,
I have attended this camp for 10 years. I was a camper for 7 years and now I've been a counselor to help change the life of the kids who attend. Camp always made me feel normal as a child. It's a horrible thing to have to see your family go through the experiences of childhood cancer. What I loved about this camp was I reassured you that you weren't alone. I was amazed when I first realized how many children have cancer. And when I attended sibs camp I was able to talk to other children who were in a similar situation like mine. I look forward to camp so much, that has always been my favorite part of my summer. The staff here are amazing and are so caring. I wouldn't be the same person I am today without this amazing place!!