This was Casey's first go-away camp. We were nervous. Casey was nervous. He just finished radiation, had no hair and felt alone. It took a day or two but he left counting the days to next year! He loved it! As parents, we were relaxed knowing he had his own camp counselor. We would highly recommend Camp Quality!
My experience was amazing. I loved being there and seeing the kids with their smiling faces looking back at me :)
I started volunteering with Camp Quality Michigan in 2007 as a companion at South Camp. I immediately fell in love with the campers, families and staff. Last fall, I took on the position of Camper Recruitment Coordinator for the 2009 camp. I was able to connect with potential campers and their families, while spreading the word about CQ and all it has to offer (free of charge, of course!) Camp Quality is the perfect place for children with cancer to feel like a "normal child" again. They are surrounded by individuals who understand what a child with cancer goes through. Children can attend camp without the fear of being judged, asked personal questions, or stared at, because almost every camper there knows what it is like to experience side effects from treatment. CQ has provided me with memories that will last forever, and I know that wherever I am in my life or career, I will always spend a week of my summer at CQ.
I started volunteering for this organization in 2006- I have not been able to leave yet! My camper and I have become good friends and we talk anywhere from once a week to once a month. Camp Quality allows just what they advertise:kids to be kids again. My camper has made so many strong, lifelong connections to close friends- it is amazing.
CAMP QUALITY IS TRULY AMAZING! This past summer was my first summer involved with Camp Quality, and now I cannot see my summers without it. The people involved with this camp are exceptional. Giving up their time to spend with children in need. Not only are the adults and companions great, but SO ARE THE KIDS! I have never been to a camp when the kids weren't so quick to judge and things weren't all about competition. At most camps, when organized games are played it is all about winning, and being the best. Here it is about trying something new, giving your all, having fun, and supporting each other. The kids here are experiencing something I never did as a teen, SUPPORT FROM MY PEERS! I have also never played a 20 inning baseball game, with 15 kids in the outfield, no score, everyone and anyone rooting you on. My camper has taught me so much about love, life and enjoying it to the fullest. I only hope I have taught my camper as much as she has helped me! I LOVE CAMP QUALITY!
Camp Quality was a wonderful experience that made a difference in the lives of both campers and volunteers. The personal feeling the staff and volunteers are taught to give the campers is like no other volunteer experience I have ever participated in. While the experience was deeply emotional, it was rewarding knowing that I was part of allowing children to be children again.
I was a first time volunteer this summer for Camp Quality and I had so much fun. Everyone was there for the kids and the experience was amazing. The campers have gone through so much at such a young age and truly are miracles. Being able to help provide a week free of cancer for them was an honor. Everyone was so nice and I was able to meet many people. Everyone comes from all over and has different backgrounds but comes together and makes this week possible. I plan to come back again in the future and have recommended it to many others.
Camp Quality was the absolute best week of my summer. It was great to be able to work in the environment that Camp provides for the kids. Everyone says that once you become a part of the CQ family, you can't stop and it's so true!
We had decided to send son/grandson this year to Camp Quality. We had heard about the camp a couple of years prier to this but just couldn't bring ourself to sending him. No longer will we hesitate it was a wonderfull experance for him.He has not stopped talking about it or his companians. I know that it was wonderful for him to get out with kids like him.It will be one of the frist things we get him signed up for next summer!! Thanks To All
My first experience with Camp Quality Michigan was as a camper at the age of 8. I had lymphoblastic lymphoma when I was 4, and then after I had gone into remission we heard about this camp for kids who have or have had cancer, and I decided to go. I loved it from my first summer there, and began to look forward to it as the highlight of my summer every year. I continued to return as a camper for 9 more years, until the summer after I was a senior in high school. I took the required one year off, and came back as a companion after my sophomore year of college, and it was one of the best experiences of my life. I have had the same camper for 4 years now (and we plan to hit 5, and then keep going), and it is an amazing experience to get to watch her grow. Camp is one of the few places where I really felt like I fit in, while I was growing up. Although I was young when I had cancer, it still followed me. Everyone got worried about me when they heard that I had it, but there I could go and just be myself. We talked about cancer related things, and it wasn't strange - after all, we had all been through it. I got to experience things I never would have, otherwise. I got to ride an elephant, go up in a hot air balloon, go horse back riding, as well as just be in an environment where I was loved and respected. I'm still good friends with both campers and companions from when I was a camper, and love talking to all the interesting people that I've met. Camp Quality is one of the most wonderful experiences that I have ever had. I'm currently living in Alaska, but still plan to come back to camp - that's how important it is, to me and to all the people that we reach out and are able to help.
This was my first involvement with Camp Quality this last summer. I heard about it through a classmate and decided to volunteer as a companion. I never thought it would have such an effect on me. The kids, the staff and everyone involved, all make this week amazing. I will definitely be back next year and have recruited a friend to help and experience this astonishing organization. My camper and I have been keeping in touch on facebook, but I cannot wait till Oct. 11th for the re-union to see everyone.
Being a volunteer for Camp Quality has been a huge part of my life for the past 3 years. The smiles, hugs, cheers are abundant all week long! All the support and love don’t end with camp. There’s also tons of other activities all FREE to the kids and their families. I LOVE CAMP QUALITY and what it stands for. The kids are my heroes. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your family.
This is without a doubt the most heartwarming event I have ever be involved with.The aspect of what is being done is astounding. These kids are the most courageous people around and its my priviledge to help in the little way I can..God Bless all the kids!!! Dan Chemotti
I have worked with Camp Quality South for 2 years now, and I have loved each year for its own special reasons. They have it so organized, and well staffed it makes the week a breeze for the campers and companions! It is an awesome experience, and a very very rewarding one also!
I have a long history with Camp Quality. I attended my first camp in 1989 in Northwest Missouri as a camper. For an 9 year old living with cancer (non-hodgkins lymphoma), the freedoms and opportunities at camp allowed me to be a kid again. No one stared because I was bald or because I had unusual scars. No one treated me like I was fragile. For that week at camp, I was a normal kid doing normal things. I attended Camp Quality for seven years as a camper, then I returned as a companion. I lived in Los Angeles for nine years, where there are no Camp Qualitys. As soon as I found out I was moving to Michigan, I contacted the camp director, Julie, and she let me volunteer for camp. (Thank you, Julie!!) Now that I'm am adult (and a 20 year survivor!), I was still amazed at the feeling of companionship, the strength that comes from five days of letting kids hike, swim, and have campfires and smores. At Camp Quality every feeling is valid; and those living with cancer don't feel weak if they cry or embarrassed if they act goofy or ashamed of their bald head. It's impossible to convey here the effect Camp Quality has had on my life. All I hope is that I can help give other cancer kids what camp gave me.
Being a volunteer the past three years has totally changed my life. Seeing these children fight cancer and knowing how strong they are is truly extraordinary and an inspiration to me. Camp Quality is a place where we can all relax, have fun, forget our sorrows, and share life time memories. Being one on one with a child is a great experience because as a companion I get to build a relationship that will last for years. CQ is a free camp for everyone and is definitely the best experience you will ever have whether you are a companion or camper. Every year is new and exciting and as soon as that week is done, you begin counting down the days until you return in the summer once again.
Camp Quality is an incredible experience for kids with cancer. It provides a positive, outdoor experience full of action, and joy. Most of the kids and even some of the staff have cancer so they understand what it is like to need a place to escape the stares, questions, worry and hospital smells. A place full of sunshine, the smell of pine, the sound of waves lapping the shore and the constant spilling over of laughter. A place where it's ok to enjoy every moment of a day. A place to stare down cancer, because you can see someone who successfully has at every turn. Camp Quality is a journey that while you're packing your bag to go...you already know it will be wonderful!
My first year at Camp Quality was 2002. Since that time I have not missed a year and continue to take one weeks vacation from my job as a bookkeeper/tax collector just to attend. For the last 6 years I have been in charge of the kitchen. I organize the groups that provide meals and order all the food to feed approximately 200 people 3 meals a day for a week. I like to tell people it is the second best thing I've done in my life-my daughter Jamie being the first. Several years ago I attended a meeting of a local Kiwanis Club. I told the members that working with Camp Quality was like being in a huge group hug. You feel surrounded by all the love and caring from the wonderful people who give their time to the kids of Camp Quality. Whatever I give to Camp Quality is nothing compared to what I receive being a part of this wonderful organization. I plan to keep attending for as long as I am physically able and I'll continue to encourage all my friends to share in this wonderful experience.
I was a first time counselor at the North Camp and found it to be extremely rewarding. The staff was very organized and truly put all of their energy into allowing the campers to have the best possible week. We had 71 campers and activities galore. It was amazing to see so many people come together for one common goal. The kids were the focus and everything else took a back seat. What a tremendous organization!!
I was asked 8 years ago if I would be on standby as a "Health Officer" for Camp Quality. I knew little of the organization, but was retired and summered in MI. I was disappointed I wasn't needed that year-but have been on staff ever since. I have been rewarded time and again by the courage the kids show in the face of uncertainty, and the compassion of an all volunteer staff. The camp offers respite and support to families of kids with cancer. In many cases, kids who have beaten cancer come back as staff, and share their stories with the kids. A lot of hope, a lot of laughs-a "Quality" adventure.
Camp Quality is a place where children with cancer can come and enjoy LIFE for a whole week. They are surrounded by people who care about them invidually, experience many new adventures,forget about treatments, and be with kids who are or who have gone through some of the same things that they are dealing with currently. It is an envornment of care and support for families and the child. I love being a part of the companion staff and I wouldn't spend a week doing anything else!