I was 9 years old when I first went to camp, and I attended until I finished my 2nd year of LIT training. I remember not wanting to go because I was sad that I would be away from home for so long, but my brother who had attended Sidekicks told me I HAD to go because it’s SO MUCH FUN. So I went. I had the greatest time, and remember not wanting to leave when my parents came to pick me up on family day. Camp gave me the opportunity to be a kid and have fun, and meet some of my best friends who could relate to the things I have been through. Camp, and the amazing people who make up our “campily” have had such a huge impact on my life because of what they do for kids and their families who have been affected by cancer.
In honor of Childhood Cancer awareness month in September 2017 I decided I wanted to create a Gold Game to raise childhood cancer awareness and funds for AZ Camp Sunrise & Sidekicks. My favorite sport is volleyball and it just happens to be that it’s in season at this time. So I got in touch with St. Augustine Catholic High School, my alma mater, to pitch them my idea and they loved it! Leading up to the night of the game, students from the school are informed that September is childhood cancer awareness month, and I get to share my story with them. On the day of the event students are able to wear gold to school instead of their uniforms to help support the cause.
At the game each team wears gold shirts while they warm up, and some have made gold ribbons to put in their hair. Before the game we invite everyone to pray for the children fighting, the survivors and the ones who have passed away. I have an info table set up with information about camp so that people can learn more about camp and SWKCF, as well as donate or buy merch! It’s great to see two teams come together to raise awareness and funds for childhood cancer.
The Gold Game has become an annual event and was hosted by The Gregory School this year. This year, we raised $675 for camp and were able to inform others about childhood cancer and what SWKCF has to offer.