Why come to camp?
Established 25 years ago, Camp Simcha has delivered millions of smiles and thousands of incredible summers to children with life threatening diseases.
Each summer, 430 seriously ill children are treated to unforgettable, medically supervised overnight camp experiences at Camp Simcha, for children battling cancer and other hematologic illnesses, and Camp Simcha Special, for children with debilitating chronic conditions. At these, the only kosher overnight camps for seriously ill campers, children and teens trade hospital rooms and doctors’ offices for summers of fun, friendship, and hope.
Every day packs in a full 24 hours of amazing, fun-filled activities led by trained volunteer counselors whose specialty is showering children with love and fostering bonds that stand the test of time. The program is a mixture of traditional camp activities and special events, including talent shows, concerts, helicopter and motorcycle rides that make every hour super-special. Campers return home enriched by their experiences, filled with happy memories, and armed with a community of friends who will help them through the rough patches in their lives.
Health and safety are paramount all summer long. Camp Simcha’s medical program is supervised by Peter Steinherz, MD, member and attending physician at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. Robert Van Amerongen, MD, director of the Pediatric Emergency Service, Department of Emergency Medicine, at New York Methodist Hospital in Brooklyn, New York, supervises the medical program at Camp Simcha Special. Specialized pediatricians, nurses, paramedics, and a pharmacist are on-site at all times. Our brand-new Health Center boasts state-of-the-art facilities to handle everything from routine scrapes and bumps to medical emergencies. Chemotherapy can be administered at camp. An on-site ambulance and access to Medevac helicopter helps assure that campers can be transported to top medical centers quickly and efficiently if needed.
And because we know that caring for a sick child is expensive, both Camp Simcha and Camp Simcha Special are both completly free of cost. Chai Lifeline even pays for transportation from the child’s home city.
It’s no wonder that parents discover that their children count the days to the Camp Simcha and Camp Simcha Special summer from the moment they come home.