DRWF Events: Apply for virtual family camp for young people with type 1 diabetes
Published on 6 January 2021
The events, organised in collaboration with Over The Wall, follow the launch of their interactive, online programme- ‘Camp in the Cloud’.
The children’s charity now plans to offer places to enable even more children and their families access to the virtual camp this year in partnership with DRWF.
The move to an online format follows the decision to cancel last year’s scheduled residential event during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Camp in the Cloud was launched specifically to address the needs of the children who were scheduled to attend Over The Wall’s residential camps in 2020, with the aim of bringing the magic of camp directly into their homes.
The first Over The Wall Camp in the Cloud events held this year involved delivering activity boxes to ‘campers’ and families right across the UK, with hundreds of children logging on to a bespoke online platform for a fully interactive camp experience. The response to this was incredible with participants being able to communicate, join in activities and feel the joy and magic of Over The Wall camps - all from the comfort of their own homes.
Camps were provided for children who have health challenges, as well as their siblings and their families.
Sarah, a parent of a Camp in the Cloud camper, said: “During Camp in the Cloud, Ariel was on such a high and was really animated and buzzing all the time. The activities were inspired, and so engaging.
“It just felt like an immense amount of thought was put into Camp in the Cloud, and consideration of the kids was right at the forefront. There was such variety and interest that was channelled with limited resources -and potentially limited space- yet it completely worked. Over The Wall couldn’t have provided a better alternative to normal camp.”
DRWF and Over The Wall hope to reintroduce venue-based camps for children with type 1 diabetes in 2022, but will closely monitor circumstances.
Kevin Mathieson, CEO at Over The Wall, said: “The Camp in the Cloud programme was initially developed in response to the lockdown, but a virtual camp has always been something Over The Wall has planned to offer. The concept of camp as a virtual experience allows us to reach those children with serious illnesses who may not be able to attend our physical venues due to a variety of reasons such as medical or mobility limitations. In the future, we hope to reach campers both virtually and residentially allowing children to experience the mischief and magic of camp, regardless of the constraints of their illness.”
If you are interested in applying for, or volunteering at Camp in The Cloud 2021, visit www.otw.org.uk
It is currently estimated there are around 29,000 children in the UK living with type 1 diabetes. For these young people, quality of life is adversely affected by isolation and their inability to participate in many of the everyday activities enjoyed by their friends and peers. This often results in a growing lack of self-esteem and confidence which can become a barrier to future growth and development.
Over The Wall’s residential programmes (rated outstanding by Ofsted), are designed to bring about transformational change, helping young people with long-term conditions to tackle these issues.
DRWF and Over The Wall worked together to host the first residential camp in 2019 specifically to families with children with type 1 diabetes in the hope that young campers return home with a new sense of their abilities and ambitions and feeling far less isolated. Thanks to the generosity of DRWF supporters we gave 20 children living with type 1 diabetes and their families the experience of a residential camp at no cost to them.
Read more about the Camp in the Cloud events here
The camp was a welcome addition to DRWF’s existing award-winning diabetes wellness event programme. The charity received the Judges' Special Award and Highly Commended in the Empowering People with Diabetes category, at the annual Quality in Care Diabetes Awards in 2017.
Sarah Tutton, DRWF Chief Executive, said: “Covid-19 has had a significant impact on our ability to provide support to people with diabetes through our Diabetes Wellness Event programme, in the last 10 months. Camp in the Cloud is an innovative way in which to reach children with type 1 diabetes, and their families, at a time when in-person activities are impossible. We are thrilled to be partnering with Over The Wall again in 2021 and look forward to providing some much-need fun, and respite, in what has been a really challenging period for us all. Places are limited, so I would actively encourage those wishing to secure a place, to get their application completed in good time before the deadline of 14th February.”
DRWF educational events during Covid-19 pandemic
We had hoped that our Diabetes Wellness Event programme would be up and running again in early 2021 however, the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and current restrictions are likely to prevent some of our planned activities going ahead, certainly in the first 3 months of the year. This is under constant review of course and will release updates to our plans as and when we are able to. In the meantime, if there is anything that we can do to help you, please do contact firstname.lastname@example.org.