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Going to a Non-Diabetic camp..Yes or No??

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by hmschlng24god, Mar 25, 2010.

  1. hmschlng24god

    hmschlng24god Approved members

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    This year my son is old enough to attend our church camp. He has known about the camp since before his dx and he really wants to go. But I am just not sure about sending him. This obviously is not his diabetic run camp that he went to last year. They do have a nurse that will be going and she has offered to learn everything but should I put that on her? Is it right for me to put all that responsibility onto her? She would have to do it all. Is it posssible for our kids to go to a normal camp???

    Has anyone else dealt with this? How do I handle this? I am meeting with our Childrens Director next week to discuss the camp. Any tips would be helpful.
     
  2. hdm42

    hdm42 Approved members

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    I think if the nurse is willing and the camp administration is on board, then go for it.
    Does he do his own care, for the most part? If so, I would think this is a great opportunity for him to gain a little independence and confidence with D.
    Obviously pack him lots of D supplies along with a cell phone that he can use anytime to call you. You can also use the cell phone to call him to check on numbers or even set alarms on it to remind him to test.

    Having said all that, I do have to admit that it would be hard for me to send my son to a non-D camp, so I can certainly understand any hesitation you might have.:)
     
  3. momandwifeoftype1s

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    We're sending Connor to a non-diabetic camp for the first time this summer. The day camp is at a private school with a full-time nurse, but he'll be with children who do not have diabetes. I called to talk to the camp director to make sure that he would be able to attend safely. Every child who attends that school during the regular school year has an IEP, so I am confident that they are used to treating every child as unique with specific needs. I am hopeful that things will go smoothly, but I am nervous. :eek: He will also be going to diabetes camp later in the summer. So - both types of camp for Connor this year.
     
  4. hmschlng24god

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    Thanks for your responses. I have talked with the nurse briefly and she said she is fine with it, as long as I give her more training and a basic schedule. Which I am glad to do.
    I haven't talked with the Director from our Childrens department yet. I meet with her next week. I have worked with her before and she already knows about my son and knows of his medical issues. So I don't think it will be a problem. I am just not sure about his meals and how they supervise those. Everything will have to be measured, counted etc.. I was thinking of tryng to get a menu of meals and snacks and have everything already written out with serving sizes and carb counts. That should make it easier on the nurse. And maybe send our own snacks that I know what the counts are so I don't have to worry about miscalculations on those.
    I also have no idea about the activities they are going to be doing. UGhhh- so many details. Thanks for letting me vent.
     
  5. LJS118

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    Is it a sleep away camp or a day camp? If its a day camp I say go for it! Ryan has gone to day camps (soccer camps) and its been great...just let the counselors know exactly what to expect. If its an overnight I'd be worried about it myself, but if you have someone who's willing to learn then try it...just make sure you're accessible by phone.
     
  6. hmschlng24god

    hmschlng24god Approved members

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    Yes- it is an overnight camp. They leave from our church on Sunday afternoon and will return on Saturday afternoon. It is only 1 1/2 hours from where we live so we are fairly close if something major happened. He has a cell phone so he could call me at any time. It just worries me so much. His numbers have been excelent the past month since we started on the pump and he gets easily discouraged when he has alot of lows and highs. I am afraid with all the extra activity, excitement and others monitoring his food intake he will have crazy numbers and then not enjoy camp. Lots to consider. Not sure what to do.
     
  7. Toni

    Toni Banned

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    Overnight camp. Why not the D camp? I'm not sure I would trust someone who has not dealt with D with the responsibility.
     
  8. slpmom2

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    When my dd wanted to go to a non-D camp last summer, I met with the medical director to have a frank discussion about what D management really looked like on a day-to-day (and night-to-night) basis. He and I both thought that they could probably handle the daytime (though I was a little less certain about the carb counting), but that asking the one nurse to manage the middle of the night, as well, was too much. I was also concerned about what would happen if there was a rush of sick kids that the nurse had to deal with - would she be available to follow up with my dd appropriately?

    In the end, I went to camp with her. My goal was to stay out of her way as much as possible, and I trained her counselors about some of the basics, but then I showed up at meals, followed-up during the day if needed, and stopped by overnight. I had a walkie-talkie in case they needed to reach me when I wasn't there. It worked out well, and I realized that there really was no way they could have handled it well if I weren't there; there's just too much uncertainty, variability, and need for common sense judgment that you can't get from an hour or two of training. When dd is older and more independent, it will be a different story, but not for now.

    This summer dd is going to the same camp for 2 weeks. Right now my plan is to be there again, but I'm working on seeing if I can get someone else to go. Friends of mine with two kids with t1D have a nanny who has worked with them for years, and who is now a nurse. She went to this camp with their two kids last summer for two weeks, and is going again this summer. Unfortunately, our schedules prevented our kids from all being there at the same time, but I'm looking into hiring this woman to go with my dd, as well. At this stage, though, I really feel like she needs someone there whose only job is keeping her healthy and safe.

    Good luck figuring it out!
     
  9. jules12

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    My son goes to church camp which is overnight. My husband goes as a counselor and stays in his cabin. Is there anyway one of you could be a volunteer/helper?
     
  10. sam1nat2

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    overnight--NO way, at least not for me or my kid!!

    I spent many summers at over night camp growing up and some of my bff are from there, it saddens me that Sam can't have that kind of experience.

    One of my camp friends had a CWD and she is on the same page as me.

    As much as we'd like to think the counselors are oh so responsible, bottom line is most are college students and they like to party at night. There were a few accidents at camp, some very serious. They were able to handle those, but taking a kid to get stitches takes less concentration than trying to figure out why the kid is high, or how many carbs to treat the low etc.

    Jus my personal opinion. Sucks, but I don't think its worth it
     
  11. chbarnes

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    It depends. We let Chris go overseas with a group of kids and no medical personnel at age 11. He did fantastic. But we knew there were risks.
    I think it depends on your child's self-management skills, and the willingness of the nurse and camp staff to learn. It might also make a difference if overnight testing is necessary.
    I would look for ways to make it possible, but recognize a lot has to measure -up before it can happen.
    Chuck
     

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