PNWBD and The Hemostasis & Thrombosis Center at OHSU jointly provide a week-long summer camp for children with bleeding disorders and their siblings, ages 8-17.

The camp provides a safe opportunity for children to experience the outdoors and enjoy camp activities such as swimming, archery, and campfires. The camp is often the highlight in a young person’s life as they meet others with a bleeding disorder for the first time. They also learn about their bleeding disorder and are taught to manage their bleeding disorder throughout their lifetime.

Apart from the fact that these campers have a bleeding disorder, these kids are typical in every other respect. The weeklong camp also provides an opportunity for siblings to connect on a more personal level. Yet not long ago, the idea of a child with a bleeding disorder going away to summer camp seemed impossible. Many parents, doctors, and camp sponsors believed the risk of accident or injury was too great. However, this is no longer the case.

A positive “can-do” approach is encouraged rather than focusing on what a camper cannot do. Kids are not seen as children with a bleeding disorder during camp, but simply as kids who have a very unique medical condition. The campers are encouraged to hike, swim in the pool and the lake, play ga-ga ball, and learn arts and crafts. Cabin groups go on overnight campouts, walk in the woods, enjoy special evening activities, and conclude the day with a relaxing campfire! Campers participate as they are capable, each setting her or his own pace.

For more information or to attend PNWBD’s Summer Camp please contact our office. Become a member of PNWBD and receive exclusive information and invitations.