Giving Back to Camp Kesem

Camp Kesem at SUU will be participating in the global day of Giving Tuesday held on Nov. 27.

Giving Tuesday originally started in 2012 and is an international day to give back. The holiday is celebrated the Tuesday following Thanksgiving and allows community members to give back to honorable organizations such as Camp Kesem.

Camp Kesem is a nationwide non-profit organization that is devoted to supporting children whose parents are or were diagnosed with cancer. Each year Camp Kesem hosts a week-long summer camp full of activities that help kids have a feeling of normality.

The camp is organized and ran by college leaders and helped more than 7,300 kids nationwide in 2017. In 2018, the SUU Chapter was able to host 113 children.

“Camp Kesem is the only safe place where my child can share their experience of loss and grief with other kids who can relate to their feelings,” an anonymous SUU Chapter camper parent said.

With Giving Tuesday coming up this week, Camp Kesem hopes to fundraise $5,000 to help pay for more children to attend their camp.

“It’s easy to get caught up in the amount of money to fundraise,” Jason Hailes, Development Co-coordinator for SUU Camp Kesem, said. “When I stop and think about the number of children I am fundraising for it becomes more meaningful to me knowing that for every $500 raised we are able to send another child to camp. It means that another child doesn’t suffer through their parent’s cancer alone.”

When someone chooses to donate to the SUU Chapter of Camp Kesem, they will get a personal experience to see how their donation impacts a specific child.

“Each year during the week of camp, donors are able to visit the campers and see what goes on at camp,” Hailes said. “We also keep in contact with donors and keep them updated with pictures and videos of campers so they can have a personal connection with those they are helping.”

All donations made on #givingtuesday will allow more kids to attend the camp. To donate to the SUU chapter of Camp Kesem, click here.

Camp Kesem is always looking for more volunteers to help. Anyone interested in volunteering can email If any family is looking to get their children involved in the SUU Camp Kesem, contact

Story by: Easton Bowring
Photos courtesy of Camp Kesem