A Safe Haven for Kids Touched By Cancer

Camp Kesem Participants Han and Fei Ewald

Camp Kesem is a summer camp for kids who have or lost a parent with cancer. After losing their father to non-smokers lung cancer, Fei and Han Ewald, 16 and 14 respectively, are so grateful for their Camp Kesem experience and maintain that it is now an essential part of their lives.

“Family is the most comforting place on Earth where you can let your heart burst open and you don’t have to hide anything,” shares Han Ewald. “Family is Kesem.” He is grateful for having been welcomed into this second family that has helped him escape from stress and heartache while at the same time facing his problems.

Camp Kesem Participants (Han Ewald is second from right)
Camp Kesem Participants (Fei Ewald is second from right)

His sister, Fei, echoes this sentiment. She adds that the first year without her dad she put up walls but Kesem helped her be more open with herself and others. “Having such amazing people all around you in such a safe space works wonders.” She is happy to be more self-aware, more compassionate, and more understanding.  In her words, “the bottom line is, Kesem helps.  We laugh, we play, we talk, we grow, and we heal.”

Through the fundraising efforts of the Cancer Free Generation, Tower Cancer Research Foundation has provided Camp Kesem with $50,000 in grant funding over the last two years. This contribution has allowed Kesem to enroll more children like the  Ewalds by establishing a new camp site at the University of California Santa Barbara.

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