Camp Okawehna

Camp O

We are highlighting transplant camps for the month of June.

For the third week of June we are highlighting Camp Okawehna near Nashville, Tennessee.

Camp Okawehna was founded in 1974 by Dialysis Clinic, Inc., (DCI), in order to  promote the overall wellbeing of pediatric renal patients and their families by supporting them in developing lives that are as normal as possible under the circumstances.

Typically held during the second full week in June,  Camp Okawehna provides everything, from accommodations, food, non-stop fun-filled activities and on-site medical facilities. Every effort is made to accommodate children with special needs, including those who are hearing or visually impaired, those with rigid dietary requirements, or individuals in wheelchairs. The campground, Cedar Crest Camp, is wheelchair accessible and transportation is provided by the shuttle bus.

Camp activities throughout the week include a ropes challenge course, canoeing, swimming, daily crafts projects, “themed” dances (including a prom), concerts on the lawn, a pine-wood derby car race, and the traditional Camp Okawehna Talent Show. Special events that have taken place in previous years include an on-site carnival as well as other corporate sponsored activities. Campers are expected to participate in activities as much as physically possible. Camp activities are geared to be fun but totally wholesome and to promote independence and growth on the part of the individual camper. This helps the camper develop a trusting relationship in a new environment, explore their full potential, and learn more about themselves.

Here’s what future campers need know:

·         Camp Okawehna is in Lyles, Tennessee, about 50 miles outside of Nashville.

·         The camp welcomes approximately 100 children from around the US ages 6-18 who have a kidney transplant or are receiving treatment for kidney failure.

·         We offer on-site hemodialysis in the Stix unit and peritoneal dialysis is provided in the lodge. Children with a transplant are assigned a counselor who will ensure all medications are taken as scheduled.

·         We have incredibly talented and dedicated staff that attend each year. We have doctors and nurses available 24/7 during camp.

·         The camp is designed for the child and not the entire family. We believe the children need the freedom to visit and share with other children who understand exactly what they are experiencing. We often hear that this is the best part of camp (making friends that understand what they are going through).

·         Children are given the opportunity to explore a variety of activities, including: swimming, canoeing, fishing, ropes course, zip lining, field games, archery, arts and crafts, derby race, an extensive carnival, circus show, and a fully decorated prom with gowns tailored to each girl.

·         The cost to attend camp is $65 for the week, however, if a child cannot afford registration, we have scholarships available. No child is excluded for inability to pay.

·         Camp is typically held during the second full week in June.

Registration information can be found under “forms” at http://www.dciinc.org/campo/.

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