In the words of a well-known politician, “It’s going to be HUGE!”
That’s the advance word on this summer at Camp Simcha/Camp Simcha Special, the overnight summer camp designed to meet the medical and social needs of children and teens with a wide variety of serious illnesses.
New Facilities Make Greater Enrollment Possible.
CS/CSS is gearing up for its largest enrollment, which is expected to reach 500 seriously ill campers. According to camp director Nachman Maimon, progress on the capital campaign to renovate the residential campus has made this possible.
“Each new cottage increases our capacity by eight campers during the summer,” he explained. This summer, the ninth cottage will open its doors. The dedication of two villages by Melodie and Martin Scharf of Lawrence and the Meridian Capital Group has provided resources to add flourishes in and around the cottages that make each village a true gathering place for camper divisions.
Campers will also find new electric doors at the entrances of the gym and canteen, which facilitates independence and mobility, particularly for those who use wheelchairs and walkers. The renovation of the gym building continues as well. Last year campers enjoyed a brilliant, colorful, candy-themed redo of the canteen; this year, the lavatories have been completed redesigned and rebuilt to be fully handicapped-accessible. Nachman called the new facilities “part of our mission to encourage and facilitate independence among our campers.”
Wireless Patient Monitors Keep Campers Healthy, Stable, Having Fun
The CSS medical staff is implementing a new wireless patient monitoring system akin to those found in hospitals. The system automatically notifies nurses of any changes in campers’ health status and allows them to intervene before a situation progresses.
Rivkah Reichmann, CSS associate director, explained that some CSS campers cannot regulate ordinary physical processes like their blood pressure or body temperature. While they are closely monitored by their counselors at all time, the wireless system will enable the nursing staff to see changes even before they are physically evident.
The medical staff anticipates that the new system will minimize the need to transfer children to other facilities. “Campers look forward to their CSS experience for an entire year. We don’t want them to miss a minute,” she said.