Through Camp programs, year-round outreach to hospitals and ongoing services the Camp serves more than 20,000 seriously ill children and family members annually - all completely free of charge.
The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp Fund
Founded in 1988 by Paul Newman, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp provides "a different kind of healing" to more than 20,000 seriously ill children and family members annually - all completely free of charge. For many of these children and families, Hole in the Wall provides multiple Camp experiences throughout the year at the facility in Ashford, Conn., in more than 40 hospitals and clinics, directly in camper homes and communities, and through other outreach activities across the Northeast.
Camp's programs are designed to restore normalcy, nurture powerful friendships and supportive social networks, and challenge perceived limitations associated with pediatric illnesses. This is accomplished through an integrated "Camp-Around Care" model to engage children and families throughout the year. Camp provides seamless year-round programming to support families through the illness process. Our programs have a unique healing impact on the seriously ill children and families we serve.
Camp’s signature summer program consists of 7 week long sessions for seriously ill children and one session for siblings of children with serious illnesses. Children aged 7 to 15; with a diagnosis of malignancy, genetic blood disorder, HIV or metabolic disorders, residing in New England, New York and New Jersey attend sessions 1-7 During the summer of 2017 Camp welcomed 1,111 children to our summer camping sessions.
Camp continues to work with NORD (National Organization for Rare Disorders) to identify children and families living with rare illnesses in need of a Camp experience. In June Camp welcomed campers and their families for a four-day rare disease Family Camp. The second 4-day Family Camp takes place in September. This Family Camp welcomes back children and families living with Progeria. Progeria, also known as Hutchinson-Gilford Progeria Syndrome (HGPS), is a rare genetic condition that causes a child’s body to prematurely age. New this year, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp is working with the Aplastic Anemia and MDS International Foundation to provide a weekend for these children and families. Aplastic Anemia is characterized by bone marrow failure. The Aplastic Anemia and Bone Marrow Failure Family Weekend will take place in October.
Family weekends allow families to bond with each other and experience the simple joy of being together away from the day-to-day medical stresses they face. The weekends also offer a needed opportunity for families to forge new friendships with kindred spirits who share common hardships and hopes.
Since its founding in 1988 the Camp has evolved from a summer program to a vibrant year-round community that operates both onsite and regional programs throughout the Northeast. Our organizational growth has and continues to be inextricably linked to the diverse needs of the children and families in our care. Parent-specific programs were added in the early 1990s, followed shortly by family retreats during weekends throughout the spring and fall. In 2002, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp launched its Hospital Outreach Program, which extend the hope and healing power of Camp to hospitalized children across the Northeast. Altogether, Camp’s year-round program offerings enable a continuity of care that seamlessly engages children, families, and healthcare professionals.
The programs of The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp are designed to enhance peer support networks and strengthen the social and emotional capital of the children and families in our care. The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp maintains scalable and sustainable program growth designed to preserve our core values - safety, camaraderie, possibility, appreciation - while expanding services impacting the lives of more children, families, and healthcare professionals each year.
We accomplish our funding goals through specific action steps related to event fund raising, individual gifts, capital campaigns, a corporate sponsorship program, event auction income, foundation grants, external events sponsored by organizations, web site contributions, planned giving, stewardship and gift processing and reporting. Contrary to popular belief, more than 98% of our operating support is derived from sources other than Newman's Own.