Diabetes Camp Positively Affects Kids, Survey Shows

Attending diabetes summer camp can increase children’s diabetes knowledge, self-confidence, diabetes management, and emotional well-being, according to a new three-year survey by the American Diabetes Association.

The online survey, which was conducted between 2013 and 2015, indicated that the number of children with a “clear understanding of diabetes management” increased by 11% and the number with “the ability to manage diabetes-related problems independently” increased by 10% after attending an American Diabetes Association Camp. Those who had been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes within the year reaped the greatest benefits, with 19% of that group showing improvements in their ability to manage diabetes-related issues. The survey also showed that diabetes camps increased confidence and lowered diabetes-related stress in some campers.

Advertisement

To make sure as many children as possible have the opportunity to experience these benefits, Lilly Diabetes has announced a $93,000 donation for camp scholarships.

“The survey results show what we have known all along — our camps can have a positive impact on children with Type 1 diabetes who attend them,” noted Jane Chiang, MD, senior vice president, medical and community affairs for the American Diabetes Association. “For many families, Association camps may be the first time a child with diabetes has been away from home. We are grateful to Lilly Diabetes and others for providing the opportunity for campers to learn how to manage their diabetes, build their self-esteem, and gain independence.”

The American Diabetes Association provided 58 camp sessions for nearly 6,000 children in 2015. And since 2008, Lilly Diabetes has donated $716,000 to the Campership program, which provides diabetes camp scholarships to children based on financial need.

To learn more about American Diabetes Association Camps and how to apply for camp scholarships, see www.diabetes.org/camp. And to learn more about choosing a diabetes camp for your child, see the article “Countdown to Diabetes Camp.”

This blog entry was written by Senior Digital Editor Diane Fennell.