Residential and day camps for children living with HIV, filled with fun with intention and purpose to help build lives, to be magical and to allow children to be children and not mere patients. The Therapeutic Recreational model uses child centric approaches and child behaviour management techniques
YRGCARE has been offering special clinics to children living with HIV since 1997. Children attending these clinics learn about HIV through arts and crafts, indoor games and puppetry. Children receive gift hampers and prizes that encourage them to adhere to future clinic visits.
Building further on this initiative, YRGCARE began to offer Camp Rainbow, in 2011. These camps help children living with HIV and their families reach beyond illness, to discoverjoy, confidence and a chance to recover their childhood. It restores their hope and renew their sense of possibility.Thus,children attending Camp Rainbow are not only better able to manage their illness, but also better able to thrive socially and emotionally on their way to becoming healthy, self-confident adults.
In these 5-day residential camps, campers participate in life skills training and traditional camp activities that enhance campers’ understanding of HIV, their own health condition, lifestyle changes, medications and adherence to treatment. Most importantly camping rekindles their spirit of joy and curiosity and enhances their self-esteem and social connectedness. Camp Rainbow improves their quality of life. Campers have fulfilling experiences, are eager to participate and meet with new friends. The children have tons of fun and have the chance to recover their childhood, restore their hope and renew their sense of possibility. Camp Rainbow rebuilds confidence and promotes individuality through laughter, exploration and friendship. Campers are nurtured by their peers and our staff, and they are encouraged to challenge themselves in the best ways possible. It transforms children from patients to fun-loving, capable, thriving kids!
Between 2011-13, Camp Rainbow Chennai and Mysore served 364 campers through 5-day residential camps,conducted capacity building sessions for over 100 adults and organized regular follow up programs within the districts throughout the year.
YRGCARE, through its India Partnership Program (IPI), works with over 30 NGOs, Positive Networks and Universities on camps, camper outreach, capacity building, mentorship and evaluation. Currently, the IPI’s focus is on serving children with HIV and AIDS. Each year, the number of children served increases and our goal is to serve 300 children in 2015. Volunteers drawn from healthcare providers and students receive instructions in child-centric techniques that provide children living with serious illnesses a fun filled experience through interactive, structured intentional programming.
Camp Rainbow is part of Seriousfun Children’s Network Global Partnership Program (SFCN-GPP) that covers 13 countries inAfrica, Asia, South America and the Caribbean.
In 1988the legendary actor Paul Newman, founder of SeriousFun Children’s Network (SeriousFun), had an idea: Imagine if kids with serious illnesses had the chance to, as he used to like to say, “kick back and raise a little hell.” A camp was born in the United States and then a global movement – the Global Partnership Program (GPP) – that connects 13 countries in Africa, Asia, South America and the Caribbean, serving children with serious illnesses where medical and psychosocial needs often outstrip the available local resources. SeriousFun helps create opportunities for children and their families to reach beyond serious illness and discover joy, confidence and a new world of possibilities, always free of charge.