The ELPIDA Youth Summer Camp was successfully organised for the 2nd year running by the “ELPIDA” Association of Friends of Children with Cancer, with the support of the ELPIDA Youth Committee, at the facilities of “The Ranch” in Sofiko, Corinth, from 28 August to 6 September.
The ELPIDA Youth Summer Camp is a 10-day therapeutic programme for cured children aged 9-16 years old, aiming to improve their self-esteem and social skills.
Through a specially planned programme of activities, the children had the opportunity to have fun, explore, learn, leave their ‘comfort zone’ and expand their horizons, a step very important for their mental health according to all international studies.
The experienced ELPIDA team, headed by Mrs Anna Panagopoulou, Director of the ELPIDA Guest House and Mr Dimitris Nanis, the social worker of the Guest House, had organised a programme full of surprises for the young campers. Climbing, bungee jumping, trampoline, art workshops, mind games, karaoke, archery and biking were only some of the activities that entertained the children.
Famous artists and athletes also had the change demonstrate their heartfelt support again this year. “ELPIDA’S Messenger” Sakis Rouvas visited us for unique moments, as did Bo, the well-known signer.
On our side were also our Olympic and Paralympic medallists. Paralympic God medallist in weightlifting, Pavlos Mamalos, Olympic Bronze medallist in gymnastics, Eva Christodoulou, International Basketball player Theodoros Papaloukas, World Boxing Champion, Elena Platana and World Gymnastics Champion, Stavroula Samara,spent an entire day with the children inspiring them with their example.
We also thank the astronomers of the Athens Observatory, who organised for the young campers a star-filled night, with the special telescopes they brought providing the opportunity to children to learn everything they would like to know about stars and planets.
On the side of the children were also the members of the “ELPIDA Youth” Committee, who lovingly support this effort. Mrs Marianna Goulandris-Lemos, Laoura Lalaounis-Dragnis, Tatiana Blatnik, Alexia Vardinoyannis, Chrysi Vardinoyannis and Emily Vafeia, danced, sang and took pictures with the children.
A sincere thank you also to the Greek Red Cross, which made available two nurses and an ambulance throughout the duration of the camp, and to Dr Natalia Tourkantoni and Dr Marina Servitzoglou, doctors of the Marianna V. Vardinoyannis-ELPIDA Children’s Oncology Unit, for their support during these ten days.
We would like to particularly thank our 20 cured children who stayed with us for the second year in a row, and supported the young campers drawing from their personal experience.
We would also like to thank the employees and the Management of The Ranch, who hosted us for the second time, and cheerfully made sure that all the activities were impeccably organised.
Finally, a huge thank you to all the sponsors who supported our effort this year:
«The Hellenic Initiative», Zafeiris Fotiadis Music School, Stefanakis group, Eco imagination, Vikos, Zagori, Pizza Dominos, Dafermou, The Body Shop.
The smiles of happiness of our children give us the strength to continue!