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Founded and run by Northwestern University student volunteers, Camp Kesem is a one-week, overnight summer camp for children in the Chicagoland area, ages 6-16  who have a parent who has died from cancer, is currently in treatment for cancer, or is in remission from cancer. Camp Kesem is a secular camp and is open to children of all races, religions, national origins, and financial statuses. It is free for all families served.

We seek to fill the gap in serving the special emotional needs of children of adult cancer patients that are often overlooked. Simply put: kids are often left to deal with these personal tragedies on their own; and if parents themselves are struggling with illness, their sons and daughters frequently miss the simple joys of childhood.  Camp Kesem builds self-confidence among its campers and provides them with a life-long community of peers facing similar situations.

The 2014 session was held at the JCC Rainbow Camp in Milwaukee, Wisconsin from June 15 to 20. We had an amazing session and can’t wait to see all of our families at the reunion in the fall!

Camp Kesem Northwestern 2015 will be held at the JCC Rainbow Day Camp in Milwaukee, Wisconsin June 14-19 and August 9-14.

We are in the process of planning Make the Magic 2015. Keep an eye out for updates and your invite! If you have any questions or would like to donate to the event, please contact

Interested in signing up a camper or have a child in mind who may benefit from Camp Kesem?

Click here to view our 2015 brochure

Click here to e-mail us with questions