Over the last year, Camp Hendon has made an intentional effort to grow and strengthen our Board of Directors. We are excited to welcome new members, as well as newly elected officers, to the Camp Hendon Board of Directors. First, a note from our outgoing Chairperson, Rhiannon Reams:
It has been an honor to serve as Camp Hendon’s Board Chair for the last two years. I am so happy for our many accomplishments over the past couple of years. We have been able to host camp both virtually and in-person despite all challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to hosting camp, we also established a new strategic plan, hired a Fund Development Manager, and continued to grow our volunteer workforce. We have expanded our board by five new members, and with their help, I can’t wait to see what new and exciting things we accomplish. Camp Hendon is such a huge part of ours and many others peoples' lives, and I can’t wait to see what is in store for the future. I am also excited to welcome Dr. Michael Foster into the role of Board Chairperson. There are few people more passionately dedicated to improving the lives of youth with Type 1 Diabetes.
Camp Hendon's newest Board Members include Andrew Dawson, Susan Lugo, Wendy Novak, and Paul Schneider. Their diverse areas of expertise are welcome additions to the team. We are also pleased to recognize Tonya Lucas in her dual role as Vice Chairperson and Treasurer, and Leslie Scott who continues for a new term as Secretary. To learn more about our newest members, visit Our Team.
What made you decide to volunteer at Camp Hendon and how long have you been volunteering?
My dream career when graduating from nursing school and starting my journey at Norton Children’s Hospital was to be a diabetes educator. When I heard there was a camp dedicated to children with diabetes, I knew this was the place for me. I wanted to be able to learn as much as possible from the kiddos served at camp so that I could pass along their knowledge and skills to the families and children at Norton Children’s Hospital. I want to be the best educator I possibly can be, and this starts by learning from those that live with diabetes every single day. I am inspired by my friends at camp, the young AND the more experienced. I have been going to camp for most of the past several years.
What is your role at camp?
My role at camp is a Registered Nurse and Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist. AKA overseer of the medicines, insulin, tacklebox, and clipboard.
Why do you come back year after year? What do you get from camp or how has it impacted your life?
I think I addressed part of this in the first question, but every year I learn more about the impact of diabetes on the everyday life of our families. This equips me to better educate the families I see in the hospital on how to manage the diabetes after they are home from the hospital. I come back each year to keep up my learning. Camp is when I get the most hands on experience with technology of diabetes (CGM’s and Pumps). I also have the pleasure of talking with campers about their diabetes so that I understand more the feelings and emotions behind their diabetes which helps me to grow as an educator as well.
What is your favorite activity at camp and why?
My favorite camp activity has to be….gosh…this is a hard question!!! The entire week is packed full of so many incredibly fun activities. I definitely love to watch the talent show and enjoy the dancing. The nature hike though, that’s my jam. Playing in the water and being close to nature, I love that part of camp.
What are some things you have learned or taken away from camp?
I learn how to be a better person and a better diabetes educator by going to camp every year. I know how to teach the families at the hospital the skills and knowledge necessary to keep their family member or themselves safe and healthy at home because of everything I learn at diabetes camp.
What do you do in your real life when you’re not giving your time to Camp Hendon?
I am a mom of 3 lovely children ages 11, 5, and 2! They keep me quite busy, but I love planning adventures for our family. We will be going to Disney World this spring break! I also love to cook and bake, sometimes the family likes my experiments, and sometimes they don’t. Our newest favorite is cabbage steaks! We are in the process of building a house! We will hopefully be moved in sometime this spring which is super exciting!!
Do you have any skills or talents that many may not know about you?
I can play Mario like you wouldn’t believe. I’m also pretty good at Crash Bandicoot and Spyro if I may say so myself. (: