Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Important Dates

Please use the "Contact Us" button above for questions on dates, times, or event details.

Camp Sessions

August 4-9, 2019

Camp Piankatank

1586 Stamper’s Bay Road

Hartfield, VA 23071

Friends + Family Days

Fall Friends + Family Day

November 17, 2018

Please contact us for more details!

Spring Friends + Family Day

April 27, 2019

Please contact us for more details!

Make the Magic

Tickets available now

Meet the Team

Clare “Canter” Yordy is so excited and honored to be director again at GMU! Canter is a junior government major and absolutely loves working with kids. She went to camp herself at Camp Kesem UVA for 10 years and loves being a part of the Kesem family. She does Kesem so kids who have been affected by a parents cancer never feel alone or unsupported. She can’t wait to put on the best camp ever!! Canter got her camp name because when she first went to camp she loved horses, the name just stuck!

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Dana “Icee” Kahle is a senior at GMU studying biology! She picked her camp name when she was 7 years old and a big fan of those iconic 7/11 drinks. Her favorite camp activity is gaga ball and she is so excited for camp this year!!

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Elizabeth “Gucci” McPherson is very excited to work with Camp Kesem! She is a junior, majoring in Cyber Security, and is extremely excited to officially have the name Gucci.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Julienne “Dumpling” Gatbonton currently is a senior at GMU majoring in Chemistry with concentration in Biochemistry. After deciding long and hard about her camp name with the help of her fellow kesem mates, she finally decided to go with dumpling because she is full of joy like a dumpling!

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Simran “Cinnamon” Dugh is a second year biology major and pre-med student who hopes to one day become a pediatric oncologist, and she thought this would be a great club to join in order to help her achieve her goals! Her camp name is Cinnamon because her dad calls her Cinnamon and her name sounds so close to it that people have actually mistaken her name for Cinnamon.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Izz “Totoro” LaMagdeleine: I am a sophomore studying communications and government. I really love my cat, Big Boy; Fourth Estate, the greatest newspaper in all of Mason; and music! I’m super excited to be on the cord board this year; this is gonna be so much fun!!

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Makayla “Mickey” Kowalski: Hello! I’m Makayla — aka Mickey. I am a freshman at George Mason University. I am originally from Arizona and moved to Virginia about five years ago. I have a Morkie (Maltese-Yorkie mix) that I love like she’s my child. I love volunteer work, and was so excited when I heard about Camp Kesem when I got to George Mason. This is my first year being involved in Kesem and can’t wait to see where it takes me!

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Robert “Bob the Builder” Sykes Jr.: It wasn’t a parent’s cancer that drew me to Kesem; it was the passion for Camp Kesem that a friend displayed. As I first started to get involved in Camp Kesem, I immediately felt the CK love; I had a great experience at camp and saw the impact it had on the campers. I didn’t want other children going through a parents cancer to miss out on this amazing opportunity. I was inspired to become an Outreach coordinator and increase the likelihood that other children can have this experience.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
George Mason
George Mason
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Zara “Shortcake” Asif is a senior at GMU studying bioengineering. She got the nickname Shortcake as a kid because her cousins thought she was short and sweet! This is her second year being a coordinator for CK and she can’t wait to get started!

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Brooke “Cookie” Lewitas: I’m a first year communication major with a concentration in Journalism and I’m from Long Island, New York.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Karl “Neptune” Ziegler: I am a junior at George Mason University majoring in Earth Science with a concentration in Geology and I have a minor in Paleontology. This will be my second year with Camp Kesem as I was a counselor for Kesem GMU last year. I play the alto saxophone in the GMU pep band called the Green Machine. I work part time at Panera to help pay for college. I like to play video games in my free time, but I also love to hike, camp, and just be outdoors. Also, I like long walks on the beach.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University
Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Our Supporters

In addition to the year-round support, services, and training we receive from Kesem National,
we are grateful to those who provide support to our local Camp Kesem chapter including:

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Our Advisory Board who provides ongoing guidance to our chapter’s leadership team.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Our corporate and foundation donors who provide critical resources to help fund the services we deliver locally.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

The many retail and service providers who offer in-kind support for our summer camp as well as many or our year-round services.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University

Countless individuals – including our families and friends who honor our commitment to Camp Kesem with their financial support and unwavering encouragement.

Community Partners

Walk with Sally

Kling Family Foundation

Nationwide Community

How Kesem National Supports This Chapter

Kesem’s national staff of over 30 professionals is involved in all aspects of establishing and supporting each of our 100+ chapters nationwide as well as the training and oversight of all college student leaders. Our leadership program has been developed over the last 17 years and, while both rigorous and demanding, is focused on providing the highest level of support, service and safety for the children who participate in our programs.

The Kesem Program Director for this chapter (see below) is involved in all aspects of camp and our additional services. While your local student leaders are your primary contact for questions, you are also welcome and encouraged to contact their Program Director with other specific questions.

Walk with Sally

Meet This Chapter's Program Director

Zach Snelling, Regional Program Director – zach@kesem.org
Zach Snelling, Regional Program Director – zach@kesem.org

Zach joined the Camp Kesem National staff in 2017 as a Regional Program Director. Before doing so, he served as Co-Director at the University of Richmond, where he graduated in 2017 with a B.A. in Environmental Studies. Originally from Boston, Massachusetts, Zach now resides in Washington, D.C.

Through and Beyond Support Services

Kesem Through and Beyond Support

Our free year-round services provide children impacted by a parent's cancer a continuum of touchpoints throughout the year.

Camp Kesem

Kesem's flagship program operates over 100 free summer camps in 40 states for children ages 6 to 18 who have been impacted by a parent's cancer.

Kesem
Warm Welcome

Kesem's care package program that immediately includes all families into our greater community in a personal, supportive manner.

Kesem
Friends + Family Day

Regular gatherings for existing and interested camper families, alumni, supporters and Kesem student leaders for a day of community building.

Kesem Connections

Provides Kesem families with regular updates including important deadlines and events.

Kesem By Your Side

Provides customized support for children through the many challenges associated with a parent or guardian's cancer journey.

Kesem
Special Deliveries

Provides all children with personalized greetings–delivered by either traditional or electronic mail.

Kesem
Online Resources

Provides online access to topical resources–including publications, books, organizations and resources.

Camp Kesem at George Mason University