Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Important Dates

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

Camp Sessions

2019 Dates: TBD

Camp Holiday Trails

400 Holiday Trails Ln

Charlottesville, VA 22903

Friends + Family Days

Fall Friends + Family Day

November 3, 2018

Please contact us for more details!

Spring Friends + Family Day

March 23, 2019

Please contact us for more details!

Make the Magic

April 13, 2019 at 5:00pm

The Terrace at Rocktown

2061F Evelyn Byrd Ave

Harrisonburg, VA 22801

Tickets available now

Meet the Team

Emily “Percy” Walsh: I’m Percy, a senior biology and nursing major. My favorite camp memory is having a whole bottle of paint dumped on my head during messy games. Kesem is an incredible place where kids let loose and have fun, while being surrounded by people that support you in every way, and I want to continue giving that to others. I Kesem for all the kids that feel alone and confused because of their parent’s cancer, but I also Kesem for my dad who is my everyday inspiration.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Abby “Siesta” Smith: I’m Siesta and a sophomore health sciences major! I was a camper for five years and this organization is so amazing that i wanted to give back and help other kids like me and my sister grow and have such an amazing support system. I Kesem for my family members who have been affected by cancer, but i also Kesem for all the kids going through such a hard time. My favorite camp memory was going to camp and seeing how much all the kids grow in just a week and the family that forms along the way.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Caileigh “Plank” Pattisall: Hi my name is Plank! I’m a Social Justice major and a Communication minor, and this is my junior year at JMU! I love being a part of Kesem because we truly get the opportunity to have a positive impact on these kids’ lives, and maybe when they need it the most. My favorite part of camp is the inspiration I feel by just being around such brave and uplifting people. I Kesem because it reminds me that magic still exists in the world, even in the darkest of times.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Matt “Toto” Long: Hey guys! My name is Toto and I am a sophomore majoring in Psychology with two minors in Public Policy and Disability Studies. I kesem to show these kids that you can still find joy and happiness in one of the darkest times of life, as I was once in their shoes. My favorite thing at camp is seeing the kids laughing throughout the week, because it just never ends. This will be my second year at camp, and I can not wait to see what this year holds!

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Jess “Cheerio” Worrall: I’m Cheerio and a senior International Affairs Major. This is my second year that I get the wonderful opportunity to serve on the executive board for Camp Kesem and this year I get to take on a new challenge as being one of the Development coordinators! My favorite Kesem memory was being able to go to Summit last year where I got to learn all about Kesem and my position on exec. I can’t wait to to help send as many kiddos to camp as possible!

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Donovan “Spresso” Boyd: Hello all, my name is ‘Spresso! Here at James Madison I am a senior studying International Affairs and although this is my first year on the team I cannot wait to make some great memories with everybody involved in Kesem. I Kesem because it warms my spirit to be able to give back to individuals who have gone through something similar to what I have and at the bottom of my heart I love to let people know that they aren’t alone!

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Daniel “Kettle” Kipp: Hey y’all my name is Kettle! I’m a senior communications major with a minor in humanitarian affairs. I kesem for the children because they all deserve a week off to just be kids! My favorite camp memory was getting to be goofy during camp songs.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Liddie “Split” Knoche: Hello all, I’m a Hospitality Management major! I’m excited to learn what Kesem does for a community and how passionate my peers are about Kesem’s mission!

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Emily “Piglet” Borkowski: Hey guys! I’m Piglet and I am a junior Health Sciences, pre-OT major at JMU! This will be my second year at camp and I Kesem because I think it’s an incredible way to spread joy and light in the lives of those affected by cancer. My favorite part of camp is building relationships with the kiddos and other counselors.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Chris “Legend” Jones: Hey guys, I’m Legend! I am a Junior studying ISAT. I Kesem because I have close friends who have been affected by cancer and no one should have to deal with it alone. Cancer is such a terrible thing, but Kesem gives us the opportunity to form strong bonds, and create relationships that will last a lifetime. My favorite camp memory was playing on the tire swing with our campers in between activities, it a great way for us all to bond.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Erica “Fuzz” Butler: Hi! My name is Fuzz and I am a sophomore Communication Sciences and Disorders major with an Exceptional Education and Family Studies minor here at JMU! I’m so excited to be apart of the incredible Kesem family that provides a home to so many kids going through difficult times that my family has also gone through.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Lena “Bubbles” Harmata: Hello I’m Lena! I am a junior elementary education major from Alexandria, Virginia! I Kesem for everyone and anyone who has been impacted by cancer. As a cancer survivor I understand how cancer impacts those involved. I Kesem to make that impact into a positive experience. I Kesem to help families know they are not alone. I Kesem to give back to the community that saved my life.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Kathryn “Nanners” Heisig: I’m Nanners, a senior nursing major at JMU. My favorite thing about camp is how easy it is to call home in just one short, remarkable week. Camp brings out the best in every single person and it reminds me of how simple and effortless happiness can be. My favorite camp memories include constant dance parties and (of course) Messy Games. I Kesem for my Nana, for campers old and new, and for every kiddo who feels lost or alone when facing a loved one’s cancer. We all need somebody to lean on!

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
James Madison
James Madison
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Sam “Sandy” Lazarus: Hi! My name is Sandy and I am junior health science major with a pre OT track. I kesem to give children a place where they can let go and be who they want to be. My favorite camp memory is our morning dance parties with the campers. It was such a fun way to start the day!!

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

Dan “Ace” Baron: Hi, my name is Ace! I’m a senior Computer Information Systems and Marketing double major. I kesem because cancer is an awful thing to go through, and is something that has affected my family and friends. My favorite camp game was messy games.

Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison University
Camp Kesem at James Madison 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 James Madison University

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

Camp Kesem at James Madison University

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

Camp Kesem at James Madison 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 James Madison 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

Hannah DePriest, Regional Program Director – hannah.depriest@kesem.org
Hannah DePriest, Regional Program Director – hannah.depriest@kesem.org

Hannah joined the Camp Kesem National team as a Regional Program Director in April 2019. She first fell in love with the organization while attending University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where she served as an Alumni, Marketing, and PR Coordinator for one year and Co-Director for two. During her time as a student she also served as a Camp Advisor, Camp Prep Volunteer, Funder Prospect Research Intern and on the National Student Panel. She will graduate in May from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Bachelor of Journalism in Advertising and Public Relations. From Omaha, Nebraska, she will reside in Chicago, Illinois, and can often be found enjoying the outdoors, drinking coffee or exploring new breakfast restaurants.

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 James Madison University