Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Important Dates

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

Camp Sessions

July 28 – August 3, 2019

YMCA Camp Benson

16355 Scenic Palisades Rd

Mt Carroll, IL 61053

Friends + Family Days

Fall Friends + Family Day

2019 Dates: TBD

Spring Friends + Family Day

May 5, 2019

Please contact us for more details!

Make the Magic

April 13, 2019 at 6:00 pm

Pinstripes

435 East Illinois Street

Chicago, IL 60611

Tickets available now

Meet the Team

William “Pluto” Danziger: My name is Pluto. I am a senior studying bioengineering. My favorite camp memory is when I got to meet my friend Bubba the alligator.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Jenna “Spud” Goeke: My name is Spud and I am a junior majoring in health communication. I am a former camper and an interesting fact about me is that I went to Iceland this summer.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Magie “Ladybug” Vacchiano:My name is Ladybug and I am so excited to be co-Director this year! Last year I was outreach co-chair. I am studying biology on a pre-med track with the hopes of becoming a doctor one day. My favorite part of camp is definitely post-meal dance parties!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Nick “Groot” Ferguson: I am Groot. I’m a junior studying advertising. My favorite camp memory is color wars!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Olivia “Avocado” Ottenfeld: My name is Avocado! I am a junior majoring in advertising with a minor in public relations. My favorite part of camp is cabin chats and spontaneous dance parties!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Patrick “Cookie” Cooke: My name is Cookie and I am a sophomore studying actuarial science. A fun fact about me is that I play the accordion!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Antonio “Seabiscuit” Elizondo: My name is Seabiscuit. I am a junior majoring in atmospheric sciences. A fun fact is that I’ve skydived from 12,000 feet!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Michael “Genie” Adegoke: My name is Genie and I am a senior majoring in community health! This will be my fourth year of camp and my second year as MTM coord!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Maddie “Swizzle” Atwood: Hi I am Swizzle! I am a junior majoring in elementary education. My favorite camp memory is the talent show.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Sebastian “Luigi” Valdes: My name is Luigi! I am a junior majoring in environmental science/sustainability. This is going to be my 3rd year at camp, and my favorite activity is messy games!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Brooke “Nala” Frazier: My name is Nala and I am a junior in MCB! My favorite camp memory is helping the young girls cabin make a talent show skit.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Clark “Superman” Stevens: Hi I am Superman and I am a junior majoring in music performance! A fun fact about me is that I am distantly related to Princess Diana.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Grace “Thumper” Morgenthaler: My name is Thumper! I am a junior working towards a masters in social work. My favorite camp memory would be messy games.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Annie “Cleo” Czerwinski: My name is Cleo! I’m a junior studying molecular and cellular biology and minoring in chemistry. My favorite camp memory is dancing like crazy at the camp dance!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Megan “Meena” Parod: My name is Meena! I’m a senior studying molecular and cellular biology. My favorite part of camp was messy games!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Illinois
Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Jack “Costco” Burke: My name is Costco. My name used to be Kuzco, but the campers decided to change it to Costco. I am a junior majoring in engineering!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Nick “Marlin” Lombardo: My name is Marlin and I am a senior majoring in MCB. This will be my 3rd year at camp and my 2nd on exec.

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

Bri “Nani” Oldenburg: My name is Nani and I am a junior majoring in kinesiology. This will be my 3rd year of camp and my 2nd year as the volunteer coord!

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois
Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

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 University of Illinois

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

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

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

Camp Kesem at University of Illinois

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 University of Illinois

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 Montoya, Regional Program Director – hannah.montoya@@kesem.org
Hannah Montoya, Regional Program Director – hannah.montoya@kesem.org

Hannah joined the Camp Kesem National team as a Regional Program Director in 2019. Her passion for Kesem began when she joined the founding team at Brown University, where she served as an Alumni, PR, Marketing coordinator, Volunteer Coordinator, Operations Coordinator, and Chapter Co-Director her senior year. During this time, she also served as a Junior Camp Advisor and Camp Preparation Volunteer. Hannah graduated from Brown University in 2019 with a degree in Public Health. Originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, she now resides in Chicago, Illinois.

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 University of Illinois