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The one hundred honoree: Camp Casco

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Camp Casco

Mass General Giving

Getting away from hospitals and doctors’ offices and spending a week just having fun can heal parts of a child that even the most cutting-edge cancer treatments cannot. And now, pediatric cancer patients can have that experience in Massachusetts, thanks to Camp Casco.

Founded in 2014, Camp Casco hosts a free sleep-away camp for cancer patients and survivors, ages 7-17, at the YMCA Berkshire Outdoor Center in Becket, Massachusetts. With experienced camp counselors and round-the-clock medical staff, the camp allows children to participate in traditional camp activities, such as swimming, canoeing, archery, arts and crafts, campfires and more. Campers are encouraged to rise above their diagnosis, shed their insecurities and build lifelong friendships with peers who share their struggles with cancer. And most importantly, just be kids.

Prior to moving to Boston three years ago to attend Harvard University, Erin Fletcher volunteered at Camp Reach for the Sky in San Diego. The success of this program led Erin to co-found Camp Casco with Michael Goldberg, PhD, a researcher at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute dedicated to developing novel cancer therapies.

Hosting 28 campers for one week every August, the camp provides personalized attention and each year adopts a theme. Its first-year theme, Superheroes!, inspired the kids to recognize and tap into their inner superpowers of resilience, positivity and courage.