Camp Wheez is a day camp each year in August for elementary school children, grades 1-6 with chronic asthma, providing them with a camp experience designed for their special needs. It is free of charge and open to the community. Campers learn about their asthma while they participate in recreation and arts and crafts. Parents attend a brief workshop which provides an update on asthma care and a time to have their questions answered by an asthma specialist, followed by a play presented by the children.
Dr. Myron Liebhaber founded Camp Wheez in 1977 in collaboration with the American Lung Association. Continuing today, Dr. Liebhaber, other medical professionals, and community members volunteer their time to teach children how to manage their asthma while they get to experience good old-fashioned camp fun!
Summary of Camp Wheez 2014
Sansum Clinic hosted 40 children at the 2014 CampWheez, August 4 – 8 in Santa Barbara. CampWheez is a day camp for elementary school children ages 6 – 12 with chronic asthma, providing a camp experience designed for their special needs. The camp provides asthma education, physical development skills, arts and craft projects and good old-fashioned camp fun!
Head Camper is Dr. Myron Liebhaber who started CampWheez over 37 years ago. Dr. Liebhaber often entertains the campers with his magic tricks. Of course, the magic goes both ways says Dr. Liebhaber, “I consider CampWheez a wonderful opportunity to interact with children and families. I watch the children grow and gain competency in their asthma management in a fun environment. Camp Wheez has made me the oldest and happiest camper.”
Highlights from camp included all kinds of games, from kick-ball and limbo to Asthma Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. Making sock puppets and duck tape wallets in crafts and silly putty in science lab were also popular attractions. Families appreciated the option for their child to take the Easy Lift bus from CampWheez to the Santa Barbara Downtown Boys & Girls Club for an extended day. The parents of the campers also learned the latest about asthma by attending a lunch-and-learn hosted by Dr. Liebhaber and Dr. Jinny Chang.
CampWheez is open to the community and free of charge thanks to a great many volunteers and supporters. In total, almost 1,000 volunteer hours are donated to make CampWheez possible. A big thank you goes out to the CampWheez team including:
First Baptist Church
Cottage Health System Respiratory Therapy
Santa Barbara Downtown Boys & Girls Club
Anu Sharma, MD
Laurel Mehler, MD
Saida Hamdani, MD
Suzanne Michaud, CenCal Health
Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics
City of Santa Barbara Police Department
18 local high school students, our counselors
Sansum Clinic Providers & Staff:
- Myron Liebhaber, MD
- Jinny Chang, MD
- Margaret Weiss
- Yolanda Pandolfi
- Jill Searchinger
- Christopher Williams
- Dru Hartley
- Oscar Colunga
- Petra Beumer
- Carrie Yamate
- And many others helping behind the scene
Sansum Clinic wishes to thank the Swanton Foundation, Marcel Sassola and Santa Barbara Specialty Pharmacy and the many individual donors who make it possible for us to provide CampWheez free of charge. It is an honor serving our littlest community residents.
Dr. Myron Liebhaber discusses current medical treatment for asthma, various allergies and cystic fibrosis, and describes his summer day camp for kids who learn how to deal with their breathing disorders while having fun in this video from Just Between Us! Interviews with Co-Hosts Actor/Director William Smithers & Author/Teacher Lorrie Hull Smithers.
The rapid evolution of medical treatments and technologies, and soaring costs, continue to increase the challenges to healthcare today. We rely on private support so that we may continue our commitment to the healthcare needs of our community for programs such as Camp Wheez. If you would like to support the good health of our community by making a gift to Sansum Clinic, please click on the DONATE NOW button, or download this mail in donation form, or call us at (805) 681-7726. Thank you.
For more information about this program, please contact Dru A. Hartley, Director of Philanthropy, at (805) 681-7726 or firstname.lastname@example.org