A Revolutionary Idea

In 1975, the Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation came up with a revolutionary idea — a sleep-over summer camp program for children with chronic kidney disorders. The kidney campers receive dialysis treatments in the state-of-the-art Ruth Gottscho Dialysis Center located in the camp’s new Guenther Family Wellness Center.

Today, when you visit the Frost Valley YMCA camp in New York’s Catskill Mountains, you see hundreds of kids swimming, boating, horseback riding, playing volleyball and more. As you look around, you’d be hard-pressed to pick out those who receive dialysis treatments as part of their routine. And that’s the whole idea. During their two-week stay the focus is less on their disease and more on meeting new friends, participating in camp activities, and gaining self-confidence and self-esteem.


Take a moment to watch CBS video on the benefits of Camp

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“I’m able to associate with kids my own age.”

In 2015, Justino was a first-tine kidney camper with chronic kidney disease. His counselors were impressed with his outgoing personality and rapid adjustment to camp. After lunch in the camp dining hall, he was happy to explain why he liked Frost Valley so much.


“Can I go back next year, Mom?”

That was the first thing Patrick asked when he got home from the kidney camp program at Frost Valley. Since he was seven, Patrick has been hooked up three times a week to a dialysis machine that does the work his kidneys can’t. He was never able to be too far from home until he went off to sleep-away camp. “I noticed a big change in him when he came home,” said his mother. “He seems so independent now.”


“Frost Valley has been good for us both.”

That’s what Alisha’s mother said after her daughter’s first camp experience. Alisha was diagnosed with kidney disease when she was four years old. She never had much of a childhood; the hospital was her second home.
Dr. Rick Kaskel, Alisha’s doctor at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, is the medical director of the kidney camp program. He assured Alisha’s mother that Frost Valley offered the same, high-quality care that Alisha received at the hospital.

Alisha came home very excited about her two weeks at camp, and her mother benefitted as well. “Alisha was stronger than I gave her credit for. Her experience gave me courage and confidence, too.”


The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation

Our sleep-away camp program at the Frost Valley YMCA in the Catskills is the only one in the country where kids with kidney disorders get the dialysis/medications they need on-site and live with and do camp activities with regular campers. Since the program began in 1975, over 1,800 "kidney kids" have benefited from this life-changing experience. To donate, visit our website www.gottschokidney.org/donate
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation added 5 new photos.Monday, March 19th, 2018 at 10:57am
It's #NationalNursesDay! We have some amazing nurses at our kidney camp program and we want to let them know how much we love them! Help us to honor them by mentioning your favorite memory of your nurse at Frost Valley! Or post a pic in the comments below - showing appreciation for all the love and care they give every day.

#nursesarethebest #welovenurses #togetherwecan #curekidneydisease #partnership #frostvalley #montefiore #summercamp #kidneycamp
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney FoundationSaturday, March 17th, 2018 at 10:45am
Happy St. Patty's Day to you! May your days soon be filled with green grass and blue skies! And may you be lucky enough to go to Frost Valley this summer!
#wecantwaituntilsummer #summercamp #luckoftheirish #togetherwecan #curekidneydisease #partners #frostvalley #olympix #traditions
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation updated their cover photo.Friday, March 16th, 2018 at 1:17pm
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney FoundationFriday, March 16th, 2018 at 8:58am
We are grateful to work with so many wonderful people and kids. And we want to take the time to acknowledge our wonderful Registered Dietitians (even our own board member Leilani Viney)! They make sure our campers are healthy both at camp and away from camp. Thanks for all the wonderful work you do to make everyone around you healthy. Smiles all around!

#registereddietitiansday #healthyeating #healthyhabits #healthylife #summercamp #togetherwecan #curekidneydisease #thankyou #partnership
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney Foundation
The Ruth Gottscho Kidney FoundationTuesday, March 13th, 2018 at 9:05am
We are so fortunate to get to work with amazing children every single year who are going through life-changing situations. Nothing can prepare you for some of the side effects of kidney disease.

And it's not just children it affects - here is a very moving story that we are sharing in honor of #NationalKidneyMonth - we hope you enjoy as much as we did.

Wilson Du is living proof that sometimes when looking for a hero you find one within yourself. At age of 34 he went to the doctor because of pains in ankles and knees which turned out to be gout. But to his surprise, he was also diagnosed with stage 5 kidney disease and would need dialysis to live. He also learned that he was not eligible for a kidney transplant because of his weight. At 315 lbs. a kidney transplant was just not possible. Wheelchair bound and unable to exercise, Wilson took a first painful step outside. Taking a deep breath, he decided to choose life. He shares with Lori his incredible journey and how he transformed his life and health.


#renalwarrior #togetherwecan #curekidneydisease #powerwithin #livingproof #dialysis #transplant