And sometimes fishing happens

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There are times at camp when someone might not want to surf. Or they just physically can’t. They may, however, be able to lay on a paddleboard and snorkel-fish!

This is what happened at our most recent camp. Santar didn’t have the strength to surf. He had recently undergone treatment, and weakness permeated through his body. This is quite common at camp, but Camp Koru offers activities that anyone can do, even while lying down. So that’s what Santar did.

While Santar pointed out fish from the surface on the paddleboard, one of our surf guides, Ola, swam and speared fish below. It was great teamwork and symmetry, and a beautiful celebration of connecting with the ocean. Santar brought fish back to camp and like a true local — we ate freshly caught fish over a fire.

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Attempting to scale and filet the little buggers.
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“An experience on Mt. Hood during Camp Koru turned my world around.”

Samantha and the Mountains

“When I look out across the Willamette Valley and see the those little white triangles peaking over the hills, my heart skips a beat. My soul is connected to them. An experience on Mt. Hood during Camp Koru turned my world around.

Samantha finds solace in nature“I have learned that it is not the mountain I must conquer, but myself and I continue to look to the mountains for healing. Everyone has their own mountain to conquer. Mine just happened to be cancer” – surfboard artist Samantha Newton.

Her board will be auctioned off at Boards of Hope in a little bit – at 6:30 pm here at KB4c.

Team Duke Athletes for Cancer Surf Camp invites survivors to surf, connect, and live.

The John Wayne Cancer Foundation and Team Duke is committed to helping young lives affected by cancer to find life again by partnering with  Athletes for Cancer to underwrite our third survivorship camp this April. We still have a couple spots left and are accepting applications for these camps NOW. For complete camp info, check out our Programs.

  • April 1-7, 2012 – Team Duke A4C Surf & SUP Camp : Maui, Hawaii

Other camps in 2012: 

  • November 1-7 –  Surfing & Standup Paddlesurfing : Maui, Hawaii
  • November 11-17 –  Surfing & Standup Paddlesurfing : Maui, Hawaii
About the Team Duke A4C Camp:
Athletes 4 Cancer is focused on renewing, rebuilding, and restarting lives after cancer. We do this through adventure-therapy retreats that promote a healthy model for survivorship. These retreats utilize a combination of adventure challenges, connection to the natural elements, and building strong peer relationships through the experience. And most of all, have fun doing it.

Survivorship Requirements

  • ALL LEVELS of physical abilities are welcome to apply!!
  • cancer fighters and survivors between the ages of 18 and 40 at time of application
  • cancer diagnosis must be after 15th birthday
  • submission and approval of survivor application
  • submission and approval of A4C medical form,  completed and signed by doctor
  • airfare/transportation to the nearest airport of camp destination is attendee’s responsibility, but food, accommodations, transportation during camp, instruction, and all necessary gear is covered for the week once at camp.

A4C Adds Snowboarding to our Survivorship Program! First camp is April 15-21!

We’ve been empowering adolescent and young adult cancer survivors to find healing and life-renewal through surfing and the natural healing of the ocean environment. Now, we’re taking our model to the mountains for… snowboarding!

Teaming up with Mt. Hood Meadows Ski & Snowboard School to provide professional snowboarding instruction and support, and Cooper Spur for accommodations, Athletes for Cancer will run our first Snow Survivorship Camp April 15-21 at Mt. Hood Meadows. Snowboard instruction will focus on safety, fundamentals, and having fun. The camp will run for 7 days including your 2 travel days and 5 days of instruction and adventure.

Applications are open to cancer fighters and survivors who have been diagnosed between the ages of 18 and 39. A4C camps are FREE for accepted applicants to attend. No, you do not have to be any sort of athlete to attend! We accept all levels of physical fitness and ability! Airfare is not included.

Learn more about our Survivorship Program or Apply NOW! Want to pay it forward for someone fighting cancer to attend camp? Donate Now.

2012 Survivorship Camp dates announced

We are excited to announce dates for our 2012 camps! Athletes for Cancer is accepting applications for these camps NOW.

  • April 1-7, 2012 – Surfing & Standup Paddlesurfing : Maui, Hawaii
  • November 1-7, 2012 –  Surfing & Standup Paddlesurfing : Maui, Hawaii
  • November 11-17, 2012 –  Surfing & Standup Paddlesurfing : Maui, Hawaii

Additional camps may be added for 2012. Check back here for the latest info.

Survivorship Requirements

  • ALL LEVELS of physical abilities are welcome to apply!!
  • cancer fighters and survivors between the ages of 18 and 40 at time of application
  • cancer diagnosis must be after 18th birthday
  • submission and approval of survivor application
  • submission and approval of medical form completed by doctor
  • airfare/transportation to the nearest airport of camp destination is attendee’s responsibility, but food, accommodations, transportation during camp, instruction, and all necessary gear is covered for the week once at camp.

The gift of getting the SOUL, LIFE back after cancer…. Priceless.

There’s so much STUFF you could get someone for the holidays. ipods, chia pets, scarves, Wiis, socks and… well, more crap that takes up space.  What if you gave someone the opportunity, after battling cancer, to rebuild their confidence, their identity and their life? What if that experience changed their life? Then inspired others to do the same?

We’re shouting out the impact of our survivorship program to the world. We’re done being modest.  Athletes for Cancer is aiming to raise $50 K by January 1 for our Young Adult Surviviorship Programs and we need your help. If you would like to go ahead and donate, do so here.  Or, read on more about the Program…

Learning to surf is just one component to getting over cancer

About the A4C Survivorship Camp Program

Athletes for Cancer creates life-changing experiences for young adult cancer fighters and survivors through outdoor adventure programs that challenge, support, and inspire individuals to rebuild their lives after cancer.

The standup paddling downwinder during Athletes for Cancer

The A4C Survivorship Program brings survivors together in a safe, active setting for facing and embracing challenges, and connecting with other survivors while finding a common ground on the path to rebuilding life after cancer. Our current camps take place in Maui, Hawaii, integrating the rich ocean culture and adventures of surfing, standup paddling, and outrigger canoeing as channels toward life renewal.

Athletes for Cancer show their Surf & SUP style in Maui.

The myth of Survivorship

Most often, being a “cancer survivor” as a young adult implies that the survivor should be grateful for being alive, and to “get on with life.” In actuality, surviving cancer comes with some serious challenges — post-treatment side effects, disability, insurance battles, family and relationship challenges, financial struggles, body issues, sex and fertility barriers, career struggles, confidence and identity loss and more. Here is a great article from the Mayo Clinic on these challenges specific to young adults.  Often the struggles of life post-cancer are more difficult than the disease itself, yet survivorship is not something that is commonly “treated”.  Not many people recognize this.
The medical community is starting to recognize that the needs of the patient as a whole must be addressed — not just the body, but the mind, heart and the soul as well.  We recognize this, aiming to help fighters and survivors fuel the MIND, energize the HEART, and renew the SOUL so they can embrace living while inspiring other survivors to do the same.
Learning to SUP
Medical advances in cancer =  More people SURVIVING cancer!
People are surviving cancer now more than ever. However, the support and resources out there for survivors are limited and inadequate for young adults. Young adults are of an active generation that seek out alternatives to the traditional closed-room support group. Often, they turn down traditional support services completely, assuming they can handle post-cancer challenges on their own.  Athletes for Cancer provides an alternative support experience for young adults with cancer, utilizing outdoor adventures as an organic, yet therapeutic journey to healing and life renewal.
Surfing and supporting each other on and off the water.

Help us sustain and expand the impact of this program.

How you can contribute and be an agent of impact

  1. Give the gift of a donation (and the opportunity to help rebuild a life) in someone’s name. >
  2. Give the gift of an Athletes for Cancer Membership. Give a minimum donation of $250 to become an Athletes for Cancer Member. Recipient receives a shirt, sticker, invitations to special events and opportunities to be more involved.
  3. Refer a survivor you know to our program >
  4. Like our Facebook page (this is minor, but always helps get the word out!) >

If you would like to make an impact on this program, we ask that you DONATE now.  If you would like to volunteer for one of our camps or events, apply here. Our volunteers are the meat of what we do! You’ll be contributing to an incredible program and it does feed the soul a bit too. 😉

Making bonds with other cancer survivors, kicking cancer ass, taking names.

Kimokeo teaches us about the Hawaiian Fish Ponds, and many other lessons.

If you want to learn even more about the program, go to our website. You can also apply here.  Or, see how far your dollar goes when giving the gift of impact to someone:

  • Sponsor one full camp: $25,000
  • Sponsor one day of camp for all survivors: $3500
  • Sponsor one survivor to attend camp: $2000
  • Sponsor airfare for one survivor: $500-1000
  • Sponsor one day of camp for a survivor: $270
  • Sponsor 4-hours of adventure instruction, a key component in the program: $125
  • Sponsor a one day surfboard rental: $30
Every dollar matters. Thank you for your support!

Photos by Tracy Kraft Leboe