National Kidney Foundation of Illinois Hosts 10th Annual Kidney Camp at YMCA Camp Duncan

July 29, 2014

National Kidney Foundation of Illinois Holds Overnight Camp for Youth Living with Kidney Disease

From Sunday, July 13-Friday, July 18, 16 kids ages 7-15 attended the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois' Kidney Camp, an overnight camp devoted to providing a fun and safe environment for youth living with kidney disease.

Kidney Camp is free of charge and is held at YMCA Camp Duncan in Ingleside, Illinois. This year marked our 10th year hosting Kidney Camp at YMCA Camp Duncan. This week-long overnight event offers children a traditional camp experience while under the supervision of trained medical professionals. Campers engaged in activities such as swimming, boating, a high ropes course, arts and crafts, horseback riding, team building, and more.

NKFI staff member and nurse practitioner Nancy Lepain was joined by several medical volunteers who were on-site to administer medications, dialysis treatments, and assist with any other medical needs. Nancy has supervised Kidney Camp for the past ten years and loves seeing familiar faces as well as meeting new ones.

“I love this program and I’m grateful to Camp Duncan for allowing our kids to be a part of their camp family,” said Nancy. “These kids are incredibly resilient and some of them have to overcome significant obstacles to attend camp. I am amazed year after year by their courage and strength. This program will always be important to me personally.”

Kidney Camp is made possible by generous sponsors such as the Benjamin B. Green-Field Foundation, a privately endowed grant-making organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for children and elderly living in Chicago.

Since its inception in 2004, hundreds of kids have been given the opportunity to attend Kidney Camp and connect with peers who have similar conditions, at no cost to their family. One child in particular, 13-year-old Devin Bender from Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, attended Kidney Camp this year for the second year in a row.

“[Kidney Camp] is something that is really special to me because it’s really the first time that I can do something overnight far away from home,” Devin said. “I made a lot of friends there and was excited to see them again.”

Many children with kidney disease are unable to travel and participate in certain activities due to their health. Kidney Camp enables kids to be independent, forge new friendships, and have a unique camp experience while continuing to receive medical treatment.


To see more photos from this year's Kidney Camp, please visit our Flickr page by clicking here.

About the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois
The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois improves the health and well-being of people at risk for and affected by kidney disease through prevention, education and empowerment. To learn more, please visit