Among Simcha Layeled’s other programs, we offer the sick children and their families the chance to participate in a variety of exciting, unique tours and camps:
• A 5-day summer camp full of attractions, shows, touring and extraordinary experiences.
• Especially for the big brother/sister program – a fascinating winter camp getaway, full of exciting experiences for the children and their mentors.
• Camps where we “Fulfill the dreams“ of children suffering from special medical conditions (Familial Dysautonomia, Endocrinitis, etc.) as well as a dream tour to Europe.
In addition, our organization arranges a number of trips and camps for different patient populations tailored to their unique diseases and disabilities.
All year long, Simcha Layeled organizes enjoyable activities for the children to give them a break from their routine. We also arrange many “fun days” and parties for special days throughout the year.
The camps and trips are managed by the organization's projects department, including a project director and a young woman in “Sherut Leumi” service.
The flagship project of "Simcha Layeled" is the big brother/sister program. It is structured so that every sick child is assigned a counselor to serve as a kind of "older brother or sister". These counselors assist the child emotionally and socially, helping them cope with the difficulties of their disease.
An annual three-day camp is held as part of the big brother/sister program's activities. The camp is designated to draw the child out from their life’s harsh routine and to create a refreshing and reinvigorating experience. It also serves to improve the child’s social skills both with their counselor and with their peers. The groups are led by coordinators who have led the mentors groups throughout the year. Each coordinator is in charge of his own group during the winter camp.
The camp is assisted by a professional medical staff - a doctor and a paramedic, with an ambulance at the ready.
The camp is Simcha layeled’s flagship activity.
During summer camp, the children enjoy many experiences – a visit to the Western Wall and at the President's house, challenging hikes, jeep treks, a flight over Israel, a visit to the amusement park, visits with celebrities and artists, and many other activities.
The camp is located at the center of Israel, and from that point the kids head out to diverse activities throughout the country.
Number of participating children– about 120.
Staff- approximately 160 youths, students and professionals.
Total number of participants – about 310 people.
Trip duration: 5 days.
At the camp, the children are accompanied by their regular "big brother/sister” counselor. In this way, the camp contributes significantly to strengthening the bond between the children and their mentors, further contributing to the organization's success.
In order to provide appropriate medical attention, the camp staffs a doctor, a paramedic, a nurse, and six medical orderlies, and retains the use of an ambulance.
Likewise, technical volunteers take care of the operations and logistics necessary for running a large camp of this size.
Months before departing for camp, the organization's children are already brimming with anticipation. And the sweet memories of the summer stay with the children long after camp is finished, invigorating them to cope with their various diseases and with the difficulties of daily life. We have received many letters from the organization's children, telling us about their experiences at the camp and describing how significant and rewarding it was to participate in it.
A day trip for the hospitalization ward
One of the most difficult challenges faced by hospital staff in wards for chronically ill children is that their encounters with the children revolve solely around treatments and tense situations. The same situation exists between the children themselves on these wards. Because of this, we see tremendous importance in taking the hospital staff, the children and their families, our on retreats where they can relate to one another as equals, free to enjoy each other’s company.
An average trip of this sort involves thirty sick children, ten departmental staffers and about thirty volunteers from the organization.
Camp in Italy
Each year in the spring, Simcha Layeled hosts a camp in Italy.
The camp is funded largely by contributions from the Jewish community in Italy.
Camp is held in the same region as Trieste, Venice and Verona. A group of 24 sick children aged 8-17 depart for the camp, each child at different treatment stages and at a different disability level. For these children, leaving their routine behind for a entertaining week abroad becomes the high point of their year, and a bright spot in their routine of treatments and hospitalization. The variety of exciting, intense experiences of these trips is something the children will not forget for the rest of their lives. Accompanying the group is approximately 20 counselors, volunteers and medical staff.
Familial Dysautonomia spring seminar
Familial Dysautonomia is a harsh, genetic, terminal disease which affects the most basic bodily functions.
The disease causes a variety of ailments, resulting in a lack of coordination and control of the body's voluntary and involuntary functions.
The disease manifests itself immediately after birth and worsens with age. There are 132 Familial Dysautonomia patients in Israel.
Once a year we organize a camp for Dysautonomia patients, to lighten their hard daily routine with a few days of happiness and joy, and hopefully, to make them forget some of their pain.
For these youngsters, the opportunity to go on this trip is a very significant one-time event.
The trip takes place every year with the participation of Professor Hani Ma'ayan (the physician treating these patients) from the Hadassah Mt. Scopus hospital, and with the cooperation of the Dysautonomia Association.
Number of adolescents and adults participating in the trip – about 35.
Total number of participants – about 85.
Trip duration - 3 days.