Resources for Parents

Type 1 diabetes camps for kids and teens

July 03, 2023

type 1 diabetes camps for kids

Did you know that there are camps just for kids who live with type 1 diabetes (T1D)?

It’s true: there are kids’ camps where carb counting, hypos, injections and bolusing are very much part of the agenda. It’s a place where all kids living with T1D can feel free and safe to be away from their parents as they spend time with friends who don’t just understand the T1D life, but who are living it too.

Diabetes camps are an amazing way for children and young people living with T1D to experience time away from their family in a safe way. Strong friendships are often formed, creating connections that are so valuable in making children and young people feel less alone in their T1D life.

T1D camps are usually led by a team of professionals who help young people manage their diabetes over the course of the camp, building independence and invaulable self-managing skills.

Younger children living with T1D usually attend diabetes camps with a parent or carer, while older children and teenagers attend camp without their family members.

Here’s a first-hand account of 17 year old Grace Gammill’s experience at diabetes camp.

“My highlights from camp would probably be the bus trips (we listened to a lot of fun music and everyone would sing along), swimming with the seals and dolphins, bowling, trivia night and the disco.

“We also had a Q&A which was split into girls and boys. I really enjoyed doing these. It gave us a chance to share our opinions on different topics and we gave each other advice on living with T1D.

“I got really close to the girls in my tent as well as a couple of other people, and I still talk to them all the time. They are the most incredible people and I’m so grateful for each and every single one of them. We are like a family and it feels like I’ve known them for my whole life.

If you ever have the opportunity to go on a diabetes camp, I highly recommend you go, they are so much fun!”

How to find T1D kids camps

If you’re looking for a camp experience for your child living with T1D, start by speaking to your diabetes educator or the diabetes authority group in your state.

You might need to join a mailing list or wait until camps are advertised for your child’s age group. There’s often a greater demand than there are places available, so an application process may apply. Places are often allocated according to issues being experienced by the child/family, previous camps attended, and where the child/family is in their T1D journey.

Search the following organisations to find camp opportunities for your child living with T1D. (This list is updated as we learn about new camps.)