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Specialized summer camp for children with cancer: social support and adjustment

Publication year
Conrad, A. L.; Altmaier, E. M.

The purpose of this study was to assess the types of social support received by children attending a week-long residential summer camp for children with cancer. Following the camp, families were sent a social support questionnaire (for the child to complete) and the Child Behavior Checklist (for parents to complete). Analyses evaluated children’s adjustment rated by parents, support reported by children, and the relationship between adjustment and support. Girls reported receiving more support than boys, and both genders reported receiving more support at camp than children in the general population. Ratings of adjustment were not different from normative data for boys or girls. No relationship was found between adjustment and support. The camp environment is very supportive and may offer forms of support not available in other environments. Research is needed to further understand how camp can be supportive, what factors may affect that support, and how the experience enhances children’s quality of life.

Research abstracts