Camp Kesem at UC Davis

With over 5 million children impacted by a parent's cancer, Camp Kesem must continue expanding to meet this need. Kesem is the largest national organization dedicated to this unique population, and for many children their Camp Kesem experience is a life-changing event-providing them a community of children with similar experiences, and a safe and welcoming environment to have fun and rediscover their childhood.

Beyond that, our replicable and highly scalable funding model also allows for rapid expansion. Kesem now serves 10 times the number of children supported ten years ago. In summer 2018, nearly 9,000 children attended over 100 week-long sessions of Camp Kesem held at fun and exciting campsites from coast-to-coast. And with your help, we hope to continue supporting more and more children each year! Camp Kesem at UC Davis plays a major role- in 2019 we served over 270 campers during two weeks of camp.

Thank you for being an important part of our growth as we support children through and beyond their parent's cancer with innovative, fun-filled programs that foster a lasting community


Kesem is a nationwide community, driven by passionate college student leaders, that supports children through and beyond their parent's cancer. Kesem's flagship program, Camp Kesem, operates free summer camps for children who have been impacted by a parent's cancer. Founded at Stanford University in 2000, Camp Kesem has since expanded to 116 chapters in 42 states across the country.


In order for Camp Kesem at UC Davis to put on two free weeks of summer camp for nearly 300 campers, we have to raise about $200,000. This budget expands beyond camp- supporting children year round through camp reunions and camper supporter. In addition to the year round support, Davis Kesem also provides transportation to and from camp, a full week of meals, and two weeks full of activities for our campers. One of our goals at Kesem is to make kids feel like kids again, as cancer often forces kids to grow up at a young age. We provide zip lining, paint wars, arts & crafts, campfires, s'mores, and more! But none of this would be possible without funding for all of our programming.

We put on a gala each May in order to raise money for our camp. This gala features over 300 guests, a full catered dinner, four hours of programming, live music, and more! In order to give as much money back to our camp- we have a small budget for the gala and ask for a lot of donations to make the night possible. From baskets in our silent auction, to desserts, to appetizer donations- it all helps! This year's gala will be held on Saturday, May 16th at the California Railroad Museum in Old Town Sacramento.

We are always looking for new ways to outreach in the greater Sacramento community to make sure we are helping as many families as possible gain access to Kesem. During the fall, we often go to school board meetings and recruit more families at larger events in the area. Any additional resources to help us reach more campers would be very appreciated!

Organization Data


Organization name

Camp Kesem at UC Davis

Mission Category

Youth Development

Operating Budget


Organization Need

Funding: Program, In-Kind Donations, Other


10586 West Pico Boulevard #196
Los Angeles, CA 90064