Camp Korey Hosts Landmark Session for Children with Mitochondrial Disease

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Children with mitochondrial disease now have a place to let loose and enjoy summer with their peers: Camp Korey in Carnation, Washington.

We are bringing kids together who might not have had the opportunity to meet without camp

Mitochondrial disease ("Mito"), occurs when the mitochondria of the cell cannot produce enough energy for cell or organ function. Sometimes called "the invisible disease", symptoms vary and may include profound muscle weakness, extreme fatigue and pain, and ultimately organ failure. Mitochondrial disease in Children can be very stressful due to the fact that oftentimes they cannot participate in typical childhood activities like sports and recess because of the limitations of their disease.

Summer camp--that place of fun, camaraderie, and self-discovery--seemed out of reach until Camp Korey. Camp Korey serves children and their families with serious and life-threatening illnesses at no cost to them, offering summer camps, family weekends, and outreach for those in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.

From August 10-14, Camp Korey will host the first camper session in the world dedicated exclusively to children struggling with mitochondrial disease. MitoAction.org, a non-profit organization dedicated to quality of life initiatives for patients with Mito, is partnering with Camp Korey to offer this vital opportunity.

Thirty-two boys and girls affected by Mito from throughout the United States will spend a week at Camp Korey in an environment specially designed for their success. A full medical team of doctors and nurses is on hand each week to care for campers as they have the time of their lives.

"We are bringing kids together who might not have had the opportunity to meet without camp," says Hillary Carey, Camp Director at Camp Korey. "It is an honor to be able to raise awareness for mitochondrial disease at the same time."

Nikki Clark, age 14 from Vermont, has had Mito since early childhood and is very excited about the opportunity. "All the kids will have what I have, so for once I won't feel different." Nikki's mother, Amy, is particularly grateful for the unique opportunity for Nikki to be away from home in an environment where her medical needs will be understood. Mitochondrial disease in children can be stressful for parents, too. Parents can find the support and advice that they need by being part of a mitochondrial group in their area.

More information about Camp Korey is available online at http://www.campkorey.org or 425.844.3100.

To be a part of a mitochondrial group or to learn more about mitochondrial disease, visit http://www.MitoAction.org, or 888-648-6228

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Cristy Balcells
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