Camp Erin®

Camp Erin helps children learn to grieve

When a loved one is at the end of life’s journey, helping children understand and grieve is vital. As part of the Catholic Hospice mission to care for the whole family, we offer Camp Erin® for all children in the tri-county area who have experienced the loss of a loved one.

Next camp: March 20-22, 2020 at Camp Owaissa Bauer in Homestead.

Grief shouldn’t be lonely

At Camp Erin, grieving children learn that they are not alone, that their feelings are normal. They have a safe environment to express themselves with other children going through a similar experience.

Activities that heal

Grief professionals and trained volunteers lead age appropriate groups through clinical grief activities such as remembrance ceremonies, sharing circles, art therapy, music, creative writing, drama and other physical activities.

Camp facilities

Campgrounds have air conditioned cabins fully equipped kitchen, dining hall and bathroom/shower facilities. Campers dine with their cabin mates and Cabin Big Buddies. All meals and snacks will be provided by the camp. Campers will be grouped in cabins according to age/gender. Each cabin will be staffed with two trained Cabin Big Buddies for every 5 campers.

Camp information

Camp Erin is a weekend-long sleep-away camp full of fun, friendship, support and healing. The next camp takes place during the weekend of October 18-20, 2019, at Hugh Taylor Birch State Park. The final day to apply is September 20, 2019.

Additional resources

Child grief is a specialized topic, but there are several local and national organizations that offer resources for the kids themselves and parents of grieving children, including these organizations:

Helpful articles

If your child or a child you know is grieving, these articles can help you understand and relate to their experience:

Register for Camp Erin

The history of Camp Erin

Camp Erin is named in memory of Erin Metcalf of Woodinville, Washington, a remarkable young woman who developed liver cancer at the age of 15. Karen and Jamie Moyer met Erin through Make-A-Wish.

Erin had a compassionate heart and when she was hospitalized she often expressed concern for the other children there as well as their siblings, who sometimes received little attention. The Moyer Foundation helped fund several children’s bereavement camps – including camps for the victims of 9/11, discovering the positive impact a camp of this kind could have.

In 2000, when Erin died at the age of 17, Jamie and Karen Moyer wished to honor Erin’s memory and her caring spirit. Acknowledging her love of children and her desire to help others, the Moyers felt that a grief camp for children would be an appropriate tribute. The first Camp Erin was established in Everett, Washington in 2002 helping 42 grieving children.

Volunteer Opportunities

To learn more about volunteer opportunities, please contact us at (305) 351-7026.