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what to expect

Volunteers are an integral part of the Camp Sunshine magic, and help to make each family’s stay an unforgettable experience they often talk about the rest of the year.

Volunteers range in age from 16 - 80 and come from throughout the United States and from various foreign countries. Full-time and part-time volunteer positions are available.

Camp Sunshine’s sessions are disease specific and require approximately 75 - 85 volunteers per session. This allows us to be able to have a 2 campers to 1 volunteer ratio in each of the children’s groups, with exception of the nursery which is a 1 to 1 ratio.  This ensures that every child has the ability to feel special while at camp.


While each volunteer's experience at Camp Sunshine is unique, there is a universal sense that this is a profoundly rewarding experience.

Volunteers can choose to apply for the following areas:

  • Nursery (ages 0-2)

  • Tot lot (ages 3-5)

  • Children (ages 6-8)

  • Older children (ages 9-12)

  • Teens (ages 13-18)

  • Adults

  • Arts and crafts

  • Food service

  • Marina

  • Lifeguards

  • Photographer

  • Activity Window

  • Sports Center

  • Grounds, Maintenance, Etc.


A volunteer's role varies from working directly with kids in a group setting to supportive positions such as: working in the kitchen, activities window, arts & crafts, maintenance areas, or at the marina.  Volunteer areas have one to two lead counselor(s) or staff member present to provide guidance to volunteers.

One of Camp Sunshine’s goals is to help kids be kids and families to enjoy a retreat away from home together.  To help achieve that, each age group at camp has a mix of children living with a life-threatening illness and siblings.  This helps give a sick child a sense of normalcy while at camp.

Daily Schedule for Volunteers

Volunteer schedules vary slightly depending on assignment area.

  • 7:15 Food service starts breakfast prep.

  • 8:00-9:00 Breakfast.

  • 9:00-12:00 Volunteers start the program with activities for kids and parents including Canoeing, Kayaking, Paddleboating, Swimming, Archery, Ping pong, Arts and Crafts, Whiffleball, Kickball, Volleyball, Computer time, and Parents /Kids group sessions.

  • 11:00 Food service begin lunch prep.

  • 12:00 Children are signed out of their groups.

  • 12:00-1:00 Lunch.

  • 1:00-2:00 Rest period for younger campers and parents.

  • 1:15-5:00 Activities (see morning options).

  • 4:00 Food service begins dinner prep.

  • 5:00 Children sign out of their groups and volunteers clean up their areas.

  • 5:30-6:30 Dinner.

  • 7:00-9:00 Evening activities: Musical Entertainment, Pool, Activities, Group Bonfire, Talent Night, and Celebration Show.

On-site housing is provided to those volunteers able to commit to a full session.  Volunteers are required to share a two-room, 5 bed suite with private bath with 1-4 other volunteers.  Camp Sunshine strives to make age-compatible matching in rooming assignments, but this is not guaranteed.  Volunteer couples may room together when space allows.  If not, you may have to share a suite with another couple or be assigned to single sex rooms.  Linens and towels are not provided by camp, so please be sure to bring them.


All meals are provided, but you may want to bring snacks (popcorn, soda, bottled water, granola bars, etc). Each room has a mini-fridge and microwave. PLEASE NOTE: We are a tree nut free campus. Please do not bring any snacks that contain peanuts or other tree nuts such as almonds, etc.


Volunteers are provided with one yellow volunteer shirt. This shirt identifies you and should be worn every day that you are on duty. Extra shirts are available at a cost of $7.00.  Most volunteers wear comfortable shorts or pants. Please make sure that shorts and pants are appropriate for camp (ie shorts not too short).  Footwear should be comfortable with most people wearing sneakers or sandals.  Food service volunteers are required to wear closed toe shoes and either a hat or hair net.

There is a mandatory half-day orientation prior to the families’ arrival that includes an overview of the session schedule and activities, medical and Psychosocial specific illness-related information and updates on Camp policies and regulations.

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