'Sunshine Kids' summer camp shows kids with cancer a week of fun

Camp Sunshine shows kids with cancer a week of fun

For 27 years, a camp has been helping kids with cancer forget about hospitals, medicine and doctors for at least one week during their summer.

At Austin Sunshine Camps, about a dozen kids and teens have been swimming and paddle-boarding at Lakeway Marina on Lake Travis all week long.

"You'll have a blast, meet some new friends," said Connor Warfield.

Warfield had leukemia.

"You're going to face a little bit of adversity, so be prepared for that," Warfield said of cancer. "It's not going to be a smooth ride."

All of the 'Sunshine Kids' have cancer or are survivors.

"It's harder than you think," said Adrian Garcia, 14. "I have, like, just little thoughts every once in a while about, like, 'What if it comes back?'"

Emily Castillo, 15, and Jennifer Ruiz, 16, quickly became friends when they learned they both survived the same cancer: Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.

"Not a lot of people understand it," Ruiz said. "I can relate with these kids, because they understand. That's why we have a connection."

That connection is about struggle and survival.

"They are very, very resilient," said Pediatric Nurse Emily Kern. "I think that's a common theme among all of them."

Kern swims with them and hands out medicine, but notices something special about these kids.

"No matter what these kids are going through, they're still kids," Kern said. "They just want to play. They still want to hang out with her friends. They want to cut up -- break the rules. They still want to be kids."

© 2017 KVUE-TV


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