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More in Community
Camp Sunshine completes John T. Gorman Foundation's $250,000 matching challenge
CASCO — Camp Sunshine today announced it has met the $250,000 Matching Challenge issued by the John T. Gorman Foundation. In December 2009, the John T. Gorman Foundation vowed to match 2010 gifts exceeding $25,000, up to $250,000. With just one month left to reach the goal, Jack's Magic Bean Fund, founded by the Ramsdens, a Camp Sunshine bereavement family, committed its second gift of $50,000 this year, to meet the final milestone.
The John T. Gorman Foundation was founded by the late John T. ("Tom") Gorman of Yarmouth in 1995, and its mission is to improve the lives of Maine residents through grants in five core focus areas, one of which is improving care for those suffering from cancer. The Foundation began sponsoring families at Camp Sunshine in 2005, and supported the construction of the new Parents' Discussion Room in 2008 with a gift of $100,000.
"The successful completion of this matching challenge is a reflection of Camp Sunshine's strength as an organization, and the importance of the support it provides to families of children with life-threatening illnesses," said Shawn Gorman, president of the John T. Gorman Foundation. "Our gift, and the funds raised through our challenge, will endow 20 family sponsorship funds in perpetuity, providing the resources to help families connect and support each other for years to come."
Additional gifts of $25,000 toward the Gorman Foundation Matching Challenge were made by Carol J. & K. David Hancock Charitable Trust, David and Laurie Sukoff, The Elmina B. Sewall Foundation, the Billy Burchard Foundation, the Sasser family and an anonymous donor.
"It is our absolute pleasure and honor to give back to a place that has helped us so much," said Matt and Linda Ramsden of Jack's Magic Bean Fund. "December 5th marked five years since our son Jack left this world behind. In that time, we've continued to go on because of the role Camp Sunshine played in our lives - one that has allowed us to be emotionally present for our surviving children. We can't even imagine what the past five years might have brought without Camp Sunshine's bereavement program. There is simply no other organization that cares for grieving families like Camp Sunshine."
Located in Maine's scenic Sebago Lake region, Camp Sunshine features a 23-acre lakeside campus which provides all families, free of charge, with private family suites, meals, on-site medical services, counseling services, and recreational facilities. To date, Camp Sunshine has welcomed families from 47 states and 17 countries.
"With this level of commitment from the John T. Gorman Foundation, we'll be able to help so many more families like the Ramsdens receive support and care for the entire family - a service that's not available anywhere else," said Matthew M. Hoidal, Esq., executive director of Camp Sunshine. "We are touched and humbled by the heartwarming generosity of all of our donors. Their gifts and the incredible investment from the John T. Gorman Foundation will help secure the future of our programs, and we thank them for keeping Camp Sunshine close to their hearts."
Camp Sunshine offers children with life-threatening illnesses and their families a place to relax together for a week, and to take a break from the extraordinary demands placed upon them on a daily basis. The year-round program is free of charge and staffed almost entirely by volunteers. It is the only program in the nation whose mission is to address the impact of a life-threatening illness on every member of the immediate family - the ill child, the parents and the siblings. Since its inception in 1984, Camp Sunshine has provided a haven for more than 32,000 individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds. In addition to providing 24-hour on-site medical and psychosocial support, the camp offers a variety of daily activities, including swimming, boating, archery and soccer, and special events such as bonfires and cookouts. To support Camp Sunshine, please call 655-3800 or visit www.campsunshine.org.