Big Shots Camp

2024 Camp Dates: June 20-24, 2024

Designed for campers ages 13-17

"My son came home so fulfilled. Every single year he comes home more excited than the last. This year he really connected with the other youth, he ranted and raved about the counselors and staff."
- Camper Parent
Big Shots 2023

What is Big Shots?

Big Shots is designed specifically for T1D campers aged 13-17, combining traditional summer camp activities with fun and interactive diabetes education. Age-appropriate programming gives campers the ability to bond and relate to one another in a traditional camping environment. They will meet other kids their age going through the same struggles as them and form a bond you can only find at diabetes camp. Big Shots Resident Camp provides an inclusive community for campers to have fun while parents relax knowing their child is surrounded by professionals. Each year's theme brings a new set of activities, so whether it is your first year or not, there is always something new to try!

About Our Staff

Our staff is comprised of medical professionals in the endocrinology field. Nurses, pharmacists, Certified Diabetes Educators (CDEs), registered dieticians, and nurse practitioners all come together to make camp a success. We have people living with Type 1 diabetes on our medical staff, and nearly all our young adult counselors live with T1D themselves and are role models for proper diabetes management at camp. Several members of our staff were campers themselves, and over time created strong connections that last past camp!

Programming at Big Shots

We pack each day of Big Shots with age-appropriate activities; core programming includes crafts, swimming, and camp-wide assemblies like Talent Show or Dutch Auction. Each year brings a new theme with new programs and activities to keep campers coming back for more year after year! In 2024, we are excited to allow campers to engage in guided discovery by selecting which programs to attend each day.

Included in the schedule for the week is diabetes education. We conduct hands-on activities and watch for real-life education opportunities to teach diabetes skills such as practicing carb counting, trying new injection sites, cooking classes, and opportunities to ask about growing up with Type 1 diabetes. We combined fun games and group discussions to make sure that the campers leave camp with extra tools to manage their disease. We have also hosted people living with T1D who professional athletes are, firefighters, top-charting musicians, and more to speak to our campers and inspire them to reach for the stars.

A typical day at camp looks like:

9:00 am- Breakfast/ Dosing

10:00 am- Open Programming: Crafts, Archery, Open Gym, Fishing

12:30 pm: Lunch/ Dosing

2:00 pm: Swimming

3:00 pm: Snack/ Change

3:30 pm: Open Programming: Alpine Tower, Softball, Tye Dye, Free Time

5:45 pm: Break

6:30 pm: Dinner/ Dosing

7:30 pm: Camp-wide Assembly- Talent Show!

9:00 pm: Snack

10:00 pm: Cabin Time/ Showers

11:00 pm: Lights Out!

Big Shots Accessibility

Diabetes Youth Services works hard to ensure every child living with diabetes has the opportunity to attend camp. Thanks to our donors, we can reserve charter buses to transport campers from Toledo, Ohio to camp and back. This service comes at no extra charge to our families and saves about 4 hours of driving. We understand securing camp supplies can be expensive, so we offer a Duffel Bag voucher with camp essentials to families who need it. Simply submit a referral note from your child’s doctor and we will take it from there!

Big Shots Resident Camp Fee: $600 | Registration Fee: $10

Campers in the past 3 years:
Campers improved their attitude towards their diabetes 87%
Campers were able to identify new tools related to diabetes management 77%
Campers talked about meaningful camp experiences 100%
Campers showed improvement in their diabetes care and attitude towards diabetes 79%
Parents would recommend DYS camp to other families 99%
Parents felt that camp fulfilled their expectations 99%

Meet your 2024 Big Shots Camp Staff!

Pictures from Big Shots 2023: Through the Decades