By: Jake Krier, UWEC Sports Information
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (blugolds.com) - "A family going through the everyday ordeal of cancer treatment needs a place where everyone can just smile, laugh, have fun and remember what it's like to really be a family again."
That is the mission of Joshua's Camp, to be a refuge for families that have a child 18 years of age or younger being treated for cancer in the Chippewa Valley.
Last Friday night, members of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire football team were able to help aid in creating that retreat where the kids at Joshua's Camp can simply have fun and not have to worry about their situation, even if only for a few hours.
The players volunteered to take part in Joshua Camp's 2016 Fall Program at Action City Family Fun Center. They interacted with and helped the kids in a number of ways; to name a few, they made balloon animals, participated in a marching band, helped with a s'mores bar, danced, and played games.
"Everything the players were asked to do, they did," said Camp Director Cathy Finney. "I thought it was an awesome event that turned out really nice. We accomplished what we wanted to accomplish for the nine families who were able to attend."
Finney added that the kids liked the attention that they received from the players and enjoyed "acting funny" with them, "especially since they are adults who wanted to do childlike things with them."
Linebacker Sam Romanski (So.-Wausau, WI/East) said, "I really enjoyed Friday night and seeing all the smiles on the kids' faces. Knowing for that two-hour span of time, these kids can forget about their situation and just relax and have fun with us is a great feeling."
"It was a great experience," added quarterback Scott Procter (So.-Chicago, IL/Saint Rita of Cascia). "It was a lot of fun being around and interacting with such amazing kids. To see their smiles and how much the kids enjoyed the event made the night very special."
Finney concluded by saying, "I just can't express how great this event was; it was one of our best yet."