WESTPORT, Conn., Aug. 4, 2020 — COVID-19 has disrupted many in-person camps and children living with serious illnesses who rely on these experiences to remain connected to friends and breakthrough the limits of their illness are particularly affected. To provide this transformative camp experience to children living with serious illnesses, SeriousFun Children’s Network (SeriousFun), a network made up of camps and programs that serve children living with more than 50 medical conditions, has moved to innovative experiences and virtual platforms.
Newman’s Own Foundation will provide SeriousFun with $1 million over and above their regular giving to help SeriousFun’s 16 Member Camps provide virtual camp and family weekend programs, live-streamed programs, virtual discussion groups, at-home activity resources, and camp-inspired recipes to make at home, among many more. All programming and materials are provided to the campers free of charge.
“Paul Newman wanted his legacy to be helping these children and their families reach beyond the limitations of their illnesses to experience the joys of childhood, and we’re happy to continue in that mission,” said Miriam Nelson, Acting President and CEO of Newman’s Own Foundation.
Salad dressing is the key to this effort, with very bottle sold by Newman Own, Inc. this summer contributing additional profits to the cause.
“With support from generous donors such as Newman’s Own, SeriousFun Children’s Network has helped children living with serious illnesses and their families discover joy, confidence and a new world of possibilities,” said Blake Maher, CEO. “We are thankful for Newman’s Own’s continued support as we shift our efforts toward virtual programming, which allows us to connect with and support our campers and their families during this difficult time.”
In 1988, Paul Newman founded a special camp for kids living with serious illnesses and named it The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp after the feisty gang of “outlaws” in his film Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. With the initial help of profits from the sale of Newman’s Own salad dressings and additional support of thousands of other donors annually, The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp became a beacon of hope for more than 20,000 children and their family members annually. Over the years, inspired by what was happening at The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, Paul, along with like-minded and generous supporters, opened up similar camps all around the world, sparking a global movement and creating a very special community of camps and programs now known as SeriousFun Children’s Network.