Get to know our program
The Newfoundland and Labrador branch of Diabetes Canada has operated Camp Douwanna for children with type 1 diabetes since 1964.
In the summer of 1981, the construction of a new campsite began at Foxtrap. During the construction years, camps were held at Mackinsons in 1981-82 and in 1983, a camp was held at Lion Max Simms Memorial Camp at Bishop’s Falls in central Newfoundland.
In 1985, camp moved to the site of Lion Max Simms Memorial Camp, where it remained until 2013 when in 2014, Camp Douwanna moved to its new home at Camp Lavrock on Salmonier Line. In 2023 Camp Douwanna will be operated at Memorial University
Located in St. John's NL, the camp has ample space for field sports and more. Campers will stay in dorm rooms organized by age groups , there is also a main lodge which accommodates dining and indoor programs, Campers will move to different areas of campus to participate in activities.
We recognize that our work takes place on traditional Indigenous territories across Canada. We also wish to acknowledge that Camp Douwanna, hosted at Camp Lavrock, is located on the traditional Indigenous territory of the Mi’kmaq and the Beothuk. We would also like to recognize the Inuit of Nunatsiavut and NunatuKavut and the Innu of Nitassinan, and their ancestors, as the original people of Labrador. Today, Holyrood, Newfoundland, is home to many Indigenous people, and we are grateful to have the opportunity to meet and work on this territory. We wish to express gratitude for the resources on this land we are using, and honour all the First Nation, Métis, and Inuit people who have been living on the land since time immemorial.
Diabetes Canada knows that land acknowledgement is only a first step in the essential act of reconciliation and relationship building with Indigenous peoples.
About the Camp
Campers & Staff
Camp Douwanna accommodates 48 campers, ages 7 to 15.
No transportation is provided to or from camp. Please let us know if you need assistance and we will support you in finding ways to get your camper to camp.
Our Healthcare Team is led by Dr. Heather Power and Brittany Rossiter BNRN CDE.
The Douwanna health-care team comes to us from:
- Diabetes education clinics across Newfoundland
- Family practices
- All departments within the Newfoundland Health Authorities Diabetes educators, nurses, physicians, registered dietitians and medical students make up this wonderful group and are part of the cabin team.
Our art program helps campers explore their creative side, expand their knowledge of art techniques and history, all while using the beautiful setting of Camp Douwanna for inspiration.
Campers have the opportunity to test out new instruments and learn the basic skills to play them. Campers prepare a weekly music performance to showcase at the end of the week.
Sports and games
Campers will have fun in a safe environment where they will learn new sports & games not traditionally played at home. Past examples include: Quidditch, Field Hockey and Crab Leg Soccer.
Our older campers (ages 13 and 14) get to participate in our skills program during the elective slot, which is designed to let your camper focus on activities they are interested in and work to improve their skills in those activities. At the beginning of the week, campers are offered a choice of three activities they may be interested in and are placed into one of those three choices. Campers then spend the next four days in the same skills area working with instructors to build on what they learned the previous day.
The Electives Program is designed to let your camper participate in activities that are unique and provide a different set of challenges than those listed above. Campers get to choose these activities individually. Some past examples include: yoga, mad scientist and pottery.
We offer a recreational swimming program everyday at the Aquarena. Campers are supervised by D-Camps staff during their time at the pool. All Aquarena programs have registered NLS guards on site.
The theme meals for Camp Douwanna 2023 will be selected in June. Themes will be shared with families through email after June 15th 2023.
Theme meals are a great way to get involved and we encourage any campers who are interested to dress up. Remember costumes can be made from items found around the house or at your local dollar store. Get creative!
Rates & Dates
If this fee is a challenge for you and your family Diabetes Canada offers subsidies to those who qualify for financial assistance. These subsidies are made possible through the generous support of various donors.
It is our responsibility to ensure that donations go to support families experiencing financial hardship that would make attending camp impossible.
To determine eligibility for a subsidy, you will be asked to complete a financial assistance application. When reviewing applications, income will not be the only consideration in whether an applicant qualifies for subsidy. Our goal is to ensure that all campers have an opportunity regardless of their financial situation while using donations as prudently as possible.
Who is eligible for financial support?
You may be eligible for a subsidy if you:
Receive financial assistance from an identified government program, OR
Experience financial hardship and do not receive government financial assistance.
What does financial hardship mean?
Financial hardship means that a person has difficulty paying for basic daily living expenses (e.g. food, shelter, clothing), and does not have access to savings or other financial resources.
Note: Supporting documents will be required to determine eligibility. Please be prepared to provide a copy of your paystub, T4 or Notice of Assessment to accompany your application.
Important to note:
To ensure that we are providing equitable access to financial assistance we will not be able to consider you request until you have completed the financial assistance application form in full. This includes the requested supporting documents