NC’s Electric Cooperatives Join in Sendoff for UNC Burn Center’s Camp Celebrate

Last Friday, 30 fire trucks from across North Carolina convened in Raleigh to carry children who are survivors of burn injuries to Camp Celebrate, a weekend of fellowship, healing and fun. Several volunteers from North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives were on hand to assist with the sendoff. The state’s electric cooperatives are proud to support this and other exceptional programs of the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center, considered one of the best comprehensive burn centers in the world.

Created in 1982 in response to an inability to find traditional camping opportunities for a group of young burn patients at the Burn Center, Camp Celebrate is a weekend camp for children ages 7-15 who have survived burn injuries. Most campers have been treated at the Burn Center, but Camp Celebrate is open to any pediatric burn survivor in North Carolina.

Camp Celebrate is held at Camp Kanata in Wake Forest, and its activities include swimming, canoeing, arts and crafts, fishing and an annual Sunday family picnic. A number of campers return year after year, and some have returned as adults to serve as counselors and share their experiences and knowledge.

Volunteers from across the state, including firefighters and Jaycees, join the Burn Center staff in providing campers a fun and enriching experience by serving as counselors, program staff, counselor-in-training mentors and logistics assistants.

North Carolina’s electric cooperatives have been a proud partner of the North Carolina Jaycee Burn Center at UNC Hospitals since 1972, when the cooperatives’ Board of Directors pledged $40,000 to help create the center. Since then, the co-ops have contributed more than $1.9 million in support of youth burn prevention and education outreach programs, improvements in the pediatric playroom, research for wound care and healing processes and other projects. In 2011, the Burn Center opened its new Acute Burn and Wound Care unit, made possible by support from North Carolina’s electric cooperatives.

The general managers of North Carolina’s Touchstone Energy cooperatives created an annual golf tournament in 1998 to generate financial support for the Burn Center. With the support of dozens of partners and vendors from across the state, the tournament consistently raises more than $100,000 a year.

Visit the In the Community section of our website to learn more about our long-standing partnership with the Burn Center.