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THON Director Thursday: Meet 2022 Family Relations Director Caroline Camp

Name: Caroline Camp

Major: Political Science and Spanish Major

Past THON experience:

2019 Dancer Relations committee member
2020 and 2021 Family Relations captain

Name an interesting, weird, or quirky fact about yourself:

I have been on a safari in Kenya!

What made you want to apply for the Family Relations director position for THON 2022?

I wanted to apply for the Family Relations director position, first and foremost, to serve the families at the heart of our mission. Throughout my time on the Family Relations committee, I have learned so much from our families and witnessed true strength, perseverance, and hope. It is such an honor to be able to get to know the families at every stage of their cancer journey, from active treatment to survivorship. I feel especially honored to continue fostering amazing relationships with bereaved families and ensure their angels are remembered and celebrated in the THON community. As the Family Relations director, I have the unique opportunity to not only provide emotional support but also inspire other passionate volunteers by empowering families to share their stories and interact with volunteers. These interactions strengthen our community and provide volunteers with motivation and a personal connection to the fight. Ultimately, the THON community is full of love, hope, and light, and I wanted to become director to continue to spread that light as far as I can to both our families and volunteers. 

What are your responsibilities as the Family Relations director?

As the Family Relations Director for THON 2022, my primary responsibility is to provide emotional support to Four Diamonds families and lead a committee of captains as they seek to do the same. This support takes the form of robust programming for families including the Adopt-a-Family Program, the TEENetwork, New Family Orientations, and pre-THON events such as the THON 5K and Family Carnival. It also includes programming that connects families and volunteers such as the Penn Pal Program, Captain-in-Training, the Perpetual Pennant Project to remember our angels, and more. Additionally, as the Family Relations director, I work to educate the THON Community on our families’ journeys by empowering them to share their stories through the Family Education Program, Family Focus Videos, and speaking opportunities at THON events. Above all else, I strive to ensure the families remain at the core of everything THON does.

What do you want to implement in your position this year that’s unique and differs from years past?

This year, I am looking forward to continuing to connect with families in the virtual space since we learned that it can be an effective way to form relationships and foster a sense of community. At the same time, I am looking forward to returning to some of our favorite in-person events and being with everyone again! So, for the first time, we will be connecting with families in both ways which are unique and a new challenge. 

What makes the Family Relations committee so cool, fun, and/or important?

The Family Relations committee is important because it connects our amazing families to the volunteers who work so hard to raise money to support them! Getting to facilitate these interactions is so cool, and also important to ensure everyone feels connected to the mission. It is also such a fun committee because we get to do fun things with the kids and teens! 

What are the overall goals you hope to reach with your committee for THON 2022?

Overall, my goal for my committee this year is to meet the families where they are, support them in the way they need, and lead the THON community in that same mission. We have so many passionate volunteers and inspiring families, so my goal is to be the bridge between the two alongside my captains! 

Why do you THON?

I THON for every single Four Diamonds Family I have had the honor of meeting and for each volunteer I have met through this amazing organization. I THON for the day when no family has to hear the words “your child has cancer”.

What’s your favorite THON memory?

My favorite THON memory was walking onto the floor for the first time during THON 2020 and seeing Joyce Ortiz’s paired organizations, Alpha Tau Omega and Zeta Tau Alpha, holding up letters spelling out her name in the stands. Each letter was painted with something Joyce loved. Joyce had recently become one of our THON angels earlier that year, and in that moment, I knew she was there in the BJC with us all.

Per Onward State tradition, if you could be any dinosaur, which one would you be and why?

According to a Buzzfeed quiz, I would be a velociraptor because of my quick-thinking and logical approach!

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About the Author

Dana June Nunemacher

Dana is a redshirt sophomore, who is studying public relations. She is from the 570 and yes, she has watched The Office. Her passions in life include drinking unsweetened iced tea and spreading her love for agriculture (yee haw)! Send any cow pictures or complaints to [email protected]

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