MDA Camp helps kids do what 'everyone else gets to do'
Muscular Dystrophy gradually steals a person's ability to do things like walk, sit upright and breathe easily.
There's no cure, and for families with children suffering from MD, the battle is for quality of life.
A nonprofit in Oregon is helping kids with the disease have more fun at MDA camp.
For a nine-year-old, a week away from Mom can be scary, but not for Christopher Hay. This is his third year at camp, and he's got it down.
"Kind of miss her, kind of don't. It's like half and half," he said.
It's Chelsea Sanford's fifth year as a counselor at MDA camp. "It's not just camp. I call it my camp family," she said.
Some kids at camp with MD type three can walk, but say it's hard.
Christopher has spinal muscular atrophy, but at camp he's just one more kid in a wheelchair. All the campers have some form of Muscular Dystrophy.
"It's an outlet to do what they want in a way that everyone else gets to do it."
In addition to raising funds to find a cure for the more than 30 genetic disorders, the Muscular Dystrophy Association sets aside money to pay for MDA camp.
The first step to getting a child enrolled in camp is to register them with MDA at their Portland office by calling (503) 223-3177. People who would like to donate to MDA should also call this number.