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Summer for one New York youth meant a combination of rowdy 6-year-old boys and needles

Kendra Hennig spent her vacation as a counselor for a camp designed for diabetic children in developing countries. Hennig volunteered in Ecuador.

Her hardest task was a willful boy afraid of injecting himself. Yet, after his first successful blood test he smiled, she said.

He said, "That didn't even hurt . . . could you do it again?"

Hennig volunteered for American Youth Understanding Diabetes Abroad, Inc. the organization that sponsored the camp. The organization is a youth-led group who work to help to provide children with diabetes with the education and supplies they need. AYUDA, Inc. started the camp, called Campo Amigo Ecuador, six years ago.

The organization, however, began in 1994 when two teenagers thought that youth should help sponsor change in other youth. They have maintained this idea ever since.

"I am 26 years old and everyone else is younger than me," Adam J. Ross, the vice president.

Over 550 children have attended camps throughout the years, and AYUDA, Inc. has provided over $1.75 million dollars in medical supplies and services internationally. Yet to help make all of this possible were over 70 volunteers.

One such volunteer was Merith Basey, from the UK, who said that she found the camp to be a rewarding experience.

"To be part of such a pro-active group working to make a difference in the lives of less fortunate kids filled me with a great sense of achievement," she said.

Volunteers undergo intensive language training and learn about diabetes. This helps them teach children to live with their diabetes. The children learn everything from how to administer shots to how to live a normal life with diabetes.

AYUNDA, Inc. is once again sponsoring Campo Amigo Ecuador and needs volunteers. Applications must be received by March 1, 2005 and all of their information can be found on their website -

In 1996, two teenagers with the vision that youth can serve as agents of change founded the non-profit organization, American Youth Understanding Diabetes Abroad, Inc. Since then, AYUDA Inc. has given over $1.75 million with of diabetes supplies and services to children in developing countries. They have also sponsored summer camps in South America for the last six years to help children not only learn about their diabetes but also how to live with the disease. Over 550 children have benefited from these camps. AYUDA Inc. has also sponsored diabetes youth leadership conferences in South America.

For Campo Amigo Ecuador 2005, AYUDA Inc. needs volunteers. The applications must received by March 1, 2005. Volunteers would receive diabetes education and cultural training in California in June 10 - 14. Applicants would be in Ecuador from July 7 - August 8.

For more information:

Ben Clements
1707 N St. NW
Washington DC 20036 or

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Last Updated: Wednesday November 05, 2014 21:27:24
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