Northern California Chapter Juvenile Arthritis (JA) Programs
Welcome to the Juvenile Arthritis Programs page for Northern California! Below you will find a description of the programs and services we offer in our chapter area for families and their children living with Juvenile Arthritis and related rheumatic diseases. If your child has been newly diagnosed with JA or a related disease, please contact Emma Davis at 415-356-5488 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information and to be added to our JA mailing list.
You can also read more about what is JA, who gets JA, what you can do about JA, and what life with JA is like at arthritis.org/juvenile-arthritis. Be sure to also check out our unique website designed just for kids to learn about what life with arthritis is like here arthritistoday.org/kgat.
JA Family Education Day
This 2013 program will be held on Saturday, April 20, from 10am to 2pm at Little House Activity Center in Menlo Park, CA.
JA Family Education Day features medical professionals from Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford University and the University of California, San Francisco. If there are other hospitals/medical professionals that would like to be involved, we always need additional help!
Parents enjoy interactive discussions with pediatric rheumatologists and workshop leaders from both of these outstanding universities as well as other health professionals from around the Bay Area. Children’s activities are educational and fun. Lunch is included and provides parents a time to network and get support from other families. Click here to register.
Please note the new date: and new location:
Date: July 10-14, 2013 (extended one day so we are back to our full 5 days of camp!)
Location: Camp Arroyo, 5555 Arroyo Road, Livermore, CA 94550
This 2013 program will be held from July 10-14 at Camp Arroyo, Livermore, CA.
Established in 2002, Camp Milagros (Spanish for “Miracles”) is the only camp in Northern California developed specifically for children ages 8-13 with JA and related rheumatic diseases.
The purpose of this camp is to educate children on how to manage their life-long disease by building self-esteem through sports, arts and crafts, and other camp activities. Camp offers a positive learning and growing environment for children with arthritis and related diseases, while also providing opportunities for children to discover and develop new skills and ways to interact with their peers. This discovery and personal growth will enable the children to continue developing their lifelong skills in disease self-management.
Families are requested to contribute a $50 registration fee, which can be waived upon request. Click here to download the Camp Milagros application packet.
The Arthritis Foundation, Northern California Chapter would like to recognize The Taylor Family Foundation for hosting Camp Milagros held at The Taylor Family Foundation at Camp Arroyo this year. The Taylor Family Foundation's mission is to preserve the wellness and enhance the quality of life for children in Northern California with life-threatening and chronic diseases, disabilities and youth at-risk through unique therapeutic experiences and support. For more information, please visit ttff.org.
Juvenile Arthritis National Conference
This 2013 program will be held from July 18-21 in Anaheim, CA
The JA National Conference provides both educational and fun experiences along with many new resources for families. Below are the different tracks available to families.
Children and Teen Program: This program is organized by age groups, and each group is supervised by a team of highly experienced program activity leaders (PALs) including pediatric rheumatology health professionals, teachers, and parents of children with rheumatic diseases. All activities are designed to help children and teens overcome obstacles, recognize and accept differences in themselves and others, and to build and maintain rewarding friendships that can last a lifetime.
Young Adult Program: A young adult track is offered to people ages 18 and older and focuses on special concerns such as communication, social issues, health management, and self-advocacy as they relate to young individuals.
Parent Program: The parent program is designed to help parents learn as much as possible about their child’s arthritis and/or related conditions and their care, as well as the effects on the whole family. The workshops help answer many of the questions parents have about treatment, the role of the family, school issues, dealing with emotions, coping mechanisms, and support groups.
Scholarships are available. Click here to download an application.
JA Teen Retreat
Please note new date and location:
Date: October 11-13, 2013
Location: Naturebridge at Golden Gate (formerly known as the Headlands Institute) 1033 Fort Cronkhite, Sausalito, CA 94965
This 2013 program will be held from October 11-13, 2013 at Naturebridge at Golden Gate.
Established in 2007, the Teen Retreat has already proven to be a very positive addition to our current JA Programs. The idea to start a retreat specifically for teens, ages 14-18 and in high school, with Juvenile Arthritis came after our JA Committee decided a program was needed to keep our Camp Milagros (which caps at age 13) participants involved with the resources of the Arthritis Foundation. In addition to offering a mechanism for former campers to stay involved, the committee wanted to provide this age group with continuing information on self-managing their arthritis, at a time when independence, self-reliance and peer pressure become important parts of a teenager’s life.
The Teen Retreat offers a safe environment for teenagers to get to know one another and grow individually as well. We hope that they will increase valuable life skills, such as utilizing public transportation, staying safe in a new city, and the value of connecting with other teenagers who understand personally the challenges that their peers work through daily. This discovery and personal growth will assist each of these teens in developing lifelong skills in many aspects of life, including self-management of their disease.
Families are requested to contribute a $100 registration fee, which can be waived upon request. Click here to download a Teen Retreat application.
Kids Get Arthritis Too
The Arthritis Foundation serves the special needs of children and youth with childhood rheumatic diseases and their families. The Arthritis Foundation provides information and support through educational and social programs.
See our new age-specific “Kids Get Arthritis Too” webpages for kids (ages 6-9), tweens (ages 10-13), and teens (ages 14-18). Visit these at arthritistoday.org/kgat.
Pen Pal Program
The Arthritis Foundation Pen Pal Program provides the opportunity for children with juvenile arthritis or a related condition to make a new friend and share feelings and experiences. Children sign up by filling out a questionnaire and are assigned a pen pal with similar interests. They might even get to write to a pen pal out of state! Click here for the questionnaire.