Welcoming Back Kat Shreve to Camp Kudzu!

We have just returned from another amazing Kudzu Session. Our 2018 Teen Retreat was held February 2nd-4th, and we provided a fantastic experience for 82 campers and more than 40 incredible volunteers! An extra thank you to Dr. Muir and Dr. Anderson and our committed clinical team for their extra time and focus this weekend as they helped make everything possible. We are proud of the protocols, planning, and added measures put in place by our CK Staff, Medical Staff, and Volunteers to ensure the safety and experience of our campers!
There are so many exciting projects in the works with education, programing and development and our fast pace to 2018 continues as we set our aim to expand our program offerings year-round. The timing could not be more perfect -- and we are very excited to extend a special welcome to  Kathryn (Kat) Shreve , who is rejoining the Camp Kudzu Team as Director of Programs, starting in late February.
We are thrilled to have her join us – a huge win for Camp Kudzu and I am particularly excited about having a full staff as our excellent team pursues our goals of expanding Camp Kudzu's footprint across the state and serving more children and families with type 1 diabetes.
Exciting things are continuing to happen and I am excited to have you with us on this journey. This month, we are particularly thankful for our amazing volunteers and committed partners and supporters! Keep reading to see everything we're working on and ways you can help.
-Rob Shaw, Executive Director
We Had a Blast at Teen Retreat!
A camper waves and smiles as she rides on a zipline.
Campers smile as they hold a rope for tug of war.
Campers smile to the camera during an arts and crafts session at the 2018 Teen Retreat.
Campers enjoy an evening hangout session at the 2018 Teen Retreat.
Kat Shreve Joins Camp Kudzu!
Camp Kudzu Director of Programs Kat Shreve
Hello Kudzu Community! I am thrilled to rejoin the Camp Kudzu team. I can’t wait to reconnect with you (and, for those I don’t know, connect with you for the first time). What an incredible time for Camp Kudzu!!! There’s a new energy in the air and I am thrilled to be a part of that breath.

I am anxious to compliment my talents with those of the board, the volunteers, the campers, and the Kudzu staff to transition from our teenage years (after all, this is our 18th summer) into a robust future of expansion and growth. My plan in the upcoming months is to host town hall meetings - be they live or virtual - with the Camp Kudzu Community to listen and share; amplify Camp Kudzu’s outreach into new geographies; and enhance leadership in our volunteer base. We will continue to do those things that we do well AND do even more things well.

Admittedly, I may need a little brushing up on my Peanut Butter and Jelly Time Choreography and names. In my head, all campers have been frozen, so to speak, at the same age they were when I left. I will ask for your help for helping me to get all things Kudzu down pat, again.

And while it seems like the warm days of summer are very far away, our company will soon be here... until then, Have a Kudzu Day!

Summer Applications are Open for Both Campers and Staff!
A camp counselor hugs two campers.
Come enjoy the summer of a lifetime with us! Click the link to start your application today!
Love Your Body!
Assorted fruits and vegetables, including carrots, strawberries, and kale.
Popularly recognized as a month to promote heart health, February is also Eating Disorder Awareness Month in the United States. With the large role that food plays in the management of type 1 diabetes, it isn’t difficult to fall into not-so-healthy practices when it comes to your relationship with food. Unhealthy habits can sometimes lead to diagnosable eating disorders if not recognized and treated early.

Think a diagnosable eating disorder seems a little far fetched? Think again. Here’s some food for thought. A group of researchers surveyed teens with 477 teens with type 1 diabetes for an article published in The International Journal of Eating Disorders, with survey questions related to eating behaviors and body image. Approximately half of the girls and a fifth of the boys reported regularly engaging in behaviors to avoid weight gain, such as reducing their insulin doses to intentionally cover carbohydrate consumption incorrectly—a behavior that, if engaged in regularly, is known as diabulimia. Even more astonishing, a staggering 88% of girls surveyed reported the desire to be thinner and 75% of boys surveyed reported body dissatisfaction (43% with a desire to be thinner, 33% with a desire to be larger).

Disordered thoughts or behaviors can be a dangerous, slippery slope. If you think your teen may be struggling with body image issues or establishing a healthy relationship with food, don’t be embarrassed to ask for help. By reaching out to a psychologist or registered dietitian that specializes in eating disorders and/or type 1 diabetes, your child can receive the help they need.

For more information, see the full article published online August 30 th , 2017 in The International Journal of Eating Disorders .  

Contributed by Anna Albritton, MS, RD, LD, CDE
5th Annual Camp Kudzu Iron(ing) Man Competition!
If your New Years’ resolution includes building muscle, you might consider competing in the 5 th Annual Ironing Man Competition to be held on Saturday, February 10, when Dr. Quentin VanMeter will attempt to defend his title by lifting his iron to fend off clothing and table linen from 9 to 5. Challengers, including Jason O'Kelley and Steve Caruso, are lining up to defy him and prove that they cannot be defeated by man, shirt or napkin. You may participate by throwing your hat in the ring or dropping your linen off to any of the participating men and pledging your support to any competitor.

On a serious note, donations and pledges to the Ironing Man Competition raise thousands of dollars per year to ensure that Camp Kudzu provides excellent diabetes education, self-management programs and necessary scholarships to children living with type 1 diabetes. 
A stylized photo of Dr. Quentin VanMeter.
A stylized photo of Steve Caruso.
A stylized photo of Jason O'Kelley.
Our Volunteers Make Camp Possible!
Camp Kudzu works tirelessly to make life better for children and teens with type 1 diabetes. While we are incredibly proud of the leadership of our board and staff, we know we cannot overstate the importance of the efforts made by the volunteers of our organization: we know we could not do this without you!

While Valentine's Day is often noted for feelings of romantic love, we want to express how much we love the volunteers who make gifts of time and effort to help us succeed in our goal. Over the past year, we have enjoyed an amazing level of growth thanks to the work of our many volunteers providing countless hours of service to the organization. We look forward to partnering with all of you again in the near future!

If you are looking for ways to volunteer and support Camp Kudzu, contact Anna Rambo. We currently have a need for office volunteers as we prepare for summer camp. Tasks include folding and stuffing mailings, filing, and more.
Let's Get Ready to Par-Tee!!
Camp Kudzu will host the 14th Annual Kudzu Cup Fore! Kids on Monday, May 21st on the magnificent course at Country Club of the South Johns Creek. We are looking for a few good men and women to form 28 foursomes to compete and earn great prizes. We have also added some new, exciting sponsorships:

Presenting Sponsor ($10,000) (one available)
Leaderboard Sponsor ($7,500) (one available)
Golf Cart Sponsor ($5,000) (one available)
Practice Range Sponsor ($5,000) (one available)
Lunch Sponsor ($5,000) (one available)
Camper Sponsor ($3,500) (Multiple Available)
Yeti Sponsor ($3,500) (Multiple Available)
Beverage Sponsor ($3,500) (one available)
Cart Path Sponsor ($1,500) (Multiple Available)
Contest Sponsor ($1,000) (3 available)
Tee Sponsor ($500) (Multiple Available)

If you would like more information about sponsorships, please email Doris Pierce-Hardy.
Camp Kudzu Wins 2017 Georgia Natural Gas True Blue Award
An independent panel of judges selected Camp Kudzu as the 2017 TrueBlue Community Award winner for its support of children who live with type 1 diabetes. The award, which includes a $10,000 contribution and a commercial on WXIA-TV, is awarded based upon an organization’s selfless commitment to the Georgia Natural Gas state-wide service area. In addition to providing needed services, an organization must be able to demonstrate that it provides meaningful and lasting impact in the Georgia Community in children’s education, senior citizen needs, energy efficiency or the environmental protection/preservation. Camp Kudzu and its board of directors is pleased to be the recipient of this award. 

Thank you Georgia Natural Gas!  
KNOW Foods
“KNOW Foods is the leading provider of grain-free food products. Based in Atlanta, KNOW Foods produces delicious, nutritionally superior, natural, non-GMO, grain/gluten free and exceedingly low glycemic index alternatives to traditional grain-based foods. Products include: bread slices, buns, waffles, wraps, donuts, muffins, cupcakes, cookies, croutons, pancake mix, bread mix, pasta & more.”

As a partner of Camp Kudzu, KNOW Foods offers a ten percent discount on any online order for any member of the Kudzu family. Simply enter CAMPKUDZU10 at checkout.
Thanks to Our Corporate Supporters!
Camp Kudzu is serious about providing great stewardship of the funds donated by the philanthropic community. We solute the following corporate supporters for offering their support in Fiscal Year 2018 which began on October 1, 2017.
American Family Insurance
Atlanta Magazine
Bryan Cave LLP
Burr & Forman LLP
Clayton Homes
The Color Spot
Crown South Realty
Domain Capital Advisors LLC
Focus Brands
Georgia Eye Partners
Georgia Natural Gas
Insulet Corporation
John B. Hipp Development
Joyn, Inc
Just Waxing Inc.
King & Spalding
Metro Waterproofing, Inc
Morgan Stanley
Northside Hospital
The Oakhurst Corner Company
Phillips Electrical Technologies
Physician's Alliance Of America, Inc.
Precision Planning, Inc.
RBM of Atlanta
Van Meter Pediatric Endocrinology, P.C.
The Was Strip, Inc.
2018 Camp Kudzu Partners