Camp Wakchazi: Sibling Bereavement Program

Camp Wakchazi is an initiative of the Supportive Care program at UPMC Children’s Hospital, a summer camp dedicated to addressing the needs of bereaved siblings. Campers are encouraged to make new friends and share their experiences while taking time to heal in a safe, supportive environment. Camp Wakchazi 2020 was a virtual experience.

Wakchazi is a Native American word for sunflower. UPMC Children’s chose this name because we believe that our group of siblings who have lost a brother or sister are like sunflowers — strong, resilient, and finding the light on dark days.

The Supportive Care program, founded in 2003, includes pain management, assistance with decision-making, end-of-life care and bereavement support. The team aims to improve the quality of life for patients and families to optimize their comfort during otherwise difficult times. 

If you have questions about Camp Wakchazi, contact Melanie Szigethy, coordinator, at melanie.szigethy@upmc.edu412-748-1596.