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Camp Brave Heart

Camp Brave Heart

Children and teens who are grieving can experience a sense of isolation as they struggle with deep and complicated feelings. Often, they do not know anyone one else who has suffered a similar loss.

Camp Brave Heart is a bereavement camp offered at no cost for children and teens who are grieving the death of someone important in their life. It is a fun, high-energy camp combined with grief education, peer bonding, and emotional support led by grief support professionals and trained volunteers.

Camp Brave Heart is a 4 day/3 night camp at John Knox Ranch in the Texas Hill Country. The camp is free of charge and open to children and teens who are grieving the death of someone important in their life. Through shared recreational and therapeutic activities, we help campers learn they are not alone as well as skills to cope with their grief as they go forward.

Over the course of four days filled with recreational and therapeutic activities, campers hear each other’s stories, explore their grief in a safe and understanding environment, and learn ways to help them cope with their loss.

– Camp Brave Heart 2023 is for children and teens who are in 1st through 12th grades in the   2022-2023 school year.
– Camp Brave Heart 2023 will be held Wednesday, June 7th through Saturday, June 10th.
– Applications open March 1st on this webpage and will be available in English and Spanish.
– Campers are accepted on a first come basis after determining that the child is emotionally ready and able to participate and benefit from the camp.

The following will be given priority:
– Children who have never attended Camp Brave Heart (or 2018’s Camp Erin Central Texas)
– Children who have attended Camp Brave Heart and experienced another death since attending
– Children who have only attended Camp Brave Heart virtually (2020 or 2021)

If a child or teen has attended in a previous year and they do not fall into a category above, they will be placed on a waitlist. If any camper spots are open after the application deadline, they will be offered to return campers two weeks before camp. Available space will be dependent on which age group(s) have room for additional campers.

Please contact Bereavement Supervisor Maggie Cochran at 512-342-4784 or mcochran@hospiceaustin.org if you have any questions about camp. Se habla español. Camp Brave Heart is provided to families free of charge due in large part to the financial support of generous donors.

Hospice Austin offers additional bereavement support services for children, teens and adults. If you would like further information about our resources or other grief resources in the community, please call 512-342-4700 or click here.

Camp Brave Heart 2022
To see pictures from the 2022 camp, please click here.

Check out CBS Austin’s story last year on Camp Brave Heart!


A Letter from a Camper Camp Brave Heart Campers Anastasia, Emma and Madison

I went to Camp Brave Heart honestly thinking it wouldn’t help. Then I got to camp. It was ok to cry, ask questions, tell people how you really felt. We did things that helped me understand what I was feeling. And there was nothing awkward when you said “My _____ passed,” because we all understood the feeling well enough in order to not make someone else feel it. At Camp Brave Heart, I also made lifetime bonds with four friends who also lost their dads. We meet up on holidays, birthdays, any day we can really, and my little brother does the same with his friends he made at camp. Thank you for letting me tell you how Camp Brave Heart has helped me even now when I’m 14.

Have a nice day,

Madison attended camp when she was 12 and wrote this letter at 14. After turning 18, Madison volunteered at Camp Brave Heart for several summers to help other children cope with losing someone they love.