At the young age of 9, Andres Galindo realized his mom was continuously scheduling doctor appointments. Although he witnessed much of the aftermath of the treatment, he was mostly sheltered from it. His mom passed away in 2016 after battling metastatic breast cancer for 5 years. Her passing was a devastating surprise to him.
After Andres' mom passed, he and his 5-year-old sister went to live with his father and step-mom full-time. Andres and his sister relocated; therefore they transferred to a new school in a new city. Andres was introverted, kept to himself, and didn't speak up much at school. Andres' school recommended that he attend Experience Camps.
Fast-forward two years later and Andres is now in middle school. He rides his bike to and from school daily, has joined the cross-country team, has excelled in school, and participated for the first time in his school's talent show. Andres is thriving, and even taking 7 full periods of class! and is thriving in the juggling of 7 periods.
Andres' stepmother tells us about his resilience. "He is an amazing big brother. Since the passing of his mom, I have adopted Andres and his sister. They share a half sister now. He genuinely cares and protects them. Andres loves his big brother status because that means he gets two scoops of ice cream instead of their one, and gets to order from the adult menu."
Andres' loss is one that has changed his life forever. Experience CalEx camp, has, undoubtedly, helped and taught him how to cope with that irreplaceable loss.
"The CalEx experience is magical and if there was ever the Land of Oz, Andres has found it - along with all the other campers that attend throughout the country," says Andres' stepmom.
Andres is constantly looking forward to CalEx camp and has made a commitment to himself to return as a youth lead or volunteer as soon as he's of the right age.
"You had the power all along my dear," is what his family tells him all the time, and thanks to Experience Camps, he found it.
Andres' whole family is forever grateful for what he got out of camp. "On behalf of my husband and I, thank you for the selfless and incredible work your organization does. You have helped in the healing process with the most humane and simple principles of LOVE and care."