Emmy's Friends: The Cause We're Camping For

Beyond having a great time in a beautiful place, we’re all at Campout For The Cause for a greater purpose.  Ever since the beginning, 11 years ago, “The Cause” was just as important as the music, the location, and the people. The festival was created to bring it all together.

Over the years, The Cause has changed to reflect the variety of important humanitarian and environmental issues close to the festival’s heart. Never did its founders imagine that one day their Non-Profit Organization of choice would be one that was established in support of their own flesh and blood, heart and soul. When Emery Welle, the five-month-old daughter of Site Operations Director Michael Welle, was diagnosed with a rare childhood cancer called embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma, everything changed.

“We went through 2 years of craziness, living across the country for treatment, living in Denver, going through all the motions, everything that exists in that world, very little of which is nice.”

While Emmy was undergoing treatment, The Welle family had to spend an exorbitant amount of time in one hospital after the other, away from home. It was during that time that they discovered the unfortunate realities of hospital nutrition.

Nearly across the board, hospital food is poorly sourced and unhealthy. Organic food isn’t even a consideration. Kids just aren’t being fed what their bodies need to recover.

“Even if you’re a healthy parent treating a sick kid, you're not treating yourself well because you don't have an opportunity to live better and eat better while you're stuck in a hospital. Nothing is being offered in that world. There are something like 50 nutritionists at a children's hospital and, statistically, only 2 of them are advocates for organic care.” -Michael Welle

So The Welle’s created a fund for young patients and families in similar situations, and they called it Emmy’s Friends.

"Emmy's Friends Foundation is designed to help young patients and their families who are facing life-threatening illnesses; to receive better access to fresh and wholesome organic foods, nutritional guidance and bountiful resources for healthy living. This specific focus represents the largest deficit in the overall experience of dealing with a child facing a life threatening illness; a need for improved wellness for the entire family.”

One hundred percent of Campout For The Cause proceeds go to this fund, and while it was created in 2017, this year’s festival will be treated as its official launch.

Congratulations to Emmy and the Welle family for hitting 1 year cancer free! Cheers to many many more!