Camp New Dawn

Camp New Dawn takes the essential ingredients of summer camp - fun, food and friendship - and adds activities that help children and teens express what it feels like to lose someone who they love.

Camp New Dawn is a 3-day, two-night retreat for children and teens who are grieving normally after the death of an important loved one. Campers learn healthy coping skills that will benefit them throughout their lives.

Camp New Dawn also includes a family retreat. Parents of campers arrive for an overnight session with other adults before they are joined by their children. During the second half of the family camp the adults and children play, talk and learn together. They take home experiences and skills that help them rely on one another to heal as they honor the memory of their departed loved ones.




Camp Activities

All activities are conducted with one-on-one support and close supervision by trained staff and volunteers.

  • Swimming
  • Fishing
  • Arts & crafts
  • Challenge course
  • Campfire
  • Games
  • Music

Campers engage in group discussions and activities with other kids who have experienced the death of a loved one. During their weekend campers interact with professional grief counselors who help them learn about and express grief in a safe, natural environment.


The success of Camp New Dawn depends on a group of caring and compassionate adults who volunteer as buddies. Each camper is paired with an adult buddy for the weekend. Applicants must be 21 years of age or older. New buddies must complete a three-hour training program. All buddies participate in a 4-hour training program prior to the start of camp.


$30 per camper. No child is turned away because of inability to pay.



To register a camper, or to become a Camp New Dawn volunteer complete the forms below and return to 255 Comet Drive, Centreville, MD 21617. For more information, contact Rhonda Knotts, 443-262-4109.





Make a Donation

Compass Regional Hospice relies on community donations to cover camp expenses so that every child who will benefit from the experience can attend. Donations in any amount are welcome. Businesses and individuals can also sponsor Camp New Dawn. Click here to donate online.  For more information about how to make a donation, contact Kenda Leager,, 443-262-4106.








  • "Children and teens are often the forgotten mourners. Because they grieve differently than adults, their needs are often overlooked."

Who: This retreat is designed for children, teens and families grieving after the death of a loved one.

Where: Camp Pecometh, 136 Bookers Wharf Road, near Centreville, Maryland, on the beautiful Chester River.


Retreat for Children & Teens

Ages 7-17: Saturday, August 19 at 12:30 p.m. until  Monday, August 21at 4:30 p.m.

Mini Camp for Young Children

Ages 4-6: Monday, August 21 at 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Family retreat

Adult retreat: Sunday, August 20 at 4:00 p.m.

Adults & Children: Sunday, August 20 at 4:30 p.m. until Tuesday, August 22 at 7:00 p.m.


Camp New Dawn Continues to Grow Into 2017

In 2016, 101 campers, seven families, and 134 volunteers had fun, built friendships and were taught healthy ways to express their grief. “This was the largest group in Camp New Dawn’s 22‐year history, which reflects the significant need for grief support in our community,” says Rhonda Knotts, Camp New Dawn Director. “Camp New Dawn provides individuals a place to normalize their feelings and meet others facing similar circumstances." Read More>>

Camp New Dawn Fundraiser

Compass Regional Hospice returns to the patio of Fisherman’s Crab Deck in Grasonville on Thursday, June 22, to host a fundraiser for Camp New Dawn. The event begins at 5:00 p.m. and continues through 8:00 p.m. Everyone is welcome and admission is free. For more information, contact, Kenda Leager, 443-262-4106. Read More>>