American Friends of Sunrise-Israel

Welcome to American Friends of Sunrise‒Israel


When a child is diagnosed with cancer, the pain and suffering they endure is unfathomable.  It also turns the entire family’s world upside down in ways never before imagined.

Sunrise‒Israel is a magical place where Israeli children with cancer and their siblings can enjoy the wonders of childhood which have been so tragically taken away; where they can can play, laugh and form friendships…where children with cancer can just be children.

Imagine those lonely days are filled with sunshine and laughter…



How You Can Help...

You have the ability to help build the future. Through your generosity we can make sure that every child fighting this devastating illness and their siblings can laugh, make friends…and just be a kid! Some opportunities to help fund Sunrise‒Israel: Become a Sunrise-Israel champion by sponsoring: a cocktail reception, golf outing or a different fundraising opportunity Honor someone with a tribute gift Establish an endowment fund in your name or in the name of someone meaningful to you Have a child becoming a Bar or Bat-Mitzvah? Ask about our Share Your Simcha opportunities! 

Sunrise‒Israel is an initiative of the Sunrise Association whose mission is to bring back the joys of childhood to children with cancer and their siblings through the creation of Summer Day Camps, Year-Round Programs and In-Hospital Recreational Activities, all offered free of charge.

Since its inception in 2006 in the US, Sunrise has enriched the lives of over 15,000 children around the world dealing with cancer in eight unique summer day camps and 38 in-hospital programs. The first Sunrise‒Israel Day Camp opened in 2010 as a program of the Friedberg Jewish Community Center, located in Oceanside, NY.  Today there are three Sunrise-Israel Camps — Be’er Sheva in the South, Beit Yehoshua in the Center and Ramat Yochanan in the North — opened to Israeli children of all denominations, ages 3½ to 17. Together with two in-hospital programs and a spring day camp, Sunrise‒Israel serves over 1,500 children annually. Children come from 96 communities throughout Israel serving 600 families through seven affiliated hospitals.

When a child has cancer, it affects the entire family.  Siblings also face tremendous challenges socially and recreationally as the family’s focus turn to their brother’s or sister’s medical needs.  But at Sunrise, siblings can play and interact as other brothers and sisters do; they are free to be with friends in a very normal, fun way while escaping the constant worry found in a home with a chronically ill child.  In addition, siblings learn to better understand their brother’s or sister’s illness and their own feelings.

Daily activities are the same as a traditional camping program – swim, sports, drama, arts & crafts, etc. ‒ but are designed with special features to best accommodate the needs of our children.  Parents have peace of mind when their children attend Sunrise knowing that activities are designed especially for them and medical personnel are always able to provide expert care if needed. All staff – counselors, specialists and volunteers – are specially trained prior to camp to best serve our campers.

Recognizing the extraordinary financial demands that a child’s chronic illness can have on a family, Sunrise Day Camps and Year-Round Programs are always offered free of charge

Ever see a child not want to leave a hospital because they’re having too much fun?

At Sunrise on Wheels, it happens all the time! Sunrise on Wheels is an innovative program that provides a day filled with Sunrise fun to more than 700 children awaiting treatment in both in-patient and out-patient pediatric oncology units. Sunrise on Wheels currently operates at Ruth Rappaport Children’s Hospital at Rambam Health Care Campus in Haifa and Soroka University Medical Center in Be’er Sheva.

Volunteers wheel a rainbow trunk bursting with toys, games and activities directly into outpatient areas, changing a difficult time into a day of camp fun! In addition, volunteers visit children in their rooms when they are too ill to be in the playroom.