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freqently asked questions

What is the Beat Retreat?

The Beat Retreat is a fun-filled, four-day weekend for adults with congenital heart disease. You’ll have an opportunity to participate in a mix of traditional camp activities – all geared to your physical ability and comfort level. Equally important, you’ll have an opportunity to make new friends and learn from the experiences of other CHD patients. You’ll also have an opportunity to chat with healthcare professionals in a relaxed and informal setting. In short, it’s a weekend of fun, friends, firsts, and great food.

When is the 2018 retreat?

This year’s retreat will be held September 13-16, 2018. If you can’t make it for the entire weekend, that’s okay – come for the part that you can.

Where is it held?

The retreat is held at Camp Quin-Mo-Lac – a beautiful 240-acre camp located on the shores of Moira Lake. That’s about 30 minutes north of Belleville, Ontario (about 2.5 hours from Toronto and Ottawa). You can learn more about Camp Quin-Mo-Lac at www.campqml.org.

What happens at the retreat?

While at camp, you can look forward to a range of activities, such as campfires, canoeing, crafts, archery, initiatives, yoga, Kangaroo Kourt, skit night, and a polar bear dip. You’ll also have the opportunity to attend a range of education sessions and ask questions of cardiac healthcare professionals. All activities are geared to CHD patients. You decide which activities are right for you – based on your interests, ability and comfort level.

Here’s what a typical day looks like:

7:30     Polar Bear dip

8:30     Breakfast

9:30     Yoga

11:00   Canoeing

12:30   Lunch

1:30     Education session

3:00     Archery

4:30     Social time

5:30     Dinner

6:30     Games

8:00     Campfire

Where do we stay during the retreat?

We offer a true “camp experience.” That means you’ll stay in a comfortable, but rustic lodge. You’ll enjoy the “luxury” of a heated sleeping cabin, but you’ll also be sharing a room with others and sleeping on a bunk. Linen and pillows are not provided, so you’ll need to bring a sleeping bag and a pillow.

 How much does it cost?

We want the retreat to be as financially accessible, so we keep your cost as low as possible. All you have to pay is $150 (about one-third of the actual cost). That covers your food, accommodation and all activities (except for an optional private reflexology session). If you’re unable to pay the full $150 registration fee due to financial hardship, let us know we have payment options. We may be able to waive the registration fee. Of course, if you can afford more than the $150 registration fee, we encourage you to make a donation to the Beat Retreat to help us offset costs.


Is there a minimum age for attending?

Yes. You must be at least 18 years of age by the first day of the retreat (September 14, 2017).


How do I get there?

Many campers drive themselves. But if you don’t have a car or don’t drive, let us know and we’ll do our best to match you up with someone in your area who is coming to camp.


How do I register?

Details on how to register can be found on our REGISTER page.


Where can I get more information?

Got a question about camp? You’ve got a few options. You can:

Don’t forget to include your name in the text so we know who to contact.

our objectives

  • Provide a safe and friendly environment where CHD patients can meet and learn from each other.
  • Create a supportive social network for CHD patients.
  • Encourage CHD patients to maintain a healthy/active lifestyle.
  • Equip adult CHD patients with the knowledge and confidence needed to better manage their healthcare and cope with the day-to-day challenges of their condition.
  • Encourage adult CHD patients to remain engaged with the medical system so they receive appropriate care and follow-up.
  • Educate young adults about behaviour and lifestyle decisions that can compromise health outcomes.
  • Provide an opportunity for healthcare professionals to interact with CHD patients in a relaxed and “open” environment.

our team

The Beat Retreat is a non-profit organization run by a team of dedicated volunteers. At the heart of our volunteers is a five-member organizing committee:


Toby Cox President & Director



Toby Cox is a complex CHD patient and works as a Law Clerk in Toronto and has her own graphic design business.  She has a degree in Graphic Design from Seneca – York University and a certificate from the Institute of Law Clerks of Ontario. She was the founder of “The Beat Retreat” cardiac camp which is a specialized camp program for congenital heart patients. The camp runs for a long weekend every year in September. The Beat Retreat has been operating since 2009 and keeps growing every year.







Nora Cox Treasurer



Nora is a MOM of a congenital cardiac patient. She has a long-standing history with the Gairdner Family. In 1982 she started working with the family in their brokerage business, Joronda Resources. The working relationship continued as Nora began working for the Gairdner Family personally up until 1999. She then moved to the Gairdner Foundation that year and serves as our Office Manager. Nora is responsible for HR, helping run our various adjudication committees, coordination of our National Program and much more.






Lori Constable-Smolcic Director



Lori Constable-Smolcic RN, BScN is a complex CHD patient who is a Registered Nurse in Ontario and works in cardiac surgery triage and database.  She has a Bachelor Science of Nursing degree from Ryerson University, a CAMH Smoking Cessation Certificate from the University of Toronto, and is currently working on a Health Informatics Certificate at Ryerson University.   Lori’s family tree has been studied by geneticists due to specific CHD defects within their family that continue to be passed down to both the boys and the girls; it will skip one sibling and affect the other.











Bio to come…


ways to donate

  1. You can donate online.
  2. You can send us a cheque.
  3. You can join or sponsor Team Beat Retreat in the annual Walk of Life.
  4. You can support our silent auction.
  5. You can check our Wish List on Amazon.ca.

A donation to the Beat Retreat helps in so many ways:

A donation of $25 will help cover the cost of program supplies.

A donation of $50 will cover the cost of bottled water at the retreat (many of our campers cannot drink well water because of compromised immune systems).

A donation of $100 will cover per diem the rate of camp staff needed to run programs requiring a certified instructor (such as the climbing wall, canoeing and archery).

A donation of $250 will cover the cost of sending one camper to the retreat.

A donation of $500 will cover the cost of renting a golf cart needed to move limited-mobility campers between camp programs.

A donation of $1,000 will cover the cost of transportation for campers who have no other way to get to camp or who need wheelchair accessible transportation.

our partners

The Beat Retreat is a non-profit, all-volunteer organization. Recognizing that many CHD patients face financial hardship because of their condition, we strive to keep the cost of attending the retreat as low as possible. This means we rely on the generous support of different organizations and individuals to fund the shortfall.

Following is a list of our supporter:


Custom Carts

Local 113 – We Move Toronto

Pink Paper Flamingos


The retreat is held at Camp Quin-Mo-Lac. That’s about 30 minutes north of Belleville (about 2.5 hours from Toronto and Ottawa). Here’s how to get there.

If you are coming from the west (i.e., Toronto):

  1. Turn east off Hwy. 62 (south of Madoc) onto Quin-Mo-Lac Road.
  2. Go approximately 6 km and turn left onto Camp Road.
  3. Turn left onto Franks Road and follow the road into camp.

From the East (i.e., Ottawa):

  1. From Tweed, turn west off Hwy. 37 at the stop light at Bridge Street East.
  2. Go up the hill past the Catholic Church and follow Quin-Mo-Lac Road for 7 km.
  3. Turn right onto Camp Road.
  4. Turn left onto Franks Road and follow the road into camp.

If you use GPS, keep in mind that some GPS directions are incorrect and can take you 20 minutes away from camp.

If you have any problems or get lost, give me a call at 647-549-1198 (Toby) or 416-428-6370 (Ted)– We have our cells with us.