September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month, a particularly salient time to note that thousands of children are diagnosed
with some form of cancer every year. The Kids Cancer Alliance works tirelessly year round to make an impact, helping kids to live as kids despite their illnesses. Growing, sharing, learning, just having simple fun, these things are of immense importance to all kids, but that's especially so for kids facing this terrible disease. They are forced by circumstance to grow up far too quickly; they are at high risk of losing a sense of joy in their lives.
During Summer months, the organization hosts special weeklong camps for young patients as well as their siblings. Here, they enjoy doing all the things indispensable to the camping experience – arts and crafts, swimming, hiking and of course, making s‘mores. A staff of doctors and nurses are ever present and vigilant in case of emergency and to administer ongoing care. For children too ill to travel, the Kids Cancer Alliance has the Camp-In program, designed to bring the experience of camp directly to them. Family Retreat Weekends are also part of the organization's offerings. These allow full families with kids fighting cancer to take trips where they can relax, rejuvenate, and bond.
At quarterly events throughout the year, the kids reunite and reconnect for recreational outings. Making friends with other people experiencing the same challenges is such an essential part of life, and these kids need that kind of companionship perhaps more than anyone.
With Meals and More, KCA offers unique hot meals to these special kids and their families. These dining experiences make special occasions out of regular days and help to break up the monotony of time spent in the hospital. Thanks to the Flashes of Hope program, families can also receive professional quality photos. These photos document the progress of treatment, as well as capture moments of happiness during difficult times, providing something positive and full of love to reflect upon for years to come.
If you wish to help, there are two big ways: you can donate, or you can volunteer. All of the programs offered by KCA are absolutely free of charge for families, and they need people of all walks of life to help them keep running smoothly.
For more information and opportunities, please visit kidscanceralliance.org.