Children's lives intersect with many different people who are natural resources for them and for your family. We encourage you to communicate with your pediatrician, the school counselor, your spiritual and religious community and any others that might be sources of additional strength and support for you and your child. In addition, the following organizations can be particularly helpful at this time.
American Cancer Society
Provides information on talking to children about cancer, as well as numerous other cancer-related topics.
American Psychosocial Oncology Society
Provides a free Helpline to connect patients and families with local counseling services, as well as webcasts for professionals on topics such as “Cancer 101 for Mental Health Professionals,” and “Psychosocial Aspects of Cancer Survivorship” (co-sponsored by the Lance Armstrong Foundation).
Provides free professional help to all people affected by cancer through counseling, support groups, education, information, and referral and direct financial assistance. They offer online, telephone, and face-to-face support groups to those affected by cancer.
Children’s Treehouse Foundation
Founded in January of 2001 in Denver, Colorado, an organization providing hospital-based, cancer-focused, psychosocial intervention training and programming dedicated to improving the emotional health of children whose parents have cancer. Granted 501(c) (3) status as a public charity by the Internal Revenue Service. Creators of CLIMB program.
CLIMB and REACH programs
CLIMB- Children’s Lives Include Moments of Bravery
CLIMB® helps to normalize feelings of sadness, anxiety, fear and anger of the children, while stimulating improved communication between the children and the parents. The free, six-week program is designed to help children of parents or grandparents with cancer deal with the emotional stress the disease can cause.
REACH-This support program is for adolescents ages 13-19 who have cancer in their family. The three-hour event features doctors speaking about cancer and it's treatments and a tour of the Middlesex Hospital Cancer Center facilities. Pizza is included. Revolving admission. For information, call Wendy Peterson, APRN at (860) 344-6763
Comfort Zone Camp
Comfort Zone Camp is a free bereavement camp for children who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, or primary caregiver. It includes confidence building programs and age-based support groups that work to break the emotional isolation grief often brings. The camps are offered to children 7-17, and are held year-round across the Country.
Council of Dads
Bestselling author Bruce Feiler was a young father when he was diagnosed with cancer. Worried about his daughters, he asked six men to form a “Council of Dads” to help guide them through their lives. This site is designed to help someone do the same, male or female.
The Cove Center for Grieving Children
Family and children’s programs designed to address the unique needs of children and teens who have experienced the death of a significant person in their lives. The main focus of all Cove programs is to help grieving children and teenagers learn healing and coping strategies, as well as creative communication that help validate their emotions and guide them toward transforming their unresolved grief.
The Dougy Center: The National Center for Grieving Children and Families
Provides free support in a safe place where children, teens, young adults, and their families grieving a death can share their experiences. The center offers support and training locally, nationally and internationally to individuals and organizations seeking to assist children in grief. We are supported solely through private support from individuals, foundations and companies.
Lance Armstrong Foundation
LAF offers information and services to cancer survivors and the professionals who care for them.
Parenting at a Challenging Time program based at Massachusetts General Hospital. The site contains many resources including specific guidelines for parents as they work to understand how best to support their children and families as they navigate their own diagnosis of cancer.
National Cancer Institute
The Life Institute
This organization’s online publication “Conversations from the Heart” provides an annotated list of resources for parents and professionals who want to learn more about how to have developmentally appropriate conversations with children about serious illness and death.
Living Beyond Breast Cancer
A national education and support organization with the goal of improving quality of life and helping patients take an active role in ongoing recovery or management of the disease.
Lotsa Helping Hands
Free, private, web-based communities for organizing friends, family, and colleagues – your ‘circles of community’ – during times of need. Easily coordinate activities and manage volunteers with their intuitive group calendar.
People Living With Cancer
A site from the American Society for Clinical Oncology that offers educational information for patients and families.
Rainbows International Grief Support For Children
International children’s charity dedicated to helping youth successfully navigate the very difficult grief process.
The Wellness Community
A national, nonprofit organization that provides free online and in-person support and information to people living with cancer and their families.
Sesame Street “When Families Grieve”
DVD, guide for parents and children’s story.
The website presents families' personal stories about coping with the death of a parent, as well as strategies that have helped these families move forward.
Arthur: When Someone You Know Has Cancer
A cartoon activity booklet for families based on the episode of Arthur called “The Great MacGrady” in which Arthur and his friends all react differently to the news that Mrs. MacGrady has cancer; Lance Armstrong guest stars.
The booklet is provided by LiveStrong.