When your child is diagnosed with cancer, your whole world turns upside down. Just getting through the day is often a never-ending challenge. Your child’s health often becomes an obsession. There will be moments when you feel completely helpless and alone. This does not need to be the case. There is a support system for you and your child. From the friendly face that greets you at the hospital entrance, to the unknown blood donor who provides your child a life-saving transfusion, there are a cadre of volunteers who are serving pediatric cancer patients. Here to Serve is proud to include our volunteers as members of your support team.
December 5th is International Volunteers Day (IVD). It is a day observed world-wide and created by the United Nations General Assembly in 1985. This day is an opportunity to promote volunteerism and encourage governments around the globe “to support volunteer efforts and recognize volunteer contributions.” The theme of the 2020 celebration is “Together We Can Through Volunteering.” With the onset of Covid-19 and health turmoil changing our world, coming together seems more important now than ever before; this is especially critical for children fighting cancer. Caring people from all walks of life unite to help families going through the life-altering effects of cancer; many of these heroes are unpaid volunteers. They give their time, finances, and energy to help those in need, many of whom they may never meet in person.
An African proverb states, “it takes a village to raise a child.” It takes an even stronger group of volunteers to help a child battle pediatric cancer. This point is especially true during a global pandemic. When businesses are shutting down, and cities and towns are going through quarantine, cancer treatments cannot stop. Everyday life, including things like grocery shopping and household chores, can also not be put on hold. Here to Serve will also not stop or put our guidance on hold during this challenging time.
Unfortunately, our volunteer Care Communities within Here to Serve cannot wave a magic wand to rid your child of cancer. Still, we can provide assistance and support that builds a stable environment for families during the treatment period. Family Care Coordinators help your family set up and manage online Care Communities so that your focus and energy can be spent entirely on your child. Our Family Care Coordinators will conduct a needs assessment and provide resources to meet your specific care requests.
Our free-of-charge services include:
- Child care
- Holiday preparation and decorations
- Holiday gift-giving
- Pet care
- Organization of fundraising events
For over 35 years, IVD has recognized volunteers worldwide, but one day a year is not enough to honor these compassionate individuals. At Here to Serve, we pay tribute to the generosity of our volunteers every day. And we encourage those who have the time and ability to join our family of volunteers and help those in need. Please check our current volunteer opportunities and share them with friends and family. If you are unable to help with your time, there are still other ways to support our cause by donating funds and items. Together we can all help children fight pediatric cancer.
By Chris Smith