How we help
Our Holiday Respite House at Salamander Bay gives eligible families some essential time together to unwind, away from the intensity of their cancer journey. This is available at no cost to families on the East Coast who have a child on active treatment, are palliative or bereaved.
Our Financial Support Program provides financial aid for bereaved families in extreme financial difficulty. In some cases we will help with funeral costs for their child.View programs
Our Child Life Therapy Program teaches coping strategies to children in hospital to help them deal with their illness inside and outside of hospital. We currently fund Child Life Therapists at hospitals in NSW and VIC, whose role is to distract a child from the anxiety, pain and trauma of cancer treatment through structured play techniques. The innovative play techniques help the child to understand and cope with the medical procedures they’ll be having. These may involve sharp needles, large pills to swallow, isolation units and lying completely still – all very difficult things for an energetic or frightened young child.
Our Puppets also visit every children’s hospital in Australia. The puppets provide a welcome distraction from the anxiety, pain, discomfort and trauma of cancer treatment. If a child is in an isolation unit (often the case with certain cancer treatments), our puppets will perform for them at the window – often some of the only interaction they’re getting outside of medical procedures. The healing effects of laughter are invaluable.
Our Family and Hospital Support Coordinators play a huge role in building optimism. They’re a friendly face that visits families in each of the children’s hospitals in the country every single week to provide support to families in the early stages of their diagnosis. They do this by referring families on to the range of services Camp Quality provides and linking them up with other partnering support services.View programs
Our Primary School Education Program includes our touring puppet show for primary schools, which answers difficult questions kids have about cancer. Often the effects of cancer can be confronting for young kids - when children return to school they often look very different as a result of the side effects from their treatment. This needs to be explained to their peers so they know what the child has been through and why it’s important to support them. Importantly the puppets teach students that cancer is not contagious. The show encourages kids to be supportive of their classmate who has a mum, dad, brother or sister living with cancer - or who has cancer themselves, and reduces the likelihood of bullying, exclusion, confusion or anxiety.View programs
Away from it all
Our camps provide an essential break from the stress and intensity of the cancer journey. They build resilience and optimism because kids living with cancer and their families can meet others going through a similar thing and build strength through solidarity. Our camps are grouped according to age groups; siblings and patients are invited to attend Mini Camp, Junior Camp, Middle Camp and Graduation Camp. Parents tell us that the supportive networks that emerge from these experiences make a big difference.
Our Family Camps cater for the whole family. This is especially important for siblings, who are often scared, confused and sometimes even disappointed when their parents’ attention is suddenly completely diverted on to the child with cancer.
Our Fun Days are one-day events that give families a real boost, often when they need it most. Days like these give kids back their childhood, after cancer has attempted to steal it from them.
Our Family Experiences provide families special experiences, which get donated to us, such a Disney on Ice, zoo visits, theatre shows and trips to adventure worlds. These provide families with another opportunity to catch up on precious normality, when cancer has tried to take that away from them.View programs