Child Life Therapy
During a child’s cancer treatment cycle, a Child Life Therapist encourages coping skills through play, education and distraction, helping to minimise stress and anxiety.
The better a child’s experience in a hospital setting, the better their long-term psychological wellbeing. Educating patients about procedures can also lead to a reduced need for general anaesthetic or sedation, reducing stress on the body.
Child Life Therapists work in hospitals and teach children strategies that help them manage their illness inside and outside hospital.
Camp Quality is one of the major funders of Child Life Therapy positions in Australia. We currently fund Child Life Therapists in NSW and VIC. In NSW, we fund Child Life Therapists at Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead and John Hunter Hospital in Newcastle. We also fund Child Life Therapists in Victoria at Royal Children’s Hospital and Monash Medical Centre. Our Child Life Therapists held almost 3,000 play sessions in NSW and over 1,000 in Victoria in 2016.
Location:Programs are available in NSW and in VIC
Benefits of Child Life Therapy
- Research shows that Child Life Therapy can improve a child’s coping skills during the cancer treatment cycle
- Improved experience in hospital leads to better long-term mental and physical wellbeing for children
- Treatment education can reduce the need for pain intervention and stress on the body
- Child Life Therapists takes into account the wellbeing of the entire family, including siblings
Camp Quality Graduate
Thank you so much Camp Quality for the past 11 years. Some of my best memories are being on camp. Camp Quality has always been there for me and my family and then to graduate today is amazing.
I thought that everyone put a huge effort in to grad camp so thank you to everyone who helped organised it and the other states. I hope to see lots of you again some day.
Madelyne, Heath’s Grandma
Heath loved it, didn't matter what activity they did, he just loved it. He would talk about it for weeks and weeks and weeks, and he was just always so happy when he came back.
Isn't that marvellous that someone can make another person so happy? It becomes the most important thing in these kids' lives.
Rachael, Leah’s Mum
Leah is shy but Camp Quality built up her confidence when they met us on the ward. Soon she was courageous enough to join the activities by herself and try new things.
I can't explain how important it is just to have somebody like Camp Quality there. I can't really put into words how thankful I am. It's part of treatment. It's part of healing.
Ruth, Harley’s Grandma
Harley just doesn't know how to act around other children. He struggled to make friends. But that changed when Camp Quality came into our lives.
It's great he can go on camp and do skateboarding and soccer and I think he enjoys the male bonding.
My Seth had been absent for a while with all the bullying, appointments and surgery. But today he's back, he's happy and he's confident. My boy is home. I can't thank you enough for giving my boy the most amazing week of his life.
Sheila, Maya’s Mum
After being stuck in hospital for so long, you take any opportunity to see your child happy, like at Camp Quality’s Family Fun Day. Plus - Maya got to see the kids she met in hospital again. They’re her friends now. We’re like one big happy family.
How it works
Child Life Therapists work with the child ‘one on one’ in the hospital environment, including bedside, in clinical areas, treatment rooms and small group situations.
Importantly, Child Life Therapists include the entire family and promote play and interaction with siblings.
Camp Quality currently funds Child Life Therapists in oncology paediatric wards in NSW and VIC.
With so many proven benefits from the support of Child Life Therapists for children and families living with cancer, Camp Quality believe this is important work.
Our longer term goal is to fund further Child Life Therapist positions in oncology units across Australia.