Prescribe Joy to Seriously Ill Kids and Teens

by Children's Cancer Association
Vetted

Christopher was a sweet bundle of energy who loved animals and playing musical instruments. CCA first came into his life after he was diagnosed with Stage IV Neuroblastoma at just 18 months old. He was matched with a Chemo Pal mentor who brought fun and friendship during treatment, and enjoyed visits from CCA’s MyMusicRx team. Christopher battled hard for a year and a half before entering hospice care. Wanting to fill Christopher’s final days with joy, his parents asked CCA for a special party with family and friends, and some of his favorite things – frogs and reptiles! CCA's Link program reached out to the Beaverton Bakery, who provided an incredible frog cake, and to House of Reptiles, who brought along a variety of slimy, scaly guests that made Christopher laugh and smile with joy.

CCA’s Link program is a community network of caring people and organizations that unites local families facing serious pediatric illness with connections to local and national resources. We help families with specific, essential needs, from providing a child with a new pair of eyeglasses to granting the wish of a child with a terminal illness. Other CCA programs that prescribe joy to families with seriously ill children and teens include:

  • Chemo Pal® Mentor Program, an award-winning program that matches children and teens with trained adult mentors who provide friendship, diversion, and fun to kids undergoing treatment.
  • MyMusicRx®, a one-of-a-kind music medicine program that lets “kids prescribe” the music experience that feels right to them. The in-hospital program includes bedside sing-a-longs led by trained music specialists, instrument lending from customized mobile music carts, concerts, and iPad and headphone check-outs. The online extension, MyMusicRx.org, is the only digital music program of its kind; it enables seriously ill kids to play and download free music games, explore digital instruments and watch exclusive video song prescriptions from their favorite artists – whenever and wherever, 24/7.
  • The Alexandra Ellis Caring Cabin™, a secluded home along the Pacific Coast nestled in 24 acres of surrounding woods with plentiful wildlife and a serene lake, provides an essential health connection with nature and an extraordinary place for families to relax and create once-in-a-lifetime memories.

Links:

Fynn, diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia a month before his fourth birthday, is now six years old and in the maintenance phase of treatment. He loves animals, especially dinosaurs and sharks, and he is obsessed with transformers. Fynn and his family recently had a special weekend away at the Alexandra Ellis Caring Cabin™ and shared some of their experience in a journal entry at the cabin.

“We just wanted to say a huge thank you for our wonderful weekend at the Caring Cabin! What an amazing place! We loved placing Fynn's stone together as a family. We found the stone of our Chemo Pal's previous buddy, Grant. Fynn knew that they both shared Ed, Chemo Pal to both the boys, and Fynn decided their stones should go together.”

More than 40 family members like Fynn’s visit CCA’s luxurious Caring Cabin hideaway in a typical month. This free adventure helps restore the energy and hope kids and their families need to battle their illness over the long haul. CCA understands that play can sometimes be the thing that’s needed most.

The health benefits of nature are scientifically proven to decrease anxiety, stress, and depression, and have been noted to boost the immune system to fight cancer. For pediatric patients, the Caring Cabin, nestled in 24 acres of surrounding woods with plentiful wildlife and a serene lake, provides an essential health connection with nature and healing.

Other CCA programs that prescribe joy to families with seriously ill children and teens include:

  • Link, a community network of caring people and organizations that provides wishes and unites local families with essential needs and connections to resources.
  • Chemo Pal Mentor® Program, an award-winning program that matches children and teens with trained adult mentors
  • MyMusicRx®, a one-of-a-kind music medicine program that lets “kids prescribe” the music experience that feels right to them. The in-hospital program, led by MyMusicRx Specialists, includes bedside music and provides access to CCA’s digital music medicine program, MyMusicRx.org, which enables kids to play free music games, explore digital instruments and watch exclusive video song prescriptions from their favorite artists – whenever and wherever, 24/7

Links:

Last February, nine-year-old Jayden was in a terrible car accident in which her mother and twin sister were killed. She was facing a long hospital stay and the hospital staff thought a room makeover might bring this little girl a bit of cheer in the midst of such a difficult time. CCA sprang into action, first talking to Jayden to see what she liked, then transforming her room with a new comforter, One Direction posters, and pictures of her family. The “before” and “after” was remarkable, and so was little Jayden’s reaction when she saw it.

CCA’s Link program is a community network of caring people and organizations that unites local families facing serious pediatric illness with connections to local and national resources. The program helps families with specific, essential needs, from providing a child with a new pair of eyeglasses to granting the wish of a child with a terminal illness. Other CCA programs that prescribe joy to families with seriously ill children and teens include:

  • Chemo Pal Mentor® Program, an award-winning program that matches children and teens with trained adult mentors who provide friendship, diversion, and fun to kids undergoing treatment.
  • MyMusicRx, a one-of-a-kind music medicine program that lets “kids prescribe” the music experience that feels right to them. The in-hospital program includes bedside sing-a-longs led by trained music specialists, instrument lending from customized mobile music carts, concerts, and iPad and headphone check-outs. The online extension, MyMusicRx.org, is the only digital music program of its kind; it enables seriously ill kids to play and download free music games, explore digital instruments and watch exclusive video song prescriptions from their favorite artists – whenever and wherever, 24/7.
  • The Alexandra Ellis Caring Cabin™, a secluded home along the Pacific Coast, nestled in 24 acres of surrounding woods with plentiful wildlife and a serene lake, provides an essential health connection with nature and an extraordinary place for families to relax and create once-in-a-lifetime memories.

Links:

Aaliyah appears to be your average starry-eyed seven year old. She loves to make friendship bracelets, dance to her Wii, and hang out with her older sisters. But this little girl has experienced things that most kids won’t in a lifetime. She’s endured six tough rounds of chemo, keeping her in the hospital for nearly a year battling Anaplastic ependymoma, a brain tumor in the brain stem.

Aaliyah’s family hasn’t been able to do a lot of the things other families can do. So, a getaway to CCA’s Caring Cabin was just the thing they needed most – an opportunity to breathe the fresh coastal air, walk through the woods, eat S’mores, and create special memories together with aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Aaliyah’s mom, Yesenia shared, “Economically, you cannot do a lot of things other families can do. We are really excited that we get to do this, we are really thankful for the people who made it possible too.”

“Ignite your light and let it shine” are lyrics from Aaliyah’s favorite Katy Perry song. And shine she did during her adventure vacation at the Caring Cabin.

More than 40 family members like Raquel’s visit CCA’s luxurious Caring Cabin hideaway in a typical month. This free adventure helps restore the energy and hope kids need to battle their illness over the long haul. CCA understands that play can sometimes be the thing that’s needed most.

The health benefits of nature are scientifically proven to decrease anxiety, stress, and depression, and have been noted to boost the immune system to fight cancer. For pediatric patients, the Caring Cabin, nestled in 24 acres of surrounding woods with plentiful wildlife and a serene lake, provides an essential health connection with nature and healing.

Other CCA programs that prescribe joy to families with seriously ill children and teens include:

  • Link, a community network of caring people and organizations that provides wishes and unites local families with essential needs and connections to resources.
  • Chemo Pal Mentor® Program, an award-winning program that matches children and teens with trained adult mentors
  • MyMusicRx®, a one-of-a-kind music medicine program that lets “kids prescribe” the music experience that feels right to them. The in-hospital program, led by MyMusicRx Specialists, provides access to CCA’s digital music medicine program, MyMusicRx.org, which enables kids to play free music games, explore digital instruments and watch exclusive video song prescriptions from their favorite artists – whenever and wherever, 24/7.

Cassie is a spunky redhead who loves arts and crafts, and since December 2010, she has been battling Neuroblastoma. When Cassie’s family home had a leaky roof, CCA’s Link program connected them with three companies who joined forces to replace the family’s roof, alleviating her parents’ worries about soggy ceilings and dangerous mold.

CCA’s Link program is a community network of caring people and organizations that unites local families facing serious pediatric illness with connections to local and national resources. We help families with specific, essential needs, from providing a child with a new pair of eyeglasses to granting the wish of a child with a terminal illness. Other CCA programs that prescribe joy to families with seriously ill children and teens include:

  • Chemo Pal Mentor® Program, an award-winning program that matches children and teens with trained adult mentors who provide friendship, diversion, and fun to kids undergoing treatment.
  • MyMusicRx®, a one-of-a-kind music medicine program that lets “kids prescribe” the music experience that feels right to them. The in-hospital program includes bedside sing-a-longs led by trained music specialists, instrument lending from customized mobile music carts, concerts, and iPad and headphone check-outs. The online extension, MyMusicRx.org, is the only digital music program of its kind; it enables seriously ill kids to play and download free music games, explore digital instruments and watch exclusive video song prescriptions from their favorite artists – whenever and wherever, 24/7.
  • The Alexandra Ellis Caring Cabin™, a secluded home along the Pacific Coast, nestled in 24 acres of surrounding woods with plentiful wildlife and a serene lake, provides an essential health connection with nature and an extraordinary place for families to relax and create once-in-a-lifetime memories.
 

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Organization Information

Children's Cancer Association

Location: Portland, Oregon - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.joyrx.org/​
Project Leader:
Children's Cancer Association
Portland, OR United States
$263,462 raised of $500,000 goal
 
 
1,520 donations
$236,538 to go
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