Season’s Greetings from WE C Hope

Sunday December 10, 2017 | Abby White, WE C Hope CEO

Bright lights adorn trees, festive music cheers the soul, and gifts the world over bring joy to those we love.  This is a special time for celebration and reflection, for coming together as a community and sharing hope.

Happy Holidays - red silhouette of Santa on sleigh pulled by reindeer, flying past the moon. Set on gold background – reflecting colours of the WE C Hope logo.

The family of a child with cancer requires much care and support at any time of year, but the need for a helping hand often increases dramatically throughout the Holiday season. There is so much care giving to organize, hospital appointments still to keep and treatments to administer, children on holiday from school must be occupied, and there is an extra need for festive spirit in the home.

Yet many families are already stretched close to the breaking point, and the arrival of the Holidays do not suddenly make their troubles disappear.

If you are one of those family members, you will know that you must keep moving forward, but remember to take care of yourself too.  Set limits on your work time, and ask friends and/or family to help you out throughout the holidays.  Most often, people want to help, but don’t now what to do or how to offer their time to you.  Read more about seeking and accepting help.

If you are the friend of a family coping with their child’s cancer, give them a special Seasonal Greeting by offering to help out in some way.  They need to know you are there for them, and the offer of help is likely to be gratefully received.  Think about giving a gift that will be of practical value, provide support for the caregivers, or bring a little joy to the family together.  You can do many things for the family without spending a penny.  Here are some ideas, whether you live close by or far away:

  • Offer to provide meals, or order a healthy meal to be delivered.
  • Go grocery shopping or send gift vouchers for the family to spend.
  • Offer to clean the house, or pay for a cleaner to do housework
  • Offer lifts to the hospital or clinic – especially if the family has no car, or send gift cards for fuel, public transport or a car service.
  • Give the parents some down time with a spa visit, theatre tickets or or just a simple offer of babysitting for a few hours.

Keep in touch with telephone calls, cards, and visits.  However, be sure to ask the family how often they would like a call or visit- they may feel over-burdened by too much communication or a sense of obligation to entertain when they are already tired.

Keep an element of normalcy in your conversations – childhood cancer is a heavy load to bear, but families need to feel they are still part of the world beyond the illness, especially at this time of year.

Read more guidance and support ideas for friends and relatives

The real spirit of the Holiday Season is not to be found in a turkey dinner or brightly wrapped presents under a tree, but in the gift of our presence and dedication to helping those around us, in the sharing of hope, peace and friendship.  May we all give thanks for God’s rich blessings in our lives, and allow ourselves to be inspired and motivated into action by the miracles we celebrate in these precious days of light and love ♥

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