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Children Draw and Write Their Experiences with Cancer

Imagine being a young child and having your world turned upside down by the terrifying diagnosis of Cancer?

These children know what that horrifying reality is like. 6 extraordinary brave children describe their thoughts, feelings and experiences using art and writing.

It is all too often that children being treated for cancer will suffer from disease reoccurrences due to childhood cancer treatment being so underfunded that it is not as reliable as we need it to be. Every time a child relapses, their disease becomes harder to treat leading to them having to undergo more extensive and dangerous treatments than they did the previous time.

Zoey, age 9

Excerpted from Chronicling Childhood Cancer

Excerpted from Chronicling Childhood Cancer

Children going through cancer treatment have to be subjected to various tests and scans every so often to make sure that their treatment is working. Childhood cancer treatment is often planned out far beyond the child's situation. Meaning, the child's oncology team should already know ahead of time what they plan to do for treatment if the child suffers a relapse or their treatment stops working.

Shannon, age 12

Because of the lack of understanding about the mechanisms of childhood cancer there are few hospitals equipped to treating children with cancer using the specialized therapies that they need. Because of this, families and their children often have to travel long distances to get to hospitals that specialize in the types of treatment these kids need.

Mary, age 13

Teens who are already going through many hormonal changes often suffer from very serious mental health issues. Mental health in teens with cancer is something that needs to be understood and acknowledged.

Tamia, age 14

Excerpted from Chronicling Childhood Cancer

Excerpted from Chronicling Childhood Cancer

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Due to the changes in themselves and the adjustments that have to be made by their loved ones, teens with cancer are most susceptible to feelings of guilt and shame toward themselves for their illness even though it is not their fault.

Celeste, age 17

Cancer takes a horrendous toll on the whole life of the child who's affected. Kids with cancer deal with struggling health, fear, mental health, treatment related side effects, disease related symptoms, social isolation, missing out on important things such as school.

William, age 11

There needs to be more funding for childhood cancer

Childhood cancer receives less than 4% of Government issued funding. Split that 4% up into all the subcategories of different pediatric cancers, many specific pediatric cancer types receive none. Children with cancer and their experiences are the proof that childhood cancer is extremely underfunded. 1 in 5 children diagnosed with cancer will not survive and 90% of those who do will have to deal with late effects of their treatment, causing significant damage to their bodies.

How can you help?

Research projects for pediatric cancer treatment have to rely mostly on independent charities, such as St. Baldrick's, dedicated to supplying money they fundraise solely to pediatric cancer research.

You can help by fundraising and donating money to charities, such as Michael Mosier Defeat DIPG Foundation and St. Baldrick's Foundation, that provide funding exclusively towards pediatric cancer research, writing to congress and spreading the word about the reality of pediatric cancer is also beneficial.

This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2022 Mia Hensley

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