One of BCF’s goals is to support the families of the children going through treatment to cope more easily during the traumatic period. The treatment of childhood cancer does not only affect the sick child but the entire family network as well that includes siblings and the extended family of the child. This means that the family too needs support.
At Bless a Child Foundation, the family of the child undergoing treatment is given on-site psychosocial support and counselling. This is achieved through the services of a professional counselor and interaction with families whose children have survived the ordeal of childhood cancer under the Parent Support program.
The care-givers also hold weekly homogenous meetings where they discuss various issues affecting them as they look after their children. The meetings help them to talk about their fears and challenges and receive support from different professionals who attend the meetings. They are encouraged to diligently keep their hospital appointments and to also look beyond the present challenges of the disease.
During the treatment cycles of the children, many care-givers are not able to keep their jobs or continue with the business they were running previously as they need to devote their full time to looking after the sick child. BCF ensures that these parents are trained and equipped with skills like making candles, baking, making re-usable sanitary pads, making paper, urban farming, and juice production and preservation, among many other skills.
This ensures that when they go back to their villages, they are able to use the skills acquired to make a living that will help in taking care of the family.