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Child With Cancer


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just heard that a child has been diagnosed with bone cancer within the group and they will not be returning. This is our second case in a year the other child having cancer in their kidneys. As is expected the family are really struggling and we are all in shock. Can anyone give us advice on what we can do? Should the other parents be informed - I have had them asking why the child has been off and just said that he was unwell - this was at the mothers request - she said 'until I know what we are dealing with'. The other family were very open and informed everyone prior to their return in September. I have tried contacting the family but have been unable to reach them. I know everyone would want to support them and I don't want the family thinking we don't care. Would it be better coming from us than the gossiping at the gate?

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This is always a difficult situation to be in, But I would agree with Hali, that you cannot inform the other parents, without the wishes of the family. Every family needs to able to deal with this in their own way and perhaps they are not yet ready to inform people at large. You could show your care and concern by perhaps dropping them a letter asking how things are and if there is anythings you can do, for example does the child have any pictures paintings or belongings at the setting that you could ask if they would like?

Alternatively is there another family within your setting that are close friends of the family concerned who could pass on your best wishes?

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as said you really need parents of child to confirm what you should say to other parents. I would do as Mundia suggested and write note or letter offering support, anything you can do to help, etc and at same time asking about how you are to deal with other parents. if it does get out and around school you will know you have done all you can and respected parents wishes and kept confidentiality of family.

 

Inge

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I agree with all the above, but would also add that they are probably in shock at the thought of their beloved child's illness, trying to come to terms with all it means.I would certainly send them a card/letter from the staff team, with your good wishes, but how about also sending a favourite small game or puzzle for the child to use whn he is in hospital?Or hat about cards/pictures from the other children, you can say, i think that x is going to be away for a while and this is to let him know you miss/or are thinking about him?? He must also be puzzled as to what is going on and will miss you and his friends too.How about contact through a trusted friend, or the family's health visitor?? I think you're right though to keep the contact going,this family will need all the support they can get.Will they need babysitting rotas for other children (if they have them?), can someone offer to cook meals to put in their freezer for hectic days ahead, when they don't feel like cooking?i hope all goes well for them

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thank you for your comments. I have now managed to talk to the family, they have moved from 'shock' stage to 'coping' at present. They have said I can let the class know which I will do after the holidays. It was good having the forum to be able to 'talk' to. It gets a bit lonely the management side of things and I found this outlet helped me. Thank you again

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Is there something positive or constructive you could do as a group? We had a child who went through major surgery and nearly died, at a time when the family was crumbling anyway. The children at Nursery made lots of fab things which they kept sending over a period of time so that the family knew we were thinking of them lots. How about some sort of fundraising - maybe not immediately but perhaps for a specific charity or hospital.........

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