Here To Serve Provides Assistance to Families Caring for a Child or a Child’s Parent With Cancer

Yana Bostongirl

Four-year-old Yan Yan is losing his battle with cancer. This little boy and his parents, Paul and Abby, have fought valiantly to save his life, but cancer refuses to release its grip. At present, Yan Yan's family is sitting vigil as the time draws near for their beloved son to leave his earthly home for his final journey to heaven.

A cancer diagnosis is devastating at any age, even more so in the case of a four-year-old child. Things can quickly become overwhelming, from hospital visits to providing care and managing finances. Although friends and family often offer their help and provide a support system, that does not always meet the family's needs for the duration of the treatment. Cancer journeys can be long and arduous, and the once dedicated helpers often move on, sometimes thinking the family is able to manage their new normal after a while. That is often not true. It is farther along in the journey that things get really tough. You're drained of energy, in need of respite, finances get worse, and the list goes on.

What if there is an organization that is able to provide wraparound services to meet the daily living needs of young families navigating cancer throughout the journey?

Katie Quintas founded Here to Serve, a nonprofit organization based in California, from her experience dealing with the cancer diagnoses of both her husband (Leukemia) and son (Stage 4 Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma): "I conceived of Here to Serve to organize and bring together, not only the community of volunteers who wish to help but also the many support services that often go untapped because you either are not aware of them or do not have the energy to seek them out."

Some of the services Here to Serve offers childhood cancer families include the following:

· Mobilize people and resources to meet the daily living requirements of families with children battling cancer for the entirety of their cancer treatment, which for some can mean years.

· Build online communities of support called Care Communities that provide a network of services and financial assistance for families caring for their child or spouse battling cancer.

· Provide hard-to-find resources at the start and throughout treatment as needs arise.

If you would like to know more about Here to Seve and a comprehensive list of services they provide or are interested in supporting them, you can do so by visiting their website.

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Writer @ Medium

Boston, MA

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