Posts Tagged ‘Cancer’

11-Year-Old Writes Bucket List for her Terminally ill Mother

May 30, 2013



As part of the standardised testing this year, students were asked to nominate a person for a hypothetical “Hero Prize” and give reasons for their selection. 50% of the students at my school nominated their mother (interestingly, none nominated their father). The impact a mother has on a child is unquantifiable and the heroism many mothers face at a time when finding the right work/home balance is as tricky as ever, should not go unnoticed.

The bucket list compiled by a an 11-year-old, charting the list of activities she would like to do with her mother while she is still well enough, strikes at the heart of how unimaginably hard it would be for a child to lose a parent, especially a mother.


To donate to the fund, visit Kate’s Bucket List on Facebook.

Click on the link to read Tips For Parents of Kids Who “Hate School”

Children with Cancer are Being Bullied by Classmates: Study

December 4, 2012


I just can’t believe it! There is scarcely anything more tragic than a young child suffering with cancer. How anyone can see this as an opportunity to bully astounds me. What kind of society are we if the results of this study is accurate?

Children with cancer are being bullied by their classmates, losing friends and risk falling behind at school, research suggests.

The illness can significantly disrupt a child’s education as well as their ability to make and keep friends, according to a report by a UK children’s cancer charity.

The CLIC Sargent study reveals youngsters with the disease have been bullied by their classmates because they have lost their hair or gained weight – with some even being told they are going to die.

The report, based on a survey and interviews with children with cancer and parents, looked at the impact of the disease on children in primary education.

More than a third (35 per cent) of parents said their child had been bullied or teased when they returned to school because of their cancer diagnosis, or the effects of treatment, such as losing their hair or gaining weight due to steroids.

One parent told researchers that some of their son’s classmates tried to steal his hat and another said that their daughter was picked on because she had lost her hair and gained weight.

Another parent said: ‘James used to have friends at school but the ones closest to him started to be really cruel and nasty to him when he returned after his main cancer treatment.

‘There were occasions when older kids would laugh at him and tell him he was going to die.’

The report, published to mark Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in the UK, found that almost half of parents (47 per cent) said their child had grown apart from their friends.

The same proportion said their child’s school did not help maintain contact with classmates and friends while their son or daughter was off.

About 15 per cent of parents said their child felt different from their classmates and 13 per cent said their youngster felt isolated and excluded.

The study also reveals concerns about the level of education children receive while receiving treatment, and the help they get when they return to school.

About 70 per cent of parents said their child had some form of education when they were off school but just a third (36 per cent) said the primary school kept in regular contact with the hospital school.

The majority of families said they did not feel they were kept well-informed about their child’s education when their youngster was being taught in hospital.

Of all the stories I have covered on this blog, this one has upset me the most. What are schools doing to help with the social challenges that kids with cancer evidently face?

Surely any school worth their salt will invest a considerable amount of time into students with cancer, ensuring that they are coping with the added stresses and burdens. This would certainly include educating the other students and observing social interactions.


Click on the link to read Humiliation Solves Nothing (Video)

Click on the link to read What Principal Would Ever Approve of this Kind of Bullying?

Click on the link to read Bullies Should Not Be Treated Like Students With Incorrect Uniform

Click on the link to read Social Media: A Playground for Bullies

Click on the link to read Charity Pays for Teen’s Plastic Surgery to Help Stop Bullying


The Rise of the Insensitive School

September 25, 2012

Who in their right mind would stop students from paying tribute to a the memory of a treasured friend and classmate?

Friends of a 14-year-old boy who died after a long battle with cancer are being sent home from school for refusing to remove wristbands worn in his memory.

Jordan Cobby, from Nuneaton, was diagnosed with a tumour behind his eye in 2008 and died aged 14 last March

Tribute wristbands in memory of Jordan were sold at his school, the Nuneaton Academy, following his death, with all proceeds donated to the Teenage Cancer Trust charity.

Friends of the teenager bought the bands and have worn them ever since, but now the school has banned pupils from wearing them, saying they are not part of the uniform, his mother Joanne Meuse said.

One pupil, a close friend of Jordan’s, has even been sent home for refusing to remove the wristband.

Inspiring Kids who Look After a Sick Parent

July 29, 2012

At a time when kids are accused of being ungrateful and selfish it is heartening to be reminded of cases where young children sacrifice their own needs to look after a sick parent:

AT an age when most boys are juggling sports with homework, 14-year-old Lachlan Bailey-Yates spends his spare time caring for his sick mum.

Lachlan’s story is one of inspiration.

His mother was diagnosed when he was just 13 and starting his first year of high school.

“I am a single mother,” Ms Bailey-Yates said.

“Lachlan and I are very close. Telling him I had a very serious illness was the hardest thing I have done,” she said.

The 46-year-old was diagnosed last August and had a double mastectomy to remove a large tumour under her breast.

“I would come home from hospital to a beautiful dinner of chicken nuggets and mashed potato,” she laughed.

“I just think, ‘How lucky am I?’ “

She is still recovering from the disease and needs to travel to Newcastle’s Mater Hospital every fortnight.

“I have had to rely on friends and people in the community to help out,” she said.

“At Christmas Lachlan told me he didn’t want any presents. He just wanted to be with me. What a beautiful thing for a child to say.”

Lachlan said caring for his mum comes naturally.

“I help out because I love my mum and I want to make things a bit easier for her,” he said simply.

Click on the link to read The Perfect Example of Courage and Self-Respect

Click on the link to read Woman Re-Mortagages Her House To Feed School Kids

Click on the link to read Insensitive ‘Parent Bashers’ Take Aim at Grieving Colorado Parents

The Bid to Make Barbie Bald

January 13, 2012

I am not a big fan of Barbie. However, I think the initiative to get Mattel to include a cancer suffering “Bald Barbie” has plenty of merit:

Most kids in America recognize Barbie immediately.

She’s tall, she’s thin, and she’s…bald?

Rebecca Sypin is one of the people behind this Facebook campaign urging Mattel to create a bald Barbie, one she says children battling cancer and other diseases that cause hair loss can relate to.

“When you go to the supermarket, sometimes you have little kids who’ve never seen it before, staring, and I think it would make it much more mainstream and more normal for kids to see that,” said Sypin.

Sypin knows about children and cancer all too well. Her daughter, Kin Inich, is battling leukemia.

“Everybody else has hair, even a boy has hair and you don’t. So it would make you feel like you’re Barbie, you would be the glamorous girl with the big lifestyle and everything now,” said Kin.

The Beautiful and Bald Barbie Facebook page has been up and running for less than a month, and already has more than 65,000 friends.

But despite that support, Sypin says the bald Barbie idea has gotten a cool reception from Mattel, saying that the company has told her they do not take unsolicited Barbie doll suggestions from outside sources.

A bald Barbie may still be a possibility though. Mattel released a written statement Thursday saying the company is honored that so many people are looking to Barbie as the face of such an important cause.

“We receive hundreds of passionate requests for various dolls to be added to our collection,” the statement reads. “We take all of them seriously and are constantly exploring new and different dolls to be added to our line.”

Let’s face it. The reason that Mattel seem less than enthusiastic about the idea, is that it would almost certainly make a loss. That, and the fact that the Barbie name is synonymous with looks and dimensions that lack realism and are deliberately out of proportion. A doll that humanises the Barbie name and presents her as flawed and vulnerable is not what they are setting out to do.

I will be watching closely to see whether or not Mattel has the conviction to bypass profits for this extremely noteworthy cause. If they don’t, it will only serve to reaffirm my current dislike of the product.

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