The Lennox Children’s Cancer Fund ‘We’ve Got Your Back Pack’ campaign was successfully launched in late 2021. The project enables thoughtful care packages to be given to children in the hospital experiencing the trauma of being newly diagnosed with cancer.
Thanks to a generous donation from the Essex Freemasons, the charity has secured funding to provide these backpacks free of charge to 250 families across six significant hospitals. Now the charity would like to expand the project, with the ultimate goal to provide these backpacks to all 150 children diagnosed with childhood cancer each month across the UK.
Imagine you have just received the devastating news that your child has been diagnosed with cancer. What often follows is a traumatic and immediate transfer to a major hospital to begin urgent treatment, with no opportunity to gather your thoughts, composure or personal belongings from home first.
Now to imagine being your child in that situation, surrounded by panic, scary noises and confusing words and wishing for nothing else but to be comforted and to know they are not alone. This distressing and unforeseen diagnosis happens to over 150 children every month across the UK.
This precise moment in any family’s childhood cancer journey inspired Lennox Children’s Cancer Fund to launch their ‘We’ve Got Your Back Pack’ campaign. This project has involved the production of a unique, child-friendly care package, which has been thoughtfully designed following feedback from the families the charity already works with, as well as the approval of the oncology staff who will be distributing them.
The backpacks are full of comforting components such as fluffy socks, a cuddly toy and a blanket, and practical items such as a phone charger, travel mug and toiletries for the child and parent. The pack also includes headphones and colouring books to help entertain and distract the child during the many procedures they will have to face during their hospital stay.
Parents of newly diagnosed children will also find lots of crucial information within the backpack, signposting them to the other support services the charity provides, including care grants, emotional support and respite holidays.
Vicky Nash, family support officer for the Lennox Children’s Cancer Fund, commented: ‘When children are diagnosed with cancer, they are often immediately whisked from their local hospital to their nearest Principal Treatment Centre.’
‘This happens so quickly that they and the parents are unprepared for what happens next, which means they have understandably failed to bring with them essentials such as toothpaste and toiletries and much more.’
‘In many cases, the children and parents will be in hospital for a long time, and with Covid restrictions, there is little or no access to community areas making it more mentally challenging for young people and their families. Our ‘We have you back’ packs are designed to help overcome those problems – ensuring that the child patients and their parents have the essentials they need and something to do to beat the boredom.’
Following the successful launch of the new project in late 2021, the charity has already secured funding from the Essex Freemasons to provide their child-friendly care packages free of charge to six significant hospitals across Essex.
The Essex Freemasons‘ generous donation ensures that for the next two years, every child who is newly diagnosed with cancer in Essex will now receive a ‘We’ve Got Your Back’ Pack from Lennox Children’s Cancer Fund. Like Isaac, children are currently fighting childhood cancer at home in Colchester.
Izaac’s mother, Roxanne, described the moment she received the backpack last month:’ We received the Lennox Backpack, and it was terrific. So very thoughtful for my child, as well as us parents. The backpack comes everywhere with us, especially the blanket.’
The charity aims to expand the project; to ensure that every one of the 150 children a month who are diagnosed with cancer across the UK can receive one of their thoughtfully designed care packages. This nationwide impact isn’t possible, however, without your support.
- Are you able to help a family who has just received a devastating and life-changing childhood cancer diagnosis?
- Could you have their back by donating or fundraising towards Lennox’s ‘We’ve Got Your Back’ Pack project?
- Is your business or organisation in a position to sponsor pack delivery to your local hospitals?