Helping Kids and Adolescents Cope With a Cancer Diagnosis
Children can have many different reactions when they learn that they or someone they love has been diagnosed with cancer. They may be afraid or confused, or feel guilty or angry and we encourage our clients to know that these feelings are never wrong. CancerCare for Kids provides free, professional support services for parents, children and adolescents affected by cancer, as well as information about helping children understand cancer and additional resources. All of our services are provided by oncology social workers who specialize in working with children and adolescents.
When there is a cancer diagnosis in the family, it’s important to talk to children and adolescents and provide them with an outlet to express themselves. “The information that you would give a five-year-old is very different from what you would share with a 10 or a 15-year-old,” says CancerCare’s Children and AYA Program Director Angelique Caba, LCSW. “That being said, children are a lot smarter than we give them credit for. They’re going to pick up on things so minute, that we may think they’re insignificant.”
To help guide parents in these difficult conversations, CancerCare for Kids offers free podcasts, Connect booklets and fact sheets. These resources are tailored to specific situations that surround a cancer diagnosis, whether it’s talking to children about a cancer diagnosis in the family, supporting a child who has cancer, or helping children who have lost a loved one.
CancerCare for Kids also offers one-on-one counseling to children and families in-person at our New York Office. CancerCare also offers counseling to parents nationwide over the phone and is able to consult with healthcare and school professionals. In addition, the following online and face-to-face support groups for children and adolescents are currently open for enrollment:
- Teens With Cancer Support Group (Online)
- Teens Who Have a Loved One With Cancer Support Group (Online)
- Comfort Circle: Children’s Loss of a Loved One (New York City)
To learn more about the various services that CancerCare for Kids offers, visit our online portal.