Categorised | Family

Who would care for your kids if you had cancer?

A small NFP with a big heart provides unique service to parents in need

An estimated 437,202 Australians have a medically diagnosed neoplasm, about 89 per cent of which are malignant (cancer)(i). At current incidence rates, one in three men and one in four women in Australia will develop cancer by the age of 75, a majority of whom will have children(ii).

Caring For Kids During Cancer is a unique welfare service in Australia, providing free child care to families when a parent is undergoing active cancer treatment and has little or no family or community support. This much needed service is currently under threat of ceasing its program due to drastic funding shortages.

“There are currently more than 50 families with pre-school and primary school-aged children in the Sydney region who require immediate access to the Caring For Kids During Cancer service but sadly, without the necessary funding, we are unable to meet this urgent need,” says 24 year old Tania Menzies, Founder of Caring For Kids During Cancer and Director of Jelli Beanz.

In 2007, Menzies had successfully established Jelli Beanz, a busy babysitting and nanny service, and was looking to expand into Victoria when her business partner and Godmother was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer. While accompanying her Godmother to the hospital for her cancer treatment, Menzies saw firsthand the need for parents undergoing cancer treatment to have access to compassionate child care services.

“An oncology unit is no place for children,” says Menzies.

“My Godmother inspired and encouraged me to develop a service which would provide practical and emotional assistance for parents and their children who were under immense pressure during this difficult time,” continues Menzies.

Caring For Kids During Cancer provides fully trained, qualified childcare workers to care for children while their parents visit hospital to receive active treatment for cancer as well as post-treatment when the parent needs time to recover from the side effects of the treatment.

To be eligible for the service, parents must be assessed by a social worker to determine that the parent has no or limited family and community support to care for the children while they undergo treatment.

Caring For Kids During Cancer is currently looking for corporate funding and individual donations in order to continue providing this vital welfare service to the community and families of metropolitan Sydney.

What are you waiting for? For more information or to make a donation please visit www.jellibeanz.com.au or call 1300 799 860.

i 2007-08 National Health Survey
ii Australian Government – Cancer Australia

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