Kesem Positively Impacting Cancer Families and Communities
Navigating a patient’s cancer is a team effort. Medically, patients are supported through professional staff and providers to gain the best care for their diagnosis. What happens outside of the clinic is just as an important factor to the cancer journey, particularly for families with young children. Kesem is a resource for families with children ages 6-18 that have (or had) a parent diagnosed with cancer.
Kesem is a nationwide organization driven by passionate college student leaders that support children through and beyond a parent’s cancer. The organization hosts summer-programming called Camp Kesem every year that includes day-camps, as well as sleep-away camps. Kesem focuses on being mindful and discrete to provide inclusive programming and being aware of potential financial barriers families may be experiencing. They work to offer innovative, fun-filled programs that foster a lasting community. Based on surveys provided by participating parents, Kesem emphasizes the value and importance for their children to know that they have friends who understand what it’s like to have a parent with (or who had) cancer.
Additionally, the organization provides a year-round program called “Kesem by Your Side”, which allows families to request additional support from the organization when they need it. Many of these requests come in when parents enter hospice. Kesem’s college student leaders support the child(ren) during this difficult part of the cancer journey. The strength from the Kesem community provides emotional benefit in allowing children an encouraging safe space to express, process and heal in a community of their peers.
Kesem provides a significant benefit and is a wonderful resource for the families with children within the larger cancer community.
Learn more at https://www.campkesem.org/