Every family has different needs, while many have similar needs.
The Way It Works…
Claire’s Army helps families battling childhood cancer by partnering with support professionals at Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center:
- Child Life specialists are trained professionals with experience in helping children and their families overcome a broad range of challenging experiences, particularly those related to healthcare and hospitalization. Claire’s Army communicates with these specialists to help meet families’ needs as they arise through the treatment process. Examples of this could be identifying and fulfilling educational, social and recreational needs of the child in treatment as well as the child’s siblings.
- Social Workers interview the parents to gain a comprehensive understanding of their social and economic standing, such as: parents’ current employment status, available health insurance, local extended family support and proximity of the home to the hospital. This information helps the social worker understand the specific, potential issues that can and will arise during the sick child’s treatment. The social worker notifies Claire’s Army of any needs that fall into our organization’s capabilities.
Disclaimer: Claire’s Army does not accept direct requests for assistance. In an effort to be good stewards of the resources our donors have entrusted to us, Claire’s Army works through hospital oncology social workers and affiliated professionals, who are in the best position to determine eligibility and need on a case by case basis. At this time, Claire’s Army is primarily focused on pediatric cancer families receiving treatment at the St. Jude Affiliate Clinic at Novant Health Hemby’s Children Hospital, where Claire was treated.
Basic Services We Provide
Claire Package – Every new family facing a childhood cancer diagnosis at Novant Health Presbyterian Medical Center will receive a Claire Package to make their hospital stay more comfortable. This useful utility tote will contain essentials such as towels, a bath mat, room disinfectant, plastic utensils, dishwashing liquid, dryer sheets, a journal, etc. Each of these baskets costs about $150 to prepare.
Army Meal Plan – The “Army Meal Plan” is a multifaceted plan focused on removing stress associated with purchasing groceries and planning and preparing meals for the family. One way Claire’s Army will alleviate this burden is by collecting donated gift cards from local restaurants and allowing families to make their own meal choices while eliminating the added expense. We also develop partnerships with local restaurants that allow families the flexibility and freedom to order take-out or even leave the hospital for a meal break at no added expense. The third way the Army Meal Plan works is through scheduled delivery of meals when a family is unable to leave the hospital or needs a meal delivered to the patient’s home. Claire’s Army volunteers will organize and facilitate the process for meal pick-up, communication with the family and delivery to the hospital or home.
Grocery/Pharmacy Initiative – The Grocery/Pharmacy initiative provides gift cards that can be redeemed at grocery stores with pharmacies and alleviate families’ expenses for food and medicine. Many chemotherapy medicines affect a child’s taste, causing a constant change in food preferences. It’s vital to the patient’s health to maintain a regular intake of calories, and this changing appetite can make food very expensive during the treatment process. While treatment medicine is often administered at the hospital or outpatient clinic, families must purchase other prescriptions to fight nausea, infections, anxiety and other symptoms. Claire’s Army will meet this need through gift card donations and purchasing gift cards from our fundraising contributions.
The Holiday Campaign – The holidays can be a difficult and frustrating time for families who have little time and money to focus on secondary things such as decorating and even buying gifts for the holidays. The Holiday Campaign will aim to allow families to experience the magic of the holidays wherever they might be – in the hospital or at home. With funds from Claire’s Army, we will purchase and deliver Christmas trees to patients’ homes, provide decorations for the home and/or hospital room, and offer our volunteers’ time to help decorate, allowing the caregivers to continue focusing their time on the child in treatment.
As you can see it takes an Army. Join us and with your support we will be the difference these families need to focus on what’s most important…the battle.
SERVE FAMILIES. LOVE KIDS. FIGHT CANCER.
P. O. Box 78571
Charlotte, NC 28271