Beads of Courage Program Helps Pediatric Cancer Patients Through Cancer Journey

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Thanks to generous funding from Carly’s Club, RPCI offers the Beads of Courage® program to active pediatric cancer patients being treated at the hospital. Beads of Courage® is designed to honor the journeys that children take when they are diagnosed with cancer.

Through the program, children tell their cancer stories using colorful beads as meaningful symbols of courage. Each bead a child earns commemorates a milestone that they have achieved along their unique treatment path (i.e. a round of chemotherapy is represented with a white bead; an inpatient admission to the hospital is represented with a yellow bead). Beads of Courage PartyPediatric patients first receive a string with beads that spell out their first name. Then, colorful beads that visually represent the many challenges each patient overcomes along their treatment journeys are added to the string creating a “journal” that tells their unique stories of courage. The strands are a tangible representation of the strength and bravery each patient exemplified during past treatment challenges, often giving them more strength to face the challenges that remain ahead of them. 

The implementation of the program is the culmination of the hard work and dedication of an impassioned overnight nurse and all those who she has inspired with her description of the program since she learned about it last summer. “This is something I saw in a magazine. It was just a little, one-page article, and I contacted them,” Lorene Barulich, RN, explains. “I’m a night nurse and I usually jazz up the kids’ IV bags with stickers. But, that was something that got thrown away. So to see that there’s something tangible for them...I was so excited to bring this here.”

Clarence Girl Scouts Troop Gets Creative to Support Young Cancer Patients by Sewing Beads of Courage bags. Read more...