Wednesday, February 25, 2015 | Social Responsibility |
“Because every child has the right to learn, play and grow even while confined in the hospital” - Kythe Foundation
MicroSourcing volunteer leaders turned over P33,400 to Kythe Foundation at the National Children’s Hospital last February 21, Saturday. The donation was raised through a Valentine’s Fundraiser, Run for Someone Special. All proceeds benefitted Kythe’s Child Life Program, providing opportunities for play and learning to children with chronic illnesses.
The turnover meeting was held at National Children’s Hospital, a Kythe partner for 12 years. Kythe Executive Director Fatima Garcia-Lorenzo shared their program methods where quality care is grounded in play, education, and emotional support for kids and their families. Volunteers experienced this in part when they were paired with children at the pediatric ward for storytelling.
For volunteers and donors, we feature an account by volunteer Aice Galon about her encounter with a Kythe child. “It was a very heartfelt experience. Upon entering the ward, I sat beside a small boy with two dextrose units attached to his arms; sitting quite comfortably from a small stack of pillows and enjoying a game from his tablet. I greeted him and his mother and proudly showed the books and coloring materials I had under my arms, thinking this could invite the boy a little. He just threw a quick glance at me but put the tablet aside. I found out from his mother that his condition is a type of blood cancer that he got from birth. For the rest of his life, he will deal with his illness and undergo blood transfusion every three weeks. Leo was three years old. I tried asking him questions, smiling, reading him a story, offering him crayons, and even humming a song in hopes of being engaging. And then I realized I was trying too hard. I felt like I was intruding. I stepped into something wrong. I quietly assessed myself and figured that I am not appealing to this young boy because I shouldn’t be. I am out of my place because I have already assumed that he is lonely and helpless and I ultimately berated him because of his sickness at such a young age. Whereas for him, this is one of their normal days. This is just another blood transfusion session, another needle, another bed, another ward. This has been his life since he was born. This is his normal. He is normal. I am weird.
“His strength radiated so much that I was nearing tears after our second book. He was tired of entertaining me. He motioned to his mom to stack the pillows onto his back and began to close his eyes. His mother thanked me but I was too ashamed and apologetic to even smile back. I shook her hands, stood up, and composed myself before our group collected in the hallway. I knew I witnessed strength; resilience in normalcy and acceptance.”