Camp Quality’s guide to help parents talk to kids about a cancer diagnosis

Camp Quality has expanded their Kids’ Guide to Cancer with the aim of improving health outcomes for families, including those from multicultural communities.

Receiving a cancer diagnosis is difficult for any family. It can be hard to know what to say to your kids, how to describe the disease, and how to answer the curly questions.

But when language is a barrier, the challenges are intensified, especially when it comes to finding and understanding information.

This is where Camp Quality’s Kids’ Guide to Cancer can be really helpful.

Already a go-to resource for families going through a cancer diagnosis, the Kids’ Guide to Cancer app is now available online and in four new languages: Arabic, Cantonese, Mandarin and Hindi – four of the most common languages spoken in Australia, other than English.

What is the Kids’ Guide to Cancer?

Kids’ Guide to Cancer is a free app and website resource that helps parents, grandparents and carers explain cancer and treatments to children with age-appropriate information and easy to understand graphics and videos.

Aimed at informing children up to 15 years, the accessible resource is suitable to explore with kids, and makes it easy to find out information about:

  • What cancer is
  • Different types of cancer
  • Medicines and hospitals involved in treatment
  • People who help, including medical professionals and people in your own community.

There are also tips for kids on what they can do to help their mum, dad or carer who is going through cancer, and personal stories from other kids to help them feel less alone.

Improving health outcomes

Importantly, the expansion of the resource to include new language translations provides multicultural children and families who are facing cancer with access to crucial health information in their own language.

It’s a step in the right direction to help improve poor health outcomes for multicultural communities facing a cancer diagnosis.

Research published in Support Care Cancer found that multicultural families affected by cancer often have poorer health outcomes due to a lack of access to cancer-related information in their own language.

This is concerning, given that approximately 22% of all cancer diagnoses in Victoria are in people who were born in non-English speaking countries.

And, according to Dr Luciano Dalla-Pozza, Director of The Cancer Centre for Children at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, the majority of children and adolescents treated for cancer at the Hospital are from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Camp Quality supports one in three children diagnosed with cancer. However, their goal is to help them all, says Camp Quality CEO, Deborah Thomas.

“We know that for children and families who speak another language, it’s a particularly frightening time because they are often unable to access cancer information in their language that is credible, age-appropriate and educational.”

“We are very proud that our award-winning Kids’ Guide to Cancer app and website addresses this gap and will no doubt become the go to, accessible source of credible and trusted information for families facing cancer.”

Camp Quality aims to improve health outcomes for families with a cancer diagnosis by making information more accessible. Find out more.

Also see: Parenting with Mesothelioma: Talking to My Children About My Diagnosis