Beyond the Heartache
The Delaware Dreams foundation has had many heartwarming stories over the years but this is one that occurred in 1989 and initiated an annual tradition that continues today. Cancer can often be an isolating factor for both the patient and their families. In the case of one family in treatment at Nemours/AIduPont Hospital for Children a patient’s mother proposed, via a letter to the local newspaper, some kind of forum where families in treatment could come together in a casual setting outside of the hospital to communicate/commiserate with other patients and families facing similar challenges
This letter caught the eye of the Delaware Dreams leadership, a fairly new non-profit at the time, and a new partnership was born! In 1989 the first DE Dreams Pediatric Oncology Holiday party was held for families currently in treatment or recently out of treatment. The patient’s entire family was welcome, where they could mingle with the doctors and nurses who they had grown to know so well. Of course, the main event was when the man in red arrived – but even more exciting for the many smiling faces was to see the hospital’s chief oncologist handing out gifts as “Santa’s helper” to all the children in attendance. As that inspirational patient’s Mom stated, “I knew what it was like to go through it alone. Delaware Dreams has been a real morale booster.”
Looking ahead to the year 2018 –Delaware Dreams was holding our 28th annual Nemours Hospital for Children Oncology family picnic. This particular year, in keeping with our ultimate goal of providing an opportunity for families to join together and share stories of hope, we invited a former patient’s family to attend and take a few minutes to speak about their experience with cancer treatment at Nemours... The Mom of the pediatric oncology patient shared her family’s story of cancer treatment, some low moments, and hopeful moments. When she was finishing her speech she said to the attentive audience –“… I want to share the brightness that can come following a difficult time-fighting cancer. I want to bring up my daughter, a former cancer patient who is doing wonderfully, and her baby daughter, my granddaughter. My thought was: now that is a real morale booster.
Delaware Dreams continues its mission of bringing a smile to a child’s face. We are grateful and honored to do so.
To learn more about Delaware Dreams, please visit our web site – DEdreams.org
This year Delaware Dreams is proud to be an approved charity for the 2021 Combined Federal Campaign (CFC). Please recommend Delaware Dreams to anyone you know who is a federal employee or retiree who may be interested in supporting our mission. Thank you!
Delaware Dreams Foundation
CFC Code 35795