Shining a light on our incredible education support program teachers
All the money raised through Footy Colours Day funds Fight Cancer Foundation’s education support programs. Our program educators deserve a standing ovation for their dedication to helping kids with cancer when they need support the most.
Keeping kids with cancer engaged with their education during their treatment and recovery is no small feat, especially when their treatment can make them feel so unwell. Luckily, our program is staffed with some incredible and supportive educators, like Trisha.
Trisha began working as a fulltime educator at the Sydney Children’s Hospital Randwick in September 2015.
“The education support program makes a real difference to the lives of children with cancer by keeping them educationally connected with their learning and socially connected with their school and peers whilst they are undergoing treatment. This program provides a link between the child, their family and school, providing invaluable support” Trisha explains.
“I usually average around 50 active students who I monitor. Some I tutor or visit several times a week whilst they are on ward, others once a week during clinic visits and there are those who I only see monthly. Both my volunteer teacher and I are also teaching one on one via Zoom to children at home, who due to health issues cannot attend their home school.
“My favourite part of this job is the connection with patients and their families. Being able to identify the child’s educational needs and put things in place to address these is both interesting and varied. Part of my role is advocating for the child and linking in with their school to achieve the best outcome possible. Having an impact on someone’s future is very rewarding” she said.
COVID-19 has changed the education support program teaching practices significantly, Trisha explains.
“During March, we set up procedures to teach remotely and connect with patients and their families. When parents were asked to pull their children and siblings out of school if they were deemed higher risk, the education support program was there to assist. Many were back to the isolated lives they thought they had left behind. But many of the routines tried during this time have been so successful, that they will be integrated into normal practices post COVID” she said.
It’s not just important to support a child with cancer while they are in hospital, but equally as important to help them post-treatment, Trisha explains.
“I believe that the program plays a significant role in supporting oncology patients in the short and long term. Not only are we visible across the hospital setting, we are also aware of where children are on their cancer journey and able to address their educational needs throughout this time” she said.
When you host a Footy Colours Day event, you help provide a salary for trained educators like Trisha, ensuring kids with cancer are given the best opportunity to keep up with their school and not fall behind. Join the Footy Colours Day team by registering here.