Fabulous Find Friday: Luke’s Fastbreaks

Today’s Fabulous Find is Luke’s FastBreaks, an organization that works to help pediatric oncology patients feel like children instead of patients when they are in the hospital. Luke’s FastBreaks does this by replacing boring hospital gowns with fun medical shirts. These shirts are designed to make it easy for children to wear while they also have their port accessed and other lines that they might have while hospitalized. The shirt has special snap tape on the sides that makes it easy to open and close as needed to take care of the patient’s lines while also helping the child feel as normal as possible during their hospitalization.

Luke fought cancer and won and now he’s giving back with the shirts that were created to help him cope with his hospitalization.  As Child Life Specialists, we know how hard it is for patients (especially teens) to wear the hospital gowns during their long stays. These patients want to be comfortable during their stay and Luke’s special medical shirts helps patients do just that.

Check out LukesFastBreaks.org  to learn more about what the organization does and how to help get shirts for your patients.


Fabulous Find Friday: Pabs Packs

Today’s Fabulous Find Friday is PABS PACKS. PABS PACKS was created to provide comfort to hospitalized teens. When the founders, Pia and Abbie, were each diagnosed with illnesses that left them hospitalized, they realized that there was a lack of comfort items for teens that are in the hospital. These strong survivors chose to change that and started making comfort packages to send to hospitalized teens. These backpacks have items specially chosen to comfort and distract teens during their hospital stay.

To learn more, check out www.pabspacks.org.

Fabulous Find Friday: Child’s Play

We all know how popular video games are and many of us have probably also read the research that too much video games can have negative affects on a child’s development. But for hospitalized children, video games can also provide many benefits. Besides the entertainment aspect for those children who can’t leave the hospital, these interactive games can also help patients cope with stressful situations and invasive procedures.

Child’s Play is an organization that provides video games and toys for hospitalized children and also domestic violence shelters. Through working with the hospital to create Amazon wishlists and also utilizing cash donations, Child’s Play creates play opportunities for hospitalized children throughout the world.

Visit http://childsplaycharity.org/ to learn more about this wonderful organization.

Also check out Child’s Play Therapeutic Video Game guide which offers video games suggestions based on related therapeutic goals.



Fabulous Find Friday: Dec My Room

Today’s Fabulous Find Friday is Dec My Room. Dec My Room is an organization that changes hospital rooms from dull to personalized and comfortable. When a patient is going to be admitted for a while, Dec My Room volunteers will find out the patient’s interests and go out and shop so that they can decorate the room to feel more cozy for the patient. No hospital stay is easy, but having a room that feels like home can often help the patient cope better with their hospitalization.

To learn more, check out their website; http://www.decmyroom.org/

Crash Course: Bunk’D

Today’s Crash Course show is geared more towards late school age and early adolescents. If the characters look familiar, that’s because Bunk’D is a spinoff from another Disney show, Jessie. The Ross siblings attend Camp Kikiwaka where they follow in their parent’s footsteps as counselors and campers.

emma-ross-e1526832043144.jpg Emma Ross is played by Peyton List. As the oldest Ross sibling, she hass a bubbly and focused personality. She starts the series at a Counselor in Training (CIT) but by the end of season two she has become a camp counselor.

ravi ross Ravi Ross is played by Karan Brar. Ravi is also a counselor in training who is known for being nice but also a little naive. He has a 7-foot long pet lizard names Ms. Kipling. At the end of season 2, Ravi also becomes a counselor.

zuri ross Zuri Ross is played by Skai Jackson. Zuri is the youngest Ross sibling and is a camper at Camp Kikiwaka. Zuri is an energetic and happy girl who goes on adventures with her friends and siblings.

lou bunkd Lou Hockhauser is played by Miranda May. Lou is the cheerful head counselor who is also close friends with Emma. Although sometimes a little over the top with her enthusiasm and energy, Lou always means well and wants to help her friends.

xander-bunkd.jpg Xander McCormick is played by Kevin G. Quinn. Xander is a musical counselor who dates Emma through most of the series. Xander shares a cabin with Ravi and often helps him out with his Counselor in Training tasks and duties.

tiffany-bunkd.jpg Tiffany Chen is played by Nina Lu. Tiffany is considered a perfectionist who tries to impress her mother with her good grades. She chooses to study most of the time instead of having fun but with Zuri as her bunkmate she does go one fun adventures.

jorge-bunkd.jpg Jorge Ramirez is played by Nathan Arena. Jorge is Zuri’s good friend and he is also a friend of Ravi’s. Jorge is an energetic and hyper friend who is known for being a chronic liar and telling fibs.

To learn more about Bunk’D, check out the Bunk’D Wiki page


Fabulous Find Friday: Got Transition

In one of my classes this past summer, we talked about transitioning pediatric patients to adult care facilities. This transition requires the involvement of the pediatric care team, the adult care team and also the family. Got Transition offers a variety of resources to both health care professionals and also the youth and their families.

As Child Life Specialists, we are trained to assess developmental levels and provide developmentally appropriate education and support. This means that we are well equipped to support families during their transition to adult care. I encourage you all to explore Got Transition to learn more about the transition and resources and support that you can offer these families.

Fabulous Find Friday: Digging Deep Journal

Digging Deep is a journal for seriously ill children, in particular for teens. Adolescents in the hospital struggle to be heard and struggle to cope with all the changes that are happening. While all ages need support to help them cope in the hospital environment, there are not a lot of resources available specifically for teens. I received a Digging Deep Journal at conference this year and I think it’s a great tool for teens. Writing therapy is well established as a way to increase positive coping. To learn more about the benefits of writing therapy, visit this article: Can Writing Therapy Help Troubled Teens?

The journal is available online and also in a hard copy.  Visit this page to read the journal online: http://read.uberflip.com/i/403921-dd-2014-short/0?m4=

I would also encourage you to check out their entire site as Digging Deep not only provides the journal, but they are also creating a video game and offer evidence based research on their site.

I’d love to hear from you about how you support teens in the hospital. Have you used Digging Deep? How else can you support positive coping in teens?