As Louis' mother, Jane, explains: "Our son, Louis, was 22 when he was diagnosed with Stage IV stomach cancer on the 1st of December 2008. He died 18 months later. There are no words to describe the impact of a cancer diagnosis on a family – it hits you like a fully loaded train. And there is nothing to say about bereavement except that grief is forever."
"As a 22 year old, Louis was treated in adult hospitals. When he was in a shared room, his roommates were elderly and very ill. He needed to be with people his own age who were going through a similar journey. And he needed counselling and support, but there were no age appropriate services on offer for him or for us. This is one of the great gaping holes that Redkite has identified and is trying to fill."
"Cancer is a very expensive disease. My husband and I had to continue working so we could meet the additional expenses associated with having a child who needs 24 hour care. Redkite recognises the stress this adds to a family at a time when they are already overwhelmed. They provide financial assistance to meet everyday expenses like getting food on the table or filling the car with petrol, so you can travel the two hours a day to and from hospital to be with your child. And, as in our case, they also assist with funeral expenses."
"Although we were fortunate to have the incredible support of our family and Louis’ amazing friends, for most of our 18 month journey, we didn’t have access to the other support we desperately needed. We were painfully alone and isolated until we found Redkite. They gave us hope and that got us through."
"Your support will help Redkite bridge the gap in services for teenagers and young adults, like Louis, who can otherwise get lost in the adult hospital system."
Jane tells Louis' story
- January 2013
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