Childhood Cancer

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Surviving Cancer CAMPetently: Evidence-based Care Delivered at Family Camp

Nemours A.I. duPont Hospital for Children
Melissa Alderfer, PhD
Grant Type: 
Psychosocial Family Impact Grant
Year Awarded: 
Type of Childhood Cancer: 
General Pediatric Cancer
Project Description: 

Psychosocial care addressing the distress and family disruption that pediatric cancer causes is a minimum standard of care for children with cancer and their families. Empirically-validated interventions are available; however, such care is not routinely provided at oncology treatment facilities. We propose to launch a program of research focused on bringing a proven-effective psychosocial intervention into one of the most successful and widely used forms of community support for families of children with cancer – a pediatric oncology camp. Our research team proposes to work with Camp Directors and Family Campers from Camp Okizu in California to develop and test ways to deliver the Surviving Cancer Competently Intervention Program (SCCIP©) at Family Camp. SCCIP is a manualized intervention demonstrated to reduce cancer-related post-traumatic stress symptoms (e.g., intrusive thoughts, feeling on edge) for families of children with cancer. SCCIP teaches coping skills and ways to improve family communication about cancer in a series of four group-based sessions, typically delivered on a single day. 

Project Goal:
While the format and content of SCCIP seems ideal for delivery at Family Camp (weekend camp sessions involving parents, patient/survivors and siblings), we need to figure out how best to integrate it into that setting. This project will answer that question, preparing us for a larger research trial aimed at determining if SCCIP at Family Camp ('SCCamp") reduces cancer-related distress and the psychosocial burden of pediatric cancer. If beneficial, then we will seek out ways to bring SCCIP to other camps across the nation that offer Family Camp programs.

Co-funded by: 
Northwestern Mutual Foundation