Don’t Forget the Kids (DFTK) is a Registered Charity based in North London. Founded in 2012 by Nicola Dady, who on her own journey through Cancer sought support for her children only to fine there was very little available. Nicola and her dedicated team made it their mission to create a support system for the overlooked children.
Our sole aim is to provide Creative art Sessions and peer support groups for children 0-17 who are touched by the Cancer of a parent or Caregiver. We currently run one weekly session, which is held at Broadwaters Childrens Centre, Tottenham, London.
Our objective is to allow children and young people a safe and welcoming environment to interact with others who are experiencing the same anxieties, fears and concerns. By providing a setting of this kind, helps to reduce the isolation and emotional distress the children are facing.
A typical session would include activities such as: Meaningful arts and crafts, Creative art workshops. (Music, drama, Sports) which we encourage parents/carers and children to do together. We provide healthy snacks and refreshments and support the children to learn how to make themselves a drink and a sandwich, these basic skills help the children when their parent or carer is feeling unwell at home. All activities are aimed at empowering the children and building relationships with peers and parents/carers. Age appropriate literature explaining cancer/ bereavement are to hand also information books which are for parents to be able to help their children through this adversity. We provide a forum for families to be able to openly discuss their issues in a safe non-judgemental way and escapism with others going through similar experiences.
In three years DFTK have supported over 175 young people all over the UK. For those that haven't been able to access our support sessions, we send a care package which consists of books and information, stickers and balloons. Our service is free of charge. We take referrals from schools, health professionals and social services, as well as self referral.
There are NO current statistics available for the number of children affected by the cancer or bereavement of a loved one in the UK, however we know that there is an urgent need of support for this peer group from the volume of people enquiring. We are working on expanding to other areas to be able to reach as many children in need of our support.
We are completely reliant on funding from bodies such as Children In Need, kind donations and our own annual fundraising events. The funds we raise go directly towards the support of these young people.
We would like to purchase a mobile support bus, so that we can reach different communities, hold support sessions and raise awareness. We feel that this would be a great way to engage families and introduce ourselves as the charity is fairly new, and may people do not know that this support is available for their children.