Tuesday, 04 May 2021

Launch of new online course to support grieving children

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Launch of new online course to support grieving children

New online course to support children grieving due to COVID-19

We are pleased to announce the launch of our latest Patch Academy course, created in response to the present COVID-19 pandemic that has left thousands of grieving children in its wake   
South Africa remains in the midst of dealing with the catastrophic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic while facing the very real possibility of a third wave and of new and stronger viral mutations. With already over 54,000 deaths of mostly adults, many thousands of children and grandchildren have been left grieving in the wake of this crisis.   In a country that is still struggling to control the epidemics of TB an HIV resulting in many thousands of children losing parents, we are now faced with a pandemic where a large percentage of deaths occur amongst people over 65 years of age. This means that children are now also losing grandparents who, in many cases, have been primary caregivers.

Those who study childhood development are acutely aware of the often traumatising and harmful effects on babies, children and adolescents when they lose a parent or a primary caregiver. If not provided with adequate emotional support, this damage can manifest throughout their lives in poor school performance, unhealthy relationship choices, and unstable mental health. However, when children receive the nurturing care of confident and reassuring adults from within their family, close friends and communities, they can be helped to cope with their loss and learn to be resilient.

Our newest Patch Academy course Supporting Grieving Children in the Time of COVID-19 is designed to provide both theoretical and practical advice and information on how to provide appropriate support to grieving children. It is presently offered completely free of charge and is for anyone concerned or connected with children and adolescents affected by the death of loved ones, whether through COVID-19 or not, and wishes to be better equipped to support them and help them to develop resilience. The course is highly relevant for parents, teachers, health care providers, caregivers, and spiritual leaders.

To find out more and to take the online course visit the Patch Academy website at www.academy.patchsa.org

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About PatchSA

Palliative Treatment for Children (Patch) South Africa is an inclusive and compassionate network that aims to share specialised knowledge, tools, resources and opportunities to ensure the best possible care for children with life-threatening and life-limiting illnesses, and to provide support to healthcare professionals, families and lay caregivers.Our vision is to ensure the right of every child to access quality palliative care in South Africa and our mission is to mobilise and support a sustainable network of individuals, organisations, professionals and caregivers to provide holistic and culturally appropriate palliative care for children and their families from diagnosis to bereavement.This is done in the following ways:

Support: PatchSA works to ensure the voice of the child and family informs all activities of our network. We promote care for the health care providers and lay caregivers providing day to day care to these children.

Advocacy: PatchSA is a strong collaborative voice for the right of children to receive quality palliative care.  We aim to  influence policy development in children's palliative care and to advocate for the integration of palliative care into all children's services.

Information:  PatchSA provides a comprehensive source of information on children's palliative care and service providers within our borders.  We develop locally appropriate guidelines and standards for children's palliative care including information on loss, grief and bereavement for children.

Education: PatchSA provides evidence-based education in children's palliative care for professionals and caregivers.

Research: PatchSA signposts research relevant to children's palliative care in order to drive the research agenda for evidence-based children's palliative care.

Find out more at: www.patchsa.org 

For further information please contact

:Sue Boucher 
PatchSA Project & Communications Manager
Email:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   

Cell: 0823744632 

For radio or TV interview purposes, please contact:

Dr Michelle Meiring  
PatchSA Chair
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Cell:  082 408 7102 

Published in Health and Medicine