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110 Reviews
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February 28, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

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Review from Guidestar
February 28, 2011
1 person found this review helpful

My son, Ian, was diagnosed with leukemia at the end of last May. It was the most devastating thing that has ever happened to me in my life. I was so overwhelmed with emotion, and trying to deal with all the changes that became part of my life, and Cancer Connection helped with this. They provided a wonderful manual at the beginning of my son's diagnosis that helped me to better understand what he was going through, and helped me to find some coping strategies. Thing went along fine for several months, and then this winter I had an emotional relapse. I started to feel upset about my son's diagnosis again, even though things were still going well. I didn't understand this, and my confusion made me feel even worse. Cancer Connection was there for me again. They connected me with another mom who had a daughter with leukemia. We were able to meet and talk, and it helped me tremendously. Additionally, there is always someone from Cancer Connection at the oncology clinic to help the kids in the waiting area with crafts, games, etc. My son enjoys working with these volunteers and I'm thankful that they are willing to share their time to make our visit at the clinic (not my son's favorite place) a little more pleasant. Life changes in so many ways when your child is diagnosd with cancer. There are the obvious changes like hospital and clinic visits, and lost of medical bills, but there are also a lot of challenges that people don't think about as readily, such as the continual emotional roller coaster and strain to parents, dealing with side effects, and trying to help your child feel positive about an awful situation. Cancer Connection helps to fill the gap for these concerns.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

that I am a mother of a child with cancer and this organization helped serve my family.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make more support groups available on different nights, and perhaps for different types of cancer.

February 26, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 26, 2011

All our children have attended the Heart Connection summer camps and programs since 1991. Our oldest son was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor when he was 5 years old. Less then a year after his surgery and radiation treatments (still in a wheel chair and with great reservations of letting him go for a week) we took him to the Heart Connection Summer Oncology Camp. It was the thrill of his summer and he continued to go every summer until he "graduated". Now he attends the "weekend" retreats for the older kids who are cancer survivors. He also volunteered a summer working in the arts and crafts.

His younger sister and brother also attended the sibling camps. All three thoroughly loved the fun they cherished during those weeks at the summer camps. They never missed attending a camp. It was their summer highlight. They made new friends who they may know for their lifetime. Our daughter is returning as a volunteer and hopes to use her RN experience and volunteer at the health lodge during the camp.

The fond memories the camp gives these children is unsurpassed and unforgettable! The Heart Connection Children's Cancer Connection programs makes a difference in a child's eyes and provides them with love to see some of the rainbows in life!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing how it has changed our children's lives

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make no change, it's already making all the right choices

February 15, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 15, 2011

My older sister was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was 11 years old, I was 8 and our brother was 5. We heard about the Heart Connection through the Blank Children's Hospital in Des Moines. In the summer of 1998 my sister went to camp for the first time in June. She came back with nothing but good things to say about it so my brother and I attended sibling week in July that same summer. From my very first day at camp I have made lifelong friends every time I go. These friends have always been my biggest support and most stable things in my life; especially after my sister passed away at age 15 in December 2000.

I must admit during my teenage years I got into quite a bit of trouble at home and the summer right before my senior year my parents told me I couldn't go to camp; that was the end of life as I knew it. I expressed to my parents how important it was that I went, camp was my therapy in life and without I would have gone crazy and ended up in a bad place. After talking with my parents they decided to let me go, they could tell over the previous 8 years of being a camper how much camp meant to me and my brother.

After I graduated high school I came back to camp as a volunteer, first on the kitchen staff (during the floods of 2008), then as a counselor, and last year on the Directors Team. Throughout the years I also have part-took in Stand Up to Cancer, the Annual Ski Trip, Walk to the Beat, and many other fundraisers. I know how important the Children's Cancer Connection is to me and how much it has helped me cope in life, so I try to give back to the organization as much as possible so other people just like me can get the love and support they need to make it through the battle against cancer.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my every day life. I try not to take things for granted and whenever I need to vent or support from one of my friends I ALWAYS call someone I met through the Children's Cancer Connection.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

not change one thing!

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

How did you find this group?

Blank Children's Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa.

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

Oh so many....the most important ones I talked about above.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

February 14, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 14, 2011

My sister was diagnosed with Leukemia at age 9 (I was 8). Although I was distraught and extremely scared, I found comfort in knowing the Heart Connection was there as a support, along with my wonderful family. I was a camper, a counselor, and have volunteered for several events since I was 8 years old. Now that I am 30, I still find comfort in knowing the organization exists and is as strong as ever for children enduring the same bump in the road as I did. The Heart Connection is a wonderful organization with an amazing staff!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my day to day life as a child and feel all children in the same or more severe situation deserve to receive services from this organization.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

do nothing! They are wonderful!

February 14, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 14, 2011

We have been a involved with the Children's Cancer Connection since 1989 when one of our 6 children was diagnosed with lukeamia. We have sent 4 children to camp and have had a child involved as a camper, volunteer couselor or paid staff program director every year since. The Children's Cancer Connection is very supportive of the entire family for the entire journey and even 20+ years of survival. We have all volunteered and supported this great organization. It makes the journey no one ever wants to take so much easier.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Many ways, but mostly through the smiles on the kids' faces at camp, sporting events, parties, etc....................

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Finance and endowment for them so they would never have to worry about funding in the future and could just continue to expand and make more wonderful memories for such a deserving group of children.

February 14, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 14, 2011

This organization has helped us in so many ways. We are very greatful for all of the activities they have provided for our kids. The camp has helped both my boys understand and deal with the impact that cancer has put on their lives. Also, made them see that they are not alone and not feel insecure from the scars. They greatly enjoy the camp and mini-camp and cannot wait for the next to come. We love The Cancer Connection!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My children attend the camps.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes

February 12, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 12, 2011

Children's Cancer Connection helped us from the very beginning of my son's cancer diagnosis. They gave us a backpack full of useful items that we needed for our journey through treatment plus fun things for my son. Then when summer came they provided him with Camp. He loved it!! They were great with him and he got to be with other kids that were going through the same thing. Camp provided him with skills he needed to be around others and work through his disabilities and give him some sense of normalcy. Children's Cancer Connection is a great organization that helps not only the children but their families. They help make the journey a lot more bearable for everyone involved. They are always so nice and willing to help with anything they can. My family has definately been blessed to have known the organization and the people!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My son's treatment plans and his camp experiences.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

No changes! Its great!

February 11, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 11, 2011

My 12 year old son is a leukemia survivor. Although he is a cancer survivor he has lasting effects from the chemotherapy treatment. He has been attending summer camp via children's cancer connection since he was 5 years old. This camp provides one of the best (if not THE best) experience for him. He loves the camp, the counselors, his fellow campers and feels like it is a second home. He has the opportunity to talk with and interact with other kids who also have lasting effects due to cancer treatment. Heart Connection cancer camp allows him to see that he is not alone and gives him the opportunity to open up and connect with others at a very private emotional level. As he gets older he has become more sensative to his situation and how the world sees him. When at camp he is just one of the kids. Camp is a soft place to land and fires him up and makes it possible for him to continue to face his daily challenges. I just can't say enough about Children's Cancer Connection, the organization and the services they provide. Without camp we would be crushed!!!!! This organization is the absolute best!!!!!!!!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

This organization made it possible for my son to attend summer camp when he was the most sick with cancer and was still receiving chemotherapy treatment. This organization continues to make it possible for my son to attend summer camp after cancer treatment while learing to live with the lasting effects of treatment. This organization has provided a wonderful life experience for my child. An experience I truly don't think he would get else where.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

At this time I have no suggestions. I am so thankful for what they do provide. I just think they are wonderful!

February 11, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 11, 2011

I've been involved with Children's Cancer Connection for the past 12 years as a camper at Heart Connection. Not only is it one of my absolute favorite places on Earth, but it is a wonderful program that has shown me that there is some good that can come out of such an ugly disease. I plan on volunteering for Heart Connection as much as possible in the future and would advise anyone else to get involved in any way they can.

I was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia at the age of 5 and the nurses at the University of Iowa Children's Hospital informed my family of this unique camp. After the first year, I was hooked. Heart Connection and Children's Cancer Connection gave me hope, courage, and strength when I needed it most. It also gave me friendships that will last a lifetime. I'm so grateful for every opportunity I've had with them.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Thanks to Heart Connection, I've gained many lifelong friends and countless once in a lifetime opportunities.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

make camp a week longer!

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

How did you find this group?

The University of Iowa Children's Hospital

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

They've helped me to be more independent and to believe in myself. They've also taught me that scars are beautiful.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

February 11, 2011

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Review from Guidestar
February 11, 2011

Our daughter Ava, age 10, is lucky to be a leukemia survivor. Every summer since 2005, she and her brother Jared, age 12, spend an amazing week at the CCC camps, which keeps our entire family humble of heart and bonded to the cancer community, enriching our sense of gratitude for health, life, and the eternal human spirit. CCC is our most powerful connection to the cancer experience, which helps us strive to be better individuals and a closer family.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the overall wellbeing of my family.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

just keep spreading the word about its amazing impact on the lives of children's cancer victims and their families.

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