Children battling cancer boost their spirits in hospital’s playrooms

Children battling cancer boost their spirits in hospital’s playrooms

ISTANBUL – Anadolu Agency
Children battling cancer boost their spirits in hospital’s playrooms

Volunteers from the Hope Foundation for Children with Cancer (KAÇUV) have been working to cheer up children battling cancer at an Istanbul hospital.

KAÇUV volunteers have prepared a room of the hospital as a “playroom” for the children. In the room, they play games and spend time with fun activities.

The activities help children, who are going through intense treatment during their fight against cancer, to feel a bit better both socially and psychologically.

“I’ve been with the children for nearly two years. Here, we have fun before anything else. Because they are children. They are very intelligent and open to having fun,” Selma Baytop, one of the volunteers, said.

“Their immunity is a little low due to their treatment procedure. Thus, they can be in a protected state. Their communication with the outside world is kind of happening via us,” she added.

She also stated that the volunteers are playing different games for every age group and do activities such as designing, painting, cutting or impressing stickers.

“We make flying balloons and talk about the places we want to visit. The reason for my presence here is to do beautiful things with [the children]. But most importantly, to make their time [spent at the hospital] better,” she said.

Baytop also conveyed that she organized a fundraiser at the latest Istanbul Marathon and covered a year of education expenses for three children, thanks to the donations from her friends.

Children benefit from playroom activities

Esra Morgül, the mother of a six-and-a-half-year-old child battling cancer, said that her son becomes very happy when he sees the volunteers.

“I can say that the activities in the playroom are the only school activity for him. The [volunteers] visit almost every day and he becomes very happy to see them,” Morgül said.

“We talk about [the volunteers] even at breakfast. He says, ‘Let’s go to the playroom,’ while walking around the hospital’s halls. The children are very happy with their sisters,” she said, referring to the volunteers.