Camp Quality’s Cancer Education Program has been educating Aussie kids about cancer for 33 years and has recently revealed a major upgrade, with re-designed puppets, extra characters, new shows and teacher resources.
The redevelopment focuses on inclusivity and telling the broader cancer story, including how to support someone who is facing their own cancer diagnosis or that of a loved one.
Six new, brightly coloured puppets have been created by Melbourne-based company, A Blanck Canvas, who developed them to be more contemporary and engaging, as well as easily-sanitisable for safer contact with immune compromised children.
Puppets making a difference
Eight-year-old Imogen from Malvern, Victoria, knows just how powerful the Cancer Education Program is, after she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in February this year.
As Imogen started to go back to school between chemotherapy treatments, Camp Quality’s Cancer Education Program was there to help her classmates understand what she was going through and dispel any cancer myths, with a visit in May this year.
Imogen’s mum Shannon said, ‘At the end of the show when her classmates answered the questions, it was really obvious that they had listened and learned a lot. Imogen was reassured that her peers understood her condition.
‘They all think she is so brave, and everyone wants to be her friend and take care of her.’
Imogen is currently finishing up her intense treatment and will soon be onto phase three, continuation treatment, for two more years.
Imogen and Shannon were excited to attend the relaunch along with Imogen’s school group and meet the new puppets.
Camp Quality’s CEO, Deborah Thomas, said the redevelopment is a major milestone for the charity.
‘Our Cancer Education Program has helped thousands of children facing cancer over many years and is proven to reduce bullying, days absent from school and the need for mental health support services for kids and families impacted by cancer.
‘Cancer doesn’t discriminate so we wanted to ensure our new puppets were inclusive and that children everywhere could relate to them,’ said Ms Thomas.
The new live performances have been developed in consultation with subject matter experts.
Newly developed Teacher Resource Packs are aligned to curriculums and provide further learning on the social and emotional impacts of cancer.
The Camp Quality Puppets also provide therapeutic positivity and fun to kids facing cancer in hospital and online through Puppet Playdates.