Since becoming a Global Ambassador for the International Children’s Palliative Care Network, popular Latin American actor, Roberto Manrique, has shown a determination to find out as much as he can about children’s palliative care – what it is and how it benefits children and their families. While recently on holiday in California, Roberto paid a visit to George Mark Children’s House in San Francisco and, with the support of Providence TrinityKids Care, spent a day visiting a number of children and families the organisation has on their programme.
Roberto describes his visits as being “very emotional” and relates that he was particularly touched by his visit to a seventeen year old boy named Kenneth who lives with his mother. The actor recalls Kenneth’s mother’s description of all they have gone through since Kenneth became ill at ten years of age and that says that presently Kenneth is unable to see or hear and is permanently bedbound. A highlight of this visit for Roberto was being invited to stay for a delicious meal of tamales with the family!
Roberto goes on to describe his visit to George Mark Children’s House in San Francisco as a “completely different experience” – one which you can read about in a previous ehospice article. Something that made a strong impression on him was that only two patients were using the home’s eight bed facility because there is not enough awareness of the wonderful services they provide.
Reflecting on the value of the time he spent visiting families and George Mark Children’s House, Roberto says that it has “… also helped me understand what children’s palliative care means and the different stages and type of work it implies.”
About TrinityKids Care
TrinityKids Care is a programme of Providence TrinityCare Hospice and is the only dedicated paediatric hospice programme in Los Angeles and Orange counties for infants, children and adolescents with life-limiting illnesses. It provides in-home care and support for young patients and their families. Services offered include:
- Pain control, symptom management and end-of-life comfort care
- An on-call nurse, social worker and chaplain, 24 hours, seven days-a-week
- Hospice physician consultation
- Family counseling
- Emotional and spiritual support
- Help in obtaining medicine, supplies and equipment for the child
- Assistance with the child’s practical needs such as feeding and bathing
- Supportive services for the child’s siblings
- Grief and loss support
Learn more about TrinityKids Care at: http://california.providence.org/trinitycare/our-services/trinitykids-care/