You probably have heard all about our 1st annual mom’s retreat, where we pampered 10 lovely oncology mom’s up in Merritt in September of 2018. It went so well, we knew we couldn’t leave the dads out of the picture this year, so we hosted a Dad’s Day at Lee Valley Tools in Coquitlam on September 7th, 2019.
We sent an invite to the dads (or any male caregiver) of our oncology patients at BC Children’s Hospital, in hopes of helping them to have a relaxing day away from work, home responsibilities, and most importantly their “cancer” life. It was also set up as a bonding opportunity, as often men can find it hard to connect with other men, especially when it comes to something that can be awkward, difficult to discuss, and emotional. But we know that even just being a room with others that “get it”, doing a physical activity, and taking your mind off of your daily stressors for a few hours, can be very healing for the body and mind.
We had 7 dads join us for 4 hours at Lee Valley Tools for a day of guided instruction, building a beautiful solid wood folding table. The day was complete with all of the building supplies, tools, and of course a delicious lunch provided! The supplies and space were all graciously donated by Lee Valley Tools, organized through one of their employees who is also one of our amazing volunteers and committee board members, Chuck Oliver. Chuck was so excited to help host this event, he also insisted on providing the guys with their lunch. The dads all had a great time bonding, sharing, and building more than just tables. They also built some beautiful connections that they may not have otherwise made on the oncology ward. The guys even took home a goody bag, provided by Balding for Dollars along with their table that they so proudly made.
Way to go dads! We look forward to hosting other fun event days for the dads in the near future. If you have a suggestion on a fun activity, please let us know!