Whole Child LA

Whole Child was founded in 2009 with the goal of developing a broad net of mechanisms and therapeutic projects to help children suffering from chronic pain because there are more children seeking care than there are special physicians to treat them. Despite seeing an average of 14 doctors and due to conditions such as Sickle Cell Anemia, arthritis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, migraines, post-injury pain, cancer, fibromyalgia, genetic conditions and other diseases, these children live with so much pain that they often cannot sleep, cannot attend school, cannot engage in physical activity, have become socially isolated, and feel alone, misunderstood and abandoned by the healthcare system. Our grant for $4,807.07 is for video and photography equipment for the Frame By Frame ongoing workshop series. Approximately 50 children each year will take photographs or do filming with narrative to tell their stories, express their suffering and be heard. In this way, they can feel less isolated and more empowered through sharing with each other. The simple act of story-telling is therapeutic and as they enter their experience more fully, they can move out and away from the grip pain has on their lives. Attending workshops and hearing the stories of other patients are active steps in breaking the cycle of pain that keeps patients so alone. In addition, the photos and film stories will be posted on the Whole Child website for friends, family, teachers and other suffering children/teens. The goal of the website is to reach children in pain both nationally and around the world, so they know they are not alone.