When we first got to Children's, the staff notified of us the Beads of Courage program. It seemed like a wonderful program. Things moved quite quickly with Cohen and our little boy was so very courageous. He earned LOTS of beads that we will cherish forever. It is definitely an item that will be in something fireproof when we aren't home.
I gathered some information from the Beads of Courage website. All the information below tells you about the program. Below that, I will show some of the pictures of Cohen's beads and pictures of us stranding his beads. He earned many "special" beads and even a bead from another Cohen. I plan to gather some beautiful beads to send for the program.
beads of courage program
our main program definedEvery bead tells a story of strength, honor and hope.
What is the Beads of Courage Program?
The Program is a resilience-based intervention designed to support and strengthen the protective resources in children coping with serious illness. Through the program children tell their story using colorful beads as meaningful symbols of courage that commemorate milestones they have achieved along their unique treatment path.
how it worksUpon enrollment each child is given the Beads of Courage bead color guide with a detachable membership card. Their Beads of Courage journey begins when each child is first given a length of string and beads that spell out their first name. Then, colorful beads, each representing a different treatment milestone are given to the child by their professional health care provider to add to their Beads of Courage collection throughout their treatment as determined by the Beads of Courage Bead Guide (available from Beads of Courage, Inc.) There are specific Beads of Courage Program Bead guides for cancer, cardiac conditions, burn injuries, and serious illness. All Program bead guides were developed in collaboration with experts in the field (nurses, doctors, child life specialists and social workers) so that each bead guide would reflect meaningful acknowledgment of a child's treatment journey.
major benefitsOngoing evaluation of the Beads of Courage program indicates that the program helps to decrease illness-related distress, increase the use of positive coping strategies, helps children find meaning in illness, and restore sense of self in children coping with serious illness. The program also provides something tangible the child can use to tell about their experience during cancer treatment and after.
Throughout history, in cultures across the world, beads have had a huge number of functions. Here are a few interesting facts.
Beads signify strength and courageJust like medals, ribbons and certificates, many ancient and modern-day cultures use beads to show bravery and accomplishment. They have long been used to protect warriors from natural and supernatural enemies, along with lending special magical protection for heroes during long journeys.
Beads have every-day usesThey have served many practical purposes throughout history, from weighing down scrolls, saddle blankets and table cloths to serving as calculators (like the abacus) to prayer tools (like the rosary). Today, we see beads in mats, car seats, and curtains. Can you think of any ways that people use beads today?
Beads carry valueBeads have been traded for everything from gold to beaver pelts, ivory to spices, and even slaves. Societies across the world have made beads from tortoise shells, wood, pottery, sea shells, seed, ivory, stone, egg shells, animal teeth, bone, claw and horn…and glass. Some of the world's most talented glass artists devote their whole careers to making beads.
In many societies, beads are believed to carry protective and healing powersDid you know that the Egyptian word sha means "luck" and sha-sha means "bead"? The Magical Eye bead of Turkey is believed to ward off evil. In parts of Asia, beads were scattered like seeds at temples to induce bountiful harvests.
Beads signify statusIn China, during the Qing (pronounced "ching") Dynasty, officials, army officers, their wives and children were required to wear strings of court beads. The Emperor himself had to wear special beads. For the Asante people of West Africa, kings and other great people get the privilege of wearing Bodom beads. In our own society beads of pearl, gold and precious stones can be symbols of wealth and prestige.
Given the length of time people have been fascinated with beads (over 43,000 years!), as well as their usefulness for counting, adorning and symbolizing importance, they're just right for recognizing and recording your courage as you travel this journey.
Cohen got lots of beads. Each bead was because of a surgery, needle prick, medication, etc...
The cool and unique beads were for something major, which he earned several of. I believe for heart surgery, cardiac arrests, etc. As you saw above, on the sides of his name he had a heart and a lion. We believe he had the heart of a lion :)
One of the first few days at Children's, some of the nurses brought us a bead they had picked out. When they opened it up, they found it was from another Cohen! That was way cool!
This is the bad that was made for Cohen's beads to be kept in as he was awarded them....
Here Brent and I are stranding all his beads.....
We enjoyed the program at Children's. It taught us about everything Cohen was going through and achieved.
April, if you are reading, I need your email address :)