Children with long-term illnesses in hospital, or at home, do better if they stay in close contact with school. On top of their physical burdens, long or repeated absences from school can cause children’s motivation to plummet and their mental health to suffer.
Children from disadvantaged backgrounds are more vulnerable to isolation as they have less access to technology. Since 2006, ClassContact has helped around 1,000 children from 415 schools and 14 hospitals in the Brussels region.
In Belgium, the Goodman Foundation is supporting ClassContact’s provision of free computers, internet connections and cameras to long-term ill children. Connecting live means they can participate in team projects and ask questions of teachers in a classroom setting.
Almost 90% of children who continue their education in this way pass their exams and progress to the next grade.
Demand exploded in 2020 because severely ill children are often at higher risk of contracting Covid, so they needed to even further self-isolate.
While ClassContact was able to support 130 children in the Brussels region during the year – with Goodman funding access for seven children – it identified another 200 children at risk of losing touch with school.
To increase the charity’s reach, Goodman helped to fund a marketing outreach to contact disadvantaged schools and social workers directly.
For nine years, Goodman has supported Bestest Foundation’s work addressing the neglected needs of severely ill or disabled children, and their families, in regional Australia. This support ensures such families do not fall through the cracks.
The organisation is highly targeted. Every dollar goes directly to a specific need such as a modified van with a patient lift hoist, a new refrigerator, a braille computer, an insulin pump, food vouchers or mental health support.
Goodman’s long-term support of Bestest Foundation shows its commitment to small organisations doing big things for families that desperately need a helping hand.