We became aware of the existence and offers of the association rather by chance in the year 2000. At the beginning of September 2000 we came with our daughter Natalie to the children's ward 1 of the university hospital in Halle because of an MRI examination. The first few nights I, as Natalie's mother, was able to stay in the room with her, but this was no longer possible after the necessary operation. Through a conversation with a nurse of the ward, I became aware of the possibility to stay overnight in the club house.
As a result, I moved into a room in the house of the support association and the support association slowly moved into our further life. In the first days it was only important to have a place to stay close to the clinic in order to spend as much time as possible with our daughter and to have a place of retreat in the evenings where we as parents could talk about the current state of treatment and further options without being disturbed.
Our daughter had to stay on the ward until mid-October because the healing process after the operation was not without complications.
During these weeks, the retreat in the club became more and more important for us. We were able to talk to other parents and had small breaks from the rather strenuous daily routine in the hospital. Through the weekly parents' dinner, I got to know various employees of the association. Everyone had an open ear for the "helplessness" in this situation. Simply being able to share one's great worries and needs was already incredibly relieving.
Even though our daughter was not able to take advantage of the play activities at her parents' house during the first treatment cycle, she gladly accepted the activities offered on the ward as far as her treatment allowed. She was very much looking forward to the music therapist, as she had already enjoyed participating in the "Musikgarten" at our music school.
A few months later, she had to undergo chemotherapy due to a recurrence. When the healing process in this 2nd treatment block made it possible, Natalie was already happy early at breakfast that she could also leave the ward in the afternoon. On these days, she used the opportunity to play and do handicrafts with other children in the clubhouse, undisturbed by the daily treatment routine.
In the clubhouse, I again took advantage of the opportunities to talk with other parents as well as with employees of the club. I found my stay there to be a small break from the daily routine of the clinic. In the meantime, we also became members of the association.
During the necessary radiation treatment of our daughter, who was now already 5 years old, she was able to take advantage of the now expanded offers almost daily and also recharge her batteries for this phase of treatment.
Thanks to the many small and also larger help from the association, we were able to cope much better with the difficult situation. The exchange of experiences with other parents also helped us.
Our daughter also "forgot" the necessity of her inpatient treatment for a short time in the playroom or during the activities on the ward and experienced many wonderful moments thanks to the great commitment of the association's staff.
But also in the following years we took advantage of the many opportunities offered by the support association, such as the parents' meetings or the Christmas events in the Krokoseum. Some years ago our daughter Natalie participated in the foundation and maintenance of a youth group, but this is no longer possible due to her job-related move to Frankfurt Oder.
Ramona Sauerland, Natalie Sauerland, Nikola Sauerland and Ingolf Leske