Los Angeles,
06:12 AM

Cedars-Sinai Hosts Holiday Party for Young Hematology/Oncology Patients

Holiday Party for Young Hematology/Oncology Patients

It was a very special night for children and their families at the Cedars-Sinai Pediatric Hematology/Oncology party last week. The children, who are treated at Cedars-Sinai for cancer and blood disorders, were able to take a night off from their sickness and enjoy a festive evening, complete with arts and crafts, face painting and a magic show.

Aliza Kaplan brought her seven-year-old daughter Lola, who is in the middle of treatment for Hodgkin lymphoma. The young patient participated in a magic show and was looking forward to dancing and doing arts and crafts. Kaplan said they received clearance from Lola's physician just days earlier to attend the party.

"It's exciting to be able to do something fun and celebrate and get out and have fun and smile," Kaplan said. "It's a great event."

Cedars-Sinai pediatric hematologist/oncologist Fataneh Majlessipour, MD, said the party is a meaningful tradition for patients.

"I think it's very important for them to get together and enjoy their family and friends outside the hospital in a relaxed environment," Majlessipour said. "We are celebrating life, we are celebrating a New year."

Highlights included an appearance by Santa Claus and plentiful gifts from 80 bags filled with donated toys. Students at El Segundo High School donate and packaged the gifts, a tradition started 15 years ago by a student who wanted to honor a friend undergoing cancer treatment.

Aliza Kaplan was delighted that her daughter could enjoy a lighthearted evening.

"It was wonderful to do something that has nothing to do with her care and is literally just having fun and hanging out," Kaplan said.

Read more on the Cedars-Sinai blog: Pediatric Cancer Patient Kameron Sharpe Isn't Giving Up