Lighthouse Family Retreats hosts beach retreat for families living with childhood cancer

Local News

SANDESTIN, Fla. (WMBB) — More than 10,000 children under the age of 15 will be diagnosed with cancer in 2021 according to the American Cancer Society and one charitable organization is helping families who are living with childhood cancer.

Lighthouse Family Retreat hosts dozens of beach retreats every year and now they’re celebrating some of those families right in our own backyard.

Lighthouse has the goal of strengthening who are living with childhood cancer and one way they do that is through their annual beach retreats.

“We’re down here for a week for these families just to get away from the chaos of cancer and it’s been incredible,” Lighthouse Partner and Leader Development Vice President, Jennifer Ward said.

Ward said it’s important for families to be able to reconnect with one another because she said a cancer diagnosis can impact a family in more ways than one.

“For people to be able to come together and just have some time to restore as a family is really, really important,” Ward said.

The charitable group said they were only able to hold one retreat last year as a result of the pandemic which is why they said this year is so important.

“So it’s extra special this year to be able to come together,” Ward said. “We don’t take for granted what we’re able to do year after a year like last year. So it was enormously impactful but it makes this year even more special.”

Wednesday’s event was the “Un-Birthday Party” where kids had the chance to celebrate birthdays or other big milestones Ward said they may have missed out on. While the kids were at the party, their parents were treated to a date night — something Ward said some of these parents haven’t experienced in years.

Lighthouse is still in search of volunteers for this summer. If you are interested in getting involved, click here.

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