Celebrating Pediatric Cancer Social Workers on World Social Work Day: Embracing ‘Buen Vivir’ for Transformative Change

Author: Bethany Lieberman:

March 19, 2024, marks World Social Work Day. Today, we sincerely thank all social workers, especially pediatric cancer social workers, who profoundly impact cancer care by assessing young patient’s needs, advocating for resources, and responding to crises promptly. This year’s theme, ‘Buen Vivir: Shared Future for Transformative Change,’ beautifully encapsulates the essence of these professionals’ daily work. We celebrate their commitment, innovative approaches, and holistic perspective, which transform the landscape of pediatric cancer care.

Commitment to a Shared Future:

Pediatric cancer social workers are the linchpin in creating a shared future for transformative change. Their commitment resonates profoundly as they collaborate with healthcare professionals, communities, and families to enhance the quality of pediatric cancer care. Working tirelessly behind the scenes, these social workers play a crucial role in creating a supportive ecosystem beyond medical treatment. Their dedication to fostering collaboration and understanding paves the way for a shared future grounded in compassion.

Pediatric Social Workers:

  • Conduct comprehensive physical, cognitive, psychological, social, and vocational assessments.
  • Educate survivors and their families about available resources, providing support and counseling, and facilitating referrals as needed.
  • Encourage survivors to attend medical appointments, maintain medical records, and adopt healthy lifestyles.
  • Address survivors’ concerns regarding sexuality, fertility, and coping with the emotional challenges of survivorship.

Empowered with important information, families, patients, and survivors can better appreciate the potential long-term side effects of the cancer experience for the entire family and learn what can be done to improve everyone’s quality of life. CAC2 has gathered over 500 resources — in one place — to help social workers and families identify resources that are uniquely helpful for a child’s specific cancer type and journey. Please explore our Toolkit HERE.

Innovative and Community-led Approaches:

These social workers illuminate pediatric cancer patients and their families’ resilience and strength through innovative, community-led approaches. Recognizing that conventional methods may fall short, they proactively seek new ways to address each family’s unique challenges. Through developing networks, educational programs, and accessible resources, pediatric cancer social workers are changing lives. Their efforts go beyond conventional boundaries, ensuring families have the support they need at every step of their journey.

Holistic Perspective on Pediatric Cancer Care:

Pediatric cancer social workers embrace indigenous wisdom and bring a holistic perspective to care. They understand that the battle against pediatric cancer is not only physical but also emotional, social, and spiritual. By acknowledging and nurturing these dimensions, social workers contribute to the well-being of the children and families they support. This holistic approach ensures that no aspect of the cancer journey is overlooked, fostering a comprehensive and compassionate environment for healing.

Embodying the Essence of ‘Buen Vivir’:

The dedication and passion displayed by pediatric cancer social workers embody the essence of ‘Buen Vivir’ – a shared future grounded in compassion, understanding, and transformative change. Through their work, they exemplify the principles of living well together, acknowledging the interconnectedness of all elements in the pediatric cancer care ecosystem. Their efforts contribute to a society where the well-being of every child and family facing pediatric cancer is a shared responsibility.

Expressing Gratitude to Unsung Heroes:

As we celebrate World Social Work Day, let’s express our heartfelt gratitude to all social workers who drive transformative change in healthcare. We sincerely thank pediatric cancer social workers who dedicate their lives to making a difference for the children. Their commitment to a shared future, innovative approaches, and holistic perspective are the cornerstones of transformative change in pediatric cancer care. As we embrace the ‘Buen Vivir’ theme, we recognize and honor all social workers for embodying compassion, understanding, and a shared commitment to a better future for all.



CAC2 Survivorship Toolkit | https://cac2.org/impact-areas/survivorship/survivorship-toolkit/

Association of Pediatric Oncology Social Workers | https://aposw.org/

Psychosocial Standards of Care for Children with Cancer and Their Families: A National Survey of Pediatric Oncology SOcial Workers | https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih/gov/pmc/articles/PMC6726426/

Childhood Cancer Survivorship: An Overview for Social Workers | https://www.socialworkers.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=mQsXvQG8zcQ%3D&portalid=0

#PediatricCancerSocialWorkers #WorldSocialWorkDay #BuenVivir #TransformativeChange #Gratitude #CAC2