Families As Partners

Guest blog contributor Tessa Billman is Children’s Family Coordinator, and leads the Families As Partners program.

Families As Partners promotes, coordinates, and supports family involvement throughout Children’s organization.  Those who are involved are current or former patient families.  Opportunities include the Family-to-Family program, Family Advisory Council, Family Advocates, Family Advisors, and the Youth Advisory Council.

Here are a few insights into the program through volunteers’ eyes!

Veronica with newborn daughter, Kate

“I find so much joy in visiting with parents at their children’s bedsides and discussing the concerns that are on their minds.  We count ourselves extremely fortunate to be able to provide a strong, living testimony of the excellent work done at Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota.”

Veronica, NICU Pizza Break Host, Peer Mentor and Family Rounding Partner

Renee with her children

“As Chair of the Family Advisory Council, I have seen firsthand the partnership shared between families and Children’s staff.  The council, which is made up of families and staff, works together to provide input and influence on policies, programs and practices throughout the hospital to ensure that Patient and Family-Centered Care is achieved.”

Renee, Family Advisory Council Chairperson

Jody and kids

“Participating on the Cystic Fibrosis Family Council (CFFC) has been a great opportunity as a parent to partner with my daughter’s care team to enhance our life experiences as well as other patients and families living with Cystic Fibrosis (CF).   In an effort to support these families, the team developed a brochure, Traveling with CF, to help families prepare for and enjoy traveling.”

Jody, Cystic Fibrosis Family Council

Kate with family

“Our family story may be hard to share and sometimes hard to hear; nonetheless, it is even more gratifying to feel understood. It is fulfilling to know that our daughters’ experiences could possibly influence our legislators’ abilities to represent children, families and our local hospitals, and have better outcomes because of it.”

Kate, Family Advocate who met with Senator Al Franken

Thank you, family volunteers, for your dedication to improving patient & family experiences here at Children’s!

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