Greater Bank has helped to brighten the lives of families who will visit Harry’s House in the coming months after delivering more than 50 presents to the family retreat at Stockton.
Harry’s House provides a home away from home for families that have a child undergoing cancer treatment in the Hunter, or for those grieving the loss of their child to cancer within the past two years.
We like to leave a personalised gift, not only for the sick child but also the siblings. It’s just a small way to make them feel pretty special.
Samantha and David Meyn established Harry’s House in 2012.
Their son Harry passed away at the age of seven in 2007, seven months after being diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour.
During Harry’s treatment, the Meyns saw first-hand the struggles families endure during such a traumatic time.
“The families that stay here are going through a tough time so above and beyond it’s providing them with a welcoming family home environment,” Ms Meyn said.
“We like to leave a personalised gift, not only for the sick child but also the siblings. It’s just a small way to make them feel pretty special.
“It means that we can focus money we would spend on the gifts into other essential areas of the house like replenishing supplies and general upkeep.”
The Greater Charitable Foundation provided $100,000 in funding to the Harry Meyn Foundation in 2016 to support Harry’s House for two years.
Harry’s House is open to the family of any child up to 18 years of age that is undergoing oncology treatment, primarily at John Hunter Children’s and The Mater Hospitals.
“Once the children undergoing treatment have left the hospital they need to stay within close proximity for follow-up treatment,” Ms Meyn said.
“For families who, for instance, are based in Singleton or Muswellbrook, they can’t go back home. Harry’s House provides a base for these families during this time.
“Unlike other facilities, this is set up so a family can come in, relax and live together as a family in a home setting ... and hopefully take their mind off what they are all going through, if even just for a short time.”
More that 100 families have used Harry’s House.