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Pediatric Oncology Resource Team

About Our Service

The Pediatric Oncology Resource Team (P.O.R.T.) is a group of volunteer families serving families with a child battling cancer or a life-threatening blood disorder. We are families helping families.

We work in conjunction with the pediatric hematology/oncology and bone marrow transplantation teams at Helen DeVos Children's Hospital.

P.O.R.T. offers accessible sources of information regarding:

  • Cancer and blood disorders diagnoses
  • Treatments
  • Coping skills
  • Parenting methods
P.O.R.T. also offers services designed to make your days a little easier. Good company and small surprises are part of our complimentary support services.

P.O.R.T.'s Special People

We know what you are going through, so let us help to reduce some of the anxiety and pain you might be experiencing. We have several types of volunteer teams specially designed to help you get through this trying time:
  • Family support volunteers are assigned to one-on-one care with a family for support and friendship.
  • Respite volunteers are available to sit with a child in the hospital so parents can meet with doctors, take time out together, work, attend to other children at home, run errands and tend to other needed tasks.
  • P.O.R.T.’s dads group hosts family-friendly activities throughout the year. These events are planned so that dad can bring all the kids along. The only rule: Leave mom at home.
  • Siblings’ events help siblings feel special, too. Held throughout the year, these events are designed to help families remember that not everyone in the family is sick.

P.O.R.T.'s Special Things

When challenged with a child who is sick, families can use encouragement and little pick-me-ups.
  • P.O.R.T. Care Bags are canvas tote bags filled with a variety of personal care items and snacks, as well as a handmade quilt. These are usually given to families when their child is hospitalized or at the time of diagnosis.
  • Medication coolers are provided to help families keep medications cool during doctor visits. P.O.R.T. provides lightweight coolers for patients undergoing treatment.
  • P.O.R.T.'s inpatient family snack pantry is available to all inpatient families. Located on 7 South, this pantry is stocked with snacks and quick meal items.
  • Phone/gas cards are available to qualifying families who commute from outside the Grand Rapids area.

Contact the P.O.R.T. Program Coordinator 
Phone: 616.267.1159 
colleen.thompson@helendevoschildrens.org