Stories about: Health & Wellness

26.2 for three: A transplant nurse’s tribute to her patients

pediatric transplant
Desh and Lucas

Heartbreak Hill: It’s the notorious Boston Marathon landmark that runners both anticipate and dread. But when Deshanthi “Desh” Perera approaches that challenging climb on April 16, she’ll have special motivation propelling her uphill. Perera, a nurse working on the organ transplant inpatient unit of the Pediatric Transplant Center at Boston Children’s Hospital and first-time marathoner, isn’t just running for the glory of a personal best time or the satisfaction of completing the race. She’s running for all of the remarkable patients at Boston Children’s, including three of her own.

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Boston Children’s Collaboration for Community Health helps families thrive

shari nethersole, md
Dr. Shari Nethersole speaks at a community meeting.

Justin’s mom grabs him a fast food dinner because the nearest supermarket is two bus rides away. Mia is afraid to play outside because there was a recent shooting in her neighborhood. Janelle’s parents have trouble covering all their expenses each month and are worried the family will be evicted from their apartment. These scenarios are stressful for families in the short term, but they can also have lasting effects on health and well-being. Without access to affordable, fresh foods, stable housing and other supportive resources, families may struggle to provide the environment that both parents and kids need to thrive in the long term. “Good health depends on much more than access to healthcare,” explains Dr. Shari Nethersole, Executive Director for Community Health at Boston Children’s Hospital. “Housing, education, safety, access to food and physical activity all have a major influence on health and longevity.”

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Beyond the birds and the bees: What children really need to hear from their parents

Mother and teen daughter hugWhen most parents think about talking to their kids about sex, it makes them very uncomfortable. It’s not exactly easy to discuss the specifics of how babies are made — especially when you are hoping that your kid doesn’t have sex until they are, well, much older. Which makes you not want to discuss it with them until they are, well, much older.

The problem is that kids need to have conversations with their parents about sex and sexuality earlier rather than later, certainly by middle school.

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The founder, a parent and a patient: Three yogis who are giving back

Yoga family
Anabelle, Bill and Jaime MacDonald

Yoga instructors and practitioners from New England and around the globe come together every year for Yoga Reaches Out. The day-long gathering inspires and unites participants in a day of selfless service or “seva” benefitting families and children.

Now in its eighth year, Yoga Reaches Out has donated over 1.3 million dollars to help fund Boston Children’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), the Heart Center, leukemia research, autism research, a playground, key research and the Wellness Program. Offering free services like yoga and meditation, The Wellness Program is a place for families to gain the strength, resilience and hope they need as their children go through the toughest tests of their young lives.

Read the stories of three yogis giving back this year.

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