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Good afternoon blessed family here is another great reason why we encourage you to call in right now to our Praise 92.1 Cares for St. Jude Kids Radiothon 2011 at 1-800-411-9898 and become a “Partner in HOPE” for just $20.00 a month.

During March, the country celebrates Social Work Month, Child Life Month and National Nutrition Month. At St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, social workers, child life specialists and clinical nutritionists play integral roles in the treatment of young patients with cancer and other catastrophic diseases.

Social workers work closely with patients and their families to help them cope with the inevitable changes that come with battling serious illness. All patients admitted for active treatment are assigned to a social worker who is available to help them and their family throughout their diagnosis, treatment and follow-up care.

“The children are the reward,” said social worker Beverly Esposito. “It is a wonderful experience that involves all kinds of therapeutic work ranging from crisis intervention and case management to group work. It’s a unique job, and it’s very rewarding.”

Clinical Nutrition staff members provide nutrition care for St. Jude patients, coordinating individual responses to each patient’s nutritional needs.

“At St. Jude, the dietitian is involved in the patient’s care from diagnosis throughout continuation of therapy and after they complete their treatment,” said Karen Smith of Clinical Nutrition. “Dietitians at the hospital are challenged not only to assure optimal nutrition for each patient but to also work with the medical team to advocate for adequate growth and development as a child with a catastrophic disease. As the nutrition expert, the dietitian is the resource for all aspects of medical nutritional therapy, wellness, sports nutrition, disease intervention, diabetes and other chronic diseases.”

The Child Life program at St. Jude strives to minimize the stress and anxiety that many kids have when they stay in the hospital. Child Life specialists work with patients and families in all patient care areas.

“We’re not necessarily making the hospital setting normal, but we’re trying to create an atmosphere that is as normal as possible,” said Child Life specialist Jennifer Smith. “We are providing play areas, activities—things that they would be doing at home. We focus on them and try to bring out the special, unique things about them that maybe would be happening at home, at church or at school.”

To learn more about the Social Work, Child Life and Clinical Nutrition programs, refer to the related topics box on the St. Jude website. at