12-Year-Old Cancer Patient Advocates for Hospitalized Kids

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12-Year-Old Cancer Patient Advocates for Hospitalized Kids

Michaeyla Nadeau arrives by limo for a prom for pediatric cancer patients held at Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters. (Courtesy: Michael Nadeau)

Michaeyla (second from right) attends a radiothon held by the Kids as Partners Advocacy Council to raise funds for improvements at Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughers. (Courtesy: Michael Nadeau)

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12-year-old Michaeyla Nadeau helps improve the lives of fellow pediatric patients at @_CHKD: http://bit.ly/2qNFise #DailyPointofLight
Monday, May 22, 2017 - 3:05pm

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"Kids need someone to represent them, someone who will share their voice, and I love being that person!" said Michaeyla Nadeau of Virginia Beach, Virginia, who volunteers as a patient advocate for children with cancer and other illnesses.

Though she is only 12 years old, Michaeyla speaks with the upbeat energy and confidence of a healthy, mature adult. She has been battling osteosarcoma, a form of bone cancer, for two years, spending endless hours undergoing chemotherapy and surgery.  At one point, she was hospitalized for nearly 320 days straight.

"High doses of chemotherapy harm the immune system so she was very susceptible to everything, and every time children with cancer develop a fever of 101.4 or higher, they stay admitted until they are fever free," explained Michael Nadeau, Michaeyla's father. "She would get discharged and go home to see her three younger sisters, and we were right back."

Still, Michaeyla embraces a volunteer position at Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters in Norfolk, Virginia, despite regularly heading back to the hospital for meetings. She’s a charter member of the Kids as Partners Advocacy Council, which seeks ideas to improve life for hospitalized children and teens.

Read the full story on the Points of Light blog.