Moon Balloon

"Cancer takes your family on a journey that you didn't necessarily plan for. The HCC program has ensured, through opening communication lines with my children, that I don't take the unplanned journey alone, but rather with my family right by my side."
- D.I., Survivor and Parent

girl reading book

Books used in our program

The Moon BalloonThe Moon Balloon:
A Journey of Hope and Discovery for Children and Families

Author and Illustrator: Joan Drescher
Publisher: The Moon Balloon Project, Inc., 2005



The Hope TreeThe Hope Tree: Kids Talk About Breast Cancer

By Laura Joffe Numeroff. Illustrated by David McPhail.

Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. 2001

This picture book is organized as the support group scrapbook for school-aged children of moms with breast cancer. A wide range of names and ages, as well as animal narrators will enable all children to identify with the content. Each double paged spread focuses on one concern, such as "the day my family found out" or "you can't catch it". In addition to outlining what to expect, each vignette suggests a course of action that will help the child gain a sense of control and hope.

The book is available for purchase, or as a free pdf file to download onto a computer.

Books for Parents and Caregivers

Can I Still Kiss You?: Answering Your Children’s Questions About Cancer

By Neil Russell

Health Communications, Deerfield Beach, Fl. 2001

Short yet hard hitting, the book is based on actual questions from children with superb answers. Examples: What will happen to me if you die? Why are you angry at me so often? All you ever seem to do is sleep. Space is provided to personalize answers and add questions from your family. It will change the way you think about communicating with your children.

Cancer in The Family: Helping Children Cope with a Parent's Illness

By Sue Heiney, Joan Hermann, Katherine Bruss, Joy Fincannon.
American Cancer Society. Hatherleigh Press, Ltd. 2001

Extensively researched and written by a team of psycho-social professionals, this book includes developmental information about children, what to say and how to say it at every stage of the cancer journey, as well as advice for the ill parent. Setting it apart are the chapters on “Time After Treatment;” a removable section, containing reproducible activities for children, and a superbly annotated Resource Guide. Highly recommended for adults.

Couples Confronting Cancer: Keeping Your Relationship Strong

By Joy L. Fincannon and Katherine V. Bruss

American Cancer Society 2003

This book offers information on how to cope with the demands that cancer can put on a relationship; how to deal with the problems it can cause; and how to resolve, even prevent, those problems. Offers hands-on-tools to help partners become closer and to communicate more easily.

Helping Your Children Cope with Your Cancer: A Guide for Parents and Families

By Peter Van Dernoot.

Hatherleigh Press, Ltd. 2006

This book includes real-life stories and experiences of over twenty parents who have been diagnosed with cancer. They share their fears and hopes as they provide the reader with advice, guidance and inspiration. Includes stories from parents and advice from professional counselors.

How to Help Children Through a Parent's Serious Illness

By Kathleen McCue and Ron Bonn.

St. Martin’s Press.1996

McCue's philosophy is that children are able to stretch their abilities to new and unexpected levels in the face of a family problem. Her book guides adults from the moment of diagnosis through death and its aftermath. Anecdotes, advise, and summaries are included in every chapter. Thorough, reassuring and highly recommended.

Raising an Emotionally Healthy Child when a Parent is Sick

By Paula Rausch, M.D., Anna Muriel, MD., M.P.H.

McGraw Hill. 2006

This book helps parents understand their child's stage of development, temperament, emotions and possible reactions at a difficult time. It also helps support parents as they encourage and foster their child's resiliency, emotional health and well-being.


Share the Care

By Cappy Caposella and Sheila Warnock

Simon and Schuster. 2004

This book offers guidelines, suggestions, and a simple-to-use workbook section on how to turn a group of helpful individuals (friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, etc.) into a care-giving circle of support.


When a Parent has Cancer: A Guide to Caring for Your Children

By Wendy Schlessel Harpham

Harper Collins. 2004

A physician and cancer survivor provides practical advice on caring for children of all ages during diagnosis and treatment. This book includes a companion book for children, "Becky and the Worry Cup".