CoachArt FAQs for Parents of Kids with Chronic Illnesses

 In Our Mission, Parent Resources

CoachArt is a nonprofit organization that offers free music, art, and athletic lessons to children and teens impacted by chronic, physical illnesses. Currently serving families in Los Angeles, San Francisco Bay Area, and San Diego, CoachArt students receive high-quality arts and athletics lessons in 1-on-1 and group settings.

Have questions about CoachArt’s free arts and athletics programs for kids impacted by chronic illness? Watch the Facebook Live video where CoachArt Executive Director, Greg Harrell-Edge, and CoachArt Chief Opportunity Officer, Patricia Suflita Wilson, answer CoachArt FAQs for parents of kids with chronic illnesses.

Live Q&A for Families Impacted by Childhood Chronic Illness


CoachArt FAQs for parents of kids with chronic illnesses


1. Who Can Participate in CoachArt Programs?

CoachArt lessons are for children living with a chronic illness and/or their siblings, ages 5-18. Children must be able to work independently with a volunteer arts or athletics instructors. Siblings may participate in the program even if the chronically ill child in their family does not, and family income is not a consideration for eligibility. Children with behavioral, mental and brain development disorders do not qualify for CoachArt unless they also have an underlying chronic illness.  If you have questions about a child’s eligibility, please contact the CoachArt office or email



CoachArt In Home Lessons are the core of our service model.  Talented volunteer coaches provide high-quality in-home instruction to chronically ill children and their siblings over the course of 8 weeks.  At the end of the 8-week session, CoachArt students can renew their activity or sign up for something new. All lessons and materials are provided at no cost to volunteers or families.


CoachArt student (Sabrina) participating in In Home Painting Lessons with CoachArt volunteer (Mychea)

Some of our most popular lessons include but are not limited to: cooking, baking, piano, guitar, singing, arts and crafts, painting, soccer, baseball, basketball, tennis, yoga, and volleyball.

CoachArt Volunteers: Coaches are volunteers committed to bringing joy to children & teens impacted by chronic illness. All CoachArt coaches have completed an orientation and a background check.

In addition to In Home Lessons, we also have weekly group lessons for CoachArt kids with adapted sports and arts activities led by a team of coaches. CoachArt clubs give kids a safe space to learn and improve their skills with a community of peers who understand and support them.


3. Is There a Cost Associated?

The CoachArt program is completely free for families! All materials needed for the lessons will be provided.


4. What Types of Illnesses Do CoachArt Children Have?

CoachArt children have chronic, physical illnesses and conditions that require ongoing treatment. These are children living with arthritis, cancer, cerebral palsy, diabetes, heart disease, HIV, kidney failure, Spina Bifida, asthma, craniofacial anomalies, and various orthopedic disabilities, among other conditions. Not all chronic illnesses are accompanied by physical symptoms, and many times CoachArt kids look and act just like their healthy siblings. All chronically ill children who participate in our program receive a medical consent from their doctor before participating in any CoachArt lesson so that we can be aware of any special needs or limitations.


5. Can Siblings of a Chronically Ill Child Participate in CoachArt?

Yes. CoachArt understands that childhood chronic illness affects the whole family, including healthy siblings. Siblings of children with chronic illnesses (ages 5-18) are eligible to participate in all CoachArt programs. Parents and guardians can enroll a sibling online here.

Siblings are eligible to participate in all CoachArt arts and athletics programs.

6. Where and When Do CoachArt Lessons Take Place?

CoachArt lessons take place in the communities where children live. In Home Lessons can be a great opportunity for immunocompromised students or for those who would benefit from individual attention. Program Partner Scholarships take place in partnering arts, music, dance or athletic centers. In these locations, CoachArt students can participate with other children without being identified as a patient or sibling. Group Lessons and Clubs take place in community locations depending on the activity.  Each CoachArt lesson is approximately one hour long, and can occur during the week or on weekends. CoachArt requires a guardian to be on-site during the lessons.


7. How Do I Enroll My Child in CoachArt

Step 1: Fill Out a Student Eligibility Form – This process will take about 30 minutes to complete. Each student must complete an online or hard copy application before participating in the program (apply online in English or Spanish). Children with a chronic illness must also have their doctor sign a consent form.

Step 2: Complete a Welcome Call with your Regional Program Manager – Your welcome call will answer any questions that you may have about CoachArt and participating in CoachArt In Home Lessons and Group Activities.

Step 3: Ready to Participate – Your child is now ready to be matched to a volunteer coach and participate in group activities. When we find your child the perfect coach, you’ll receive a match request via text message. Your child’s CoachArt coach will work with you to figure out a schedule that works for everyone.

If your child has been diagnosed with a chronic condition, and you live in one of our service areas – Los Angeles, San Francisco Bay Area, or San Diego – we invite you to fill out a student eligibility form for your child.

CoachArt In Home Lessons for Kids and Teens Impacted by Chronic Illness in California.




Give a "virtual high five" on National High Five Day (Thursday, April 19th), and $5 will be donated to CoachArt!Since 2001, CoachArt has matched volunteer coaches with students for one-on-one or group lessons in arts and athletics. Our vision is that one day every family impacted by chronic illness will be connected to a community of support and an opportunity to learn and grow together.

CoachArt offers free art and athletic lessons to chronically ill children and their siblings between the ages of 5-18 in Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, and San Diego. If your child has been diagnosed with a chronic condition, we invite you to fill out a student eligibility form or get in touch to learn if CoachArt is right for your child.


Do you have an artistic or athletic skill you would like to share with a child impacted by chronic illness? Become a CoachArt Volunteer.

Learn how you can get involved with CoachArt to help kids impacted by chronic illness. Visit

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