Every year in Canada about 1500 children are diagnosed with cancer and about 700 will die from the disease.
Dealing with the childhood cancer journey can be financially draining for families. It's not unusual for parents to have to cease working or to take extended leaves in order to be with their child. And for some families, tragically, they must deal with the emotional trauma and financial burden of dealing with the final arrangements for their beloved son or daughter.
Childhood Cancer Canada, through its Benevolent Fund, steps in to help financially struggling families in their time of need. The Foundation will pay up to $1,000 to the family's funeral services provider to assist with the costs of the final arrangements and related memorial service. Requests for such financial assistance are received daily from hospitals, attending physicians and care givers from across Canada who turn to the Foundation, hoping we can help ease the pain of their families, at least in this small way.
"When a family suffers the terrible trauma of losing a child to cancer, we want to be there to help, particularly in cases of financial hardship."
Families cannot apply directly to the Foundation for financial assistance. The request must come from a caregiver or third party who can attest to the need for support.
Interlink nurses (Ontario), treatment centre social workers, Parent Support Group leaders or other supporters or caregivers may refer families in need of financial support. The referral is made by forwarding a letter outlining a brief history of the child's illness and the family's financial situation by fax to the Foundation. The Chief Executive Officer reviews all applications to ensure that the information meets the financial assistance requirements. The approved file is forwarded to the accountant. Upon receipt of an invoice or copy of the funeral service contract, from the cemetery or funeral home (made out to the family - an invoice made out to Childhood Cancer Foundation will not be accepted) Childhood Cancer Canada will pay up to $1,000 toward the balance owed or toward the amount already paid by the family. If the bill is less than $1,000, Childhood Cancer Canada will pay the full amount. Childhood Cancer Canada does not contact the funeral home or the family. The accountant maintains all files with regard to this program..