As we all know, cancer doesn’t happen to just one person, it happens to the whole family and more so when it concerns a child. Everyday families with a sick child must struggle with the realities of cancer which sometimes include leaving a job, staying at home, being isolated, exhausted and, almost always, concerned about about financial issues.
The intensity of the medical treatment for a cure brings additional life altering challenges for the children as they endure the treatment at a time when they are developing physically, emotionally, and intellectually. The reality is that now, as more and more children are surviving cancer, it is increasingly important to financially support these children and their family in order to permit them to achieve complete and long term healing.
The Cole Foundation inaugurated a program of assistance for these families in 2006. Each fall, we approach the Social Services Departments of both Hopital Ste-Justine and the Montreal Childrens’ Hospital to provide to provide funds for families who have a child being treated with leukemia or other cancers. Most of the money is converted into gift cards that can be used to buy groceries or Christmas presents for the families. In addition, some money is used for extraordinary expenses that some families have which may include hydro bills or transportation costs to and from the hospitals. The remaining funds that are donated are used to help these same families throughout the year.