This year’s Federated Health Charities campaign runs from April 3, 2023, to June 30, 2023. During the campaign, we will be highlighting each of our 21 charities and how they work to improve the health and well-being of people across our province.
The eighth charity we are spotlighting is the Canadian Cancer Society. For more than 80 years, the Canadian Cancer Society has worked to improve the lives of people affected by cancer through research, advocacy, education and support services for people with cancer, their families, friends and caregivers.
Founded in 1938, the “Canadian Society for the Control of Cancer”, as it was known back then, was initially funded out of the interest from the King George V Silver Jubilee Cancer Fund, which had raised almost $500,000 among Canadians to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the coronation of George V. At the time, the five-year survival rate for people with cancer (i.e. the number of people who lived for five or more years following their diagnosis) was about 25%. Today, the survival rate for Canadians with cancer is about 64%, up from 55% in the early 1990s. For some cancers, like thyroid and testicular cancer, the survival rates are more than 95%.
“That’s the power of research,” said Nancy Yarmel, a senior fundraiser with the Canadian Cancer Society. “Everyone that’s affected by cancer in any community in Canada, is supported through the research that the Canadian Cancer Society assists with.”
Since the 1940s, the Canadian Cancer Society has invested more than $2 billion in cancer research, investing in thousands of researchers across Canada, and has played an instrumental role in improving the prevention, detection, treatment and survivability of cancer for people across Ontario and Canada. Today, the Canadian Cancer Society is the only charity that addresses and cares for people with every type of cancer, and even recently merged with the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation and Prostate Cancer Canada to reduce duplication and strengthen fundraising, advocacy and research efforts and support for people with these cancers through one, combined organization.
“To me, [the Canadian Cancer Society] was, like, the place to go, the place to look for answers, the place to look for resources,” said Claudia, a Canadian Cancer Society client. “And one thing that I really appreciate, all the research and all the interest that they show about all the different aspects of the cancer journey.”
The Canadian Cancer Society provides a nationwide support system for people with cancer and their family, friends and caregivers. Their programs other assistance with everything from understanding a cancer diagnosis to providing people undergoing treatment with wigs, headwear and breast accessories, to helping people quit smoking. In particular, the Canadian Cancer Society helps organize transportation for people undergoing cancer treatments through services like Air Daffodil, which helps to arrange flights and ground transportation for people in Northern Ontario who need to travel 100 km or more to receive cancer treatment. In 2021/22, the Canadian Cancer Society helped more than 4,300 Canadians with transportation to and from their cancer treatments through the Wheels of Hope program.
Ontario’s public servants have supported the Canadian Cancer Society since the 1960s. It was through selling daffodils for the annual Canadian Cancer Society fundraiser that the organization that became Federated Health Charities got its start. Since that time, Ontario provincial employees have donated more than $4 million to the Canadian Cancer Society through Federated Health Charities to unite and inspire Canadians to take control of cancer.
To learn more about the Canadian Cancer Society and the programs they provide, please visit their website the Canadian Cancer Society.To make a payroll pledge or donation to support the Canadian Cancer Society and Federated Health Charities, please visit Federated Health Charities.