Spotlight on Cancer

May 17, 2024

For more than 80 years, the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) 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.

The Canadian Society for the Control of Cancer was founded in 1938 as part of a celebration of the 25th anniversary of King 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%.

Collage of images related to Canadian Cancer Society. Their logo is in the middle.

Since the 1940s, the CCS has distributed more than $2 billion in cancer research, investing in thousands of researchers across Canada, and playing an instrumental role in improving the prevention, detection, treatment and survivability of cancer for people across Ontario.

Today, the Canadian Cancer Society is the only charity that addresses and cares for people with every type of cancer. It recently merged with the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation and Prostate Cancer Canada to reduce duplication and strengthen fundraising, advocacy and research efforts as well as provide support for all cancer sufferers through one, combined organization. This support ranges from helping people understand a cancer diagnosis to providing people undergoing treatment with aids (wigs, headwear, breast accessories), to helping people quit smoking.

The Canadian Cancer Society provides a nationwide support system for people with cancer and their family, friends and caregivers. One key CCS program helps organize transportation for people undergoing cancer treatments through services like Air Daffodil, (helps to arrange flights for people in Northern Ontario) and Wheels of Hope (ground transportation).

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 CCS through Federated Health Charities. Learn more about the Canadian Cancer Society and the programs they provide. To make a payroll pledge or donation to support the Canadian Cancer Society and Federated Health Charities, please visit Federated Health Charities.

The Daykin Family Story

When Michael Daykin’s son, Eli, was diagnosed with leukemia, the COVID-19 pandemic was at its peak. Between the countless trips to the hospital, the emotional stress, and the exhausting task of taking care of a sick child, the Daykin family also had to go through the unique experience of maneuvering the healthcare system during lockdown.

Eli went through three rounds of immunotherapy, each lasting 28 days, in addition to multiple rounds of conventional chemotherapy. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, during the 139 days Eli was in treatment, his sister, Katie, was not allowed in the hospital room. Michael drove over 30,000 km in total to and from the BC Children’s hospital in Vancouver, 900km from their hometown of Prince George as the family had decided that Michael needed to be back in Vancouver.

An additional stressor for the family is that Eli has Down syndrome, which puts him at risk for further health complications during treatment. This factor fuels Michael’s passionate support for research.

“People with Down syndrome have a slightly higher risk of leukemia. In 1980, the life expectancy for somebody with Down syndrome was in their 20s. Today it’s in their 60s,” Michael explains. “A lot of that comes back to that cancer treatment. And that research isn’t only improving the outcomes, it’s also shortening the amount of time that somebody needs to be in treatment.”

Amidst all of this, the family needed a break. They got to attend Camp Goodtimes, a medically supervised summer camp program funded by the Canadian Cancer Society.

Camp Goodtimes was not only an incredible place to rest for the Daykin parents, but also provided engaging activities and a supportive community for their children. The Daykin family also felt more relaxed when they were surrounded by people who understood what taking care of someone with cancer was like. “You know parents here are also taking precautions, you know everybody is washing their hands,” Michael says, “The Camp Goodtimes team took great care of us in every regard, and it was just a really good experience. We look forward to going again.”

Federated Health Charities Logo

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Federated Health Charities White Logo

For general questions:

Sarah Wood
Executive Director
437-925-6227
sarah.wood2@ontario.ca

Address

315 Front St. West, 5th Floor
Toronto, ON
M7A 0B8

Federated Health Charities White Logo

For general questions:

Sarah Wood
Executive Director
437-925-6227
sarah.wood2@ontario.ca

Address

315 Front St. West, 5th Floor
Toronto, ON
M7A 0B8

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