Chapter 1: BACK STORY

The Big Book of Care is one great, big, growing story of individuals and organizations that care about children with cancer and decided to unite and work as one during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. This national initiative includes 17 children’s cancer groups from across Canada and we are committed to working together to help children with cancer.

The story of childhood cancer in Canada today is that 10,000 kids are currently battling the disease. For most Canadian children, the story is relatively happy because 82% of kids diagnosed survive.

Unfortunately, the story rarely ends there.

Childhood cancer stalks most young people the rest of their lives. An estimated 30,000 survivors of childhood cancer are living in Canada today. Sadly, about 21,000 of these survivors are living with permanent, and sometimes debilitating, side-effects from the cancer treatments they received as children. These long-term health problems are hurting the survivors and their families and they are taking their toll on our health care system.

And, this says nothing of the children who die of the disease.

Each September, children’s cancer groups from across North America dedicate the month to raising funds and awareness for these kids, but resources are tight and marketing efforts are isolated, resulting in little or no impact.

So we asked ourselves: What if there was a different way? What if children’s cancer groups across Canada could unite and work as one? What if we joined forces and shared our big ideas, scarce resources and bold efforts? Could we actually do more together than we could alone? Could we put the story of childhood cancer on the map for all to see and hear?

The Big Book of Care is our big, bold, collective answer to these questions. It is our great big commitment to unite for the benefit of children with cancer.

Together, we reached out and shared our ideas and our story with big, important organizations like Shaw Communications, Global TV, William Joseph Communications, Pattison Outdoor Advertising, Corus Radio and Sears Canada. They responded with generous in-kind support to help us share our story. Now, with their help, we’re reaching out to you.

Our hope is that you will hear the stories of childhood cancer that are unfolding in Canada right now. That every Canadian will hear these stories and that every Canadian will realize that it is within their power to help change the outcome of childhood cancer.

At the Big Book of Care, we know we can change the story of childhood cancer. By sharing their stories of courage and hope with you, we hope these stories will inspire you to take action—whether that means sharing the stories you encounter here, giving to a children’s cancer charity or hugging your own children and sharing your love and appreciation on social media. Every story and every action counts.