Season’s Greetings to You!

L to R: Cancer survivor Julianna Leone, pictured with CCSN President and CEO Jackie Manthorne, and her father Reno Leone, who is also a cancer survivor.  

Being diagnosed with cancer is something no one wants to hear. Cancer presents many different challenges, complicating factors, and concerns for patients and their caregivers. There are approximately 1,000,000 Canadians who are survivors of cancer for more than 10 years – a figure that reflects just how many Canadians have been diagnosed with cancer, which has risen to nearly one-in-two.

This statistic means there’s an after-cancer life for so many Canadians, but what does the future of cancer survivorship look like, and how will survivors live their lives? Lifelong medications are expensive, fear of recurrence is pervasive, and financial impact can be long-lasting – what can we do about it?

CCSN is asking: as a nation, is Canada doing everything it can to find cancer cures, improve care prevention, and provide equal access and support to the best available care? These questions are important for those who have already experienced a diagnosis, as well as for those who will face diagnosis in the future. After treatment is over, what support can patients and caregivers expect to access in order for them to carry on leading normal and happy lives? Additionally, what can patients and survivors do if their cancer comes back?

Canadian Cancer Survivor Network continues to provide a voice for cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers. Our network ensures policy makers understand life after cancer, and garners support for initiatives such as shorter wait times between diagnosis and treatment, a shorter process of cancer medication approval, and alleviating the financial after-effects of cancer. The importance of having a network that provides a voice for survivors, is an extremely important resource for so many people across our country.

Just last week, cancer survivors and patient advocates Julianna Leone and Reno Leone – shown in the photo above – recently had the opportunity to meet with Terence Kernaghan, MPP of London North Centre. During their meeting, Julianna and her father Reno were able to share their personal stories about their journeys with cancer, and were able to contribute some of their ideas to MPP Terence Kernaghan, on how provincial government can continue to support cancer patients and survivors.

In addition to meeting with MPP Terence Kernaghan, Julianna and her father – along with many more cancer survivors who were present, were able to meet with MPPs, healthcare decision making stakeholders, and CCSN partners who attended last week’s Legislative Reception at Queen’s Park. To sum up Julianna’s experience with sharing her story, and meeting with provincial decision makers, Juliana shared “It’s an honour to be part of such an amazing organization! The legislative reception I attended was fantastic, and I found meeting with MPPs to be such an important experience for me to have as a survivor. I have to say Canadian Cancer Survivor Network outdid themselves. It was by far the largest turnout I’ve seen to date – and I know without a doubt, support will continue to grow!”

Leone also shared “Cancer does not discriminate, and one-in-two Canadians will be affected by the disease. Cancer patients, survivors and caregivers are extremely fortunate to have CCSN sharing such dignified awareness about this deadly disease. And, in order for CCSN to continue promoting health for such a large percentage of Canadians, I urge you to think about supporting this great cause.”

Please make the decision to give today. No donation is too small, and every single dollar raised makes a difference – this means your donation will positively impact the lives of cancer patients, survivors, and their caregivers. All donations received on, or before December 31st, 2019 are eligible for a tax receipt. Additionally, donations make an excellent gift for friends, family members, and loved ones on your holiday shopping list. We’re grateful for your support of our organization, and we sincerely thank you for considering us in your holiday giving. I would like to take this moment to wish you and your family a warm and safe holiday season.

Happy Holidays,

Jackie Manthorne
President and CEO
Canadian Cancer Survivor Network