To empower young adults diagnosed with cancer to live and love life.
To build a community of young adults diagnosed with cancer that provides information, support, skills, and opportunity.
These are not just a collection of warm-fuzzy value statements, they represent the combined energy, of heart and mind with which we approach our responsibilities and use as our guide through challenge and triumph.
Hope - We were founded on hope and from an experience that at times appeared to have no hope. Our very existence gives hope to others. We will always remember that our energy and actions can have a profound impact on others and that we all are messengers of hope regardless of our position within the organization or the task we are performing.
Independence - We have always been a financially independent organization with diversified sources of funding, this allows us truly authentic decision making and control over our growth and development ensuring that the needs of young adults with cancer are met in a manner we feel is most effective.
Authentic Connections – We aim to provide the best possible experience for those that deal with us, whether they are young adults using our programs, donors and partners supporting our programs or volunteers helping in any variety of ways. It is paramount these stakeholders have a positive experience and our duty to ensure it.
Integrity – Our every decision and action is guided by our belief in the value of personal and organizational integrity. We do the right thing, no matter what, and take full responsibility for it.
Transparency – We believe we are responsible to appropriately allocate our human and financial resources and to provide an annual operational and financial report to our donors, program partners, the young adults we serve and the community at large.
Courage – We have the fortune to witness courage in action in our connections with survivors from which we draw inspiration to be courageous. Our courage is essential as we meet the massive needs of an under-served population by building YACC and ensuring our life-changing programs serve generations of young Canadians.
To touch more survivors more deeply.
1. Shave for the Brave
2. Partnerships and sponsorships
1. Financial strength and growth
2. Operational excellence/culture and performance measurement
1. Survivors in Action (Engagement)
For more information, click here to download our full strategic plan as a PDF.
Young Adult Cancer Canada was established in 2000 [originally as RealTime Cancer] by Geoff Eaton, after his first cancer challenge. Geoff's vision focused on educating and supporting young adults. At the core of that vision was the belief that cancer, like all of life's challenges, brings with it valuable lessons and experiences. For the first three years of operation, which included a cancer relapse and additional treatment for Geoff, Young Adult Cancer Canada remained focused on the school program and delivery of positive messages to young adults. During a meeting with a mentor on the morning of the 2003 golf tournament, Geoff began a process that would fundamentally change the vision and operations of Young Adult Cancer Canada while keeping the values and beliefs fully intact.
Young Adult Cancer Canada research revealed that over 7,000 young adults were diagnosed in Canada each year, that their survival rates were virtually unchanged since the 1970s and that most importantly there were no readily available and relevant support programs to help young adults with cancer deal with the very unique issues they face. Life is different in your teens, 20s and 30s, just makes sense it's different with cancer too. Young adults with cancer need and deserve an organization wholly focused on providing customized support programs to help them deal with their cancer experience. Given there was not one organization in Canada with this as its focus the vision was obvious; Young Adult Cancer Canada had to be that national cancer organization providing resources for young adults looking for inspiration, information and support.
In February 2004, the RealTime Cancer Community, a web-based peer support tool, was launched; the site shares stories of young adult survivors and supporters and facilitates their connection. With the launch of the site, Young Adult Cancer Canada developed partnerships with cancer centers and community organizations to aid with promotion. The RealTime Cancer Community continues to grow and provide essential positive messages to users of the site.
By late 2004, Young Adult Cancer Canada began to explore the delivery of its first retreat. Retreat Yourself 2005 was hosted in Newfoundland and Labrador, Geoff summarized the event appropriately when saying, "It was the most significant thing we've ever done." As a result of Retreat Yourself promotion, Young Adult Cancer Canada now maintains relationships with cancer partners in every Canadian province and the Retreat Yourself program remains an annual event with participation from patients, survivors and supporters from all regions of Canada.
Today, Young Adult Cancer Canada is focused on the promotion and evolution of its primary programs: Retreat Yourself, Retreat Yourself Adventure, the annual Survivor Conference, Localife, and the web-based community, as well as the continued growth of the organization. Currently, Young Adult Cancer Canada is based in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, with an office team of ten with two more in Halifax; plans for program growth and physical expansion well laid out in the 20011-2016 Strategic Plan approved by the Board of Directors in the fall of 2011.