BC Cancer Foundation raises funds for BC Cancer to support world-leading scientists and clinicians across the province as they advance global innovation and accelerate access for all British Columbians to cutting-edge cancer care, close to home. Every dollar they raise stays in B.C., advancing breakthroughs and innovation across BC Cancer’s research programs and six world-class centres. We had the chance to speak with Andrew Chan, Executive Director of Development of the BC Cancer Foundation, to find out more about what they do and how can we help.
Describe your charity/non-profit in a few sentences.
The BC Cancer Foundation is the fundraising partner for BC Cancer and the largest philanthropic funder of cancer research in the province. Through the support of our generous donors, we fuel leading research and care at six cancer centres across the province and work to bring world-class cancer care closer to home for all British Columbians.
Our donors help support 80,000 patients each year who depend on BC Cancer.
What problem does it aim to solve?
Cancer is the biggest public health concern of our time, with one in two British Columbians facing diagnoses in their lifetime. As the population ages and grows, cases will only increase over the next decade.
While those living in BC have some of the best cancer outcomes in the world, we know there is still a tremendous amount of work to be done to break down this disease. This requires funding innovative research to develop better treatment and prevention methods. And also bolstering our cancer health care network to deliver these discoveries to every corner of the province.
When did you start/join it?
I joined the team at the start of 2022, having previously worked in raising funds for education programs, international development, and mental health & homelessness.
What made you want to get involved?
Cancer is something that affects everyone, myself included. In the past several years, many of my family members and friends faced cancer diagnoses – a scary prospect against the backdrop of a global pandemic. Hearing about the quality of care at BC Cancer motivated me to get involved, knowing we would do our utmost to bring the best quality of life and support to anyone facing a diagnosis.
What was the situation like when you started?
I joined the Foundation at a time when support for cancer was at its highest level. It seems like the pandemic heightened the public’s awareness and concern for healthcare and we are more motivated than ever to break down cancer.
How has it changed since?
We have taken the strong momentum from the past year and channelled it into a historic campaign to break down cancer in BC. We continue to see world-class breakthroughs and advancements from our teams and know that now more than ever, we need to invest in the future.
The Foundation recently launched a historic $500 million Beyond Belief fundraising campaign, which aims to transform cancer research and care for all British Columbians. It’s the most ambitious and comprehensive health campaign in the history of the province. A future free from cancer is closer than it has ever been. This will help us get there. We know we can’t afford to take breaks, so everyone at the BC Cancer Foundation remains driven to support the great work of BC Cancer.
What more needs to be done?
So much. In the same way that we saw the world come together during the onset of the pandemic, we can do the same, and continue driving forward together as a society to tackle the challenge of cancer. We can continue to raise awareness, funds, and support in honour of those who passed before us and to provide a better future for those to come.
We need to provide the resources for scientists and clinicians at BC Cancer to advance innovative research; attract world-class cancer experts to B.C.; to bring cancer care closer to home for all British Columbians.
How can our readers help?
Join us! Help us fuel a future that is free of cancer – a future that we hope to see very soon. Connect and listen to those in your life who have gone through or are currently on their cancer journey. Support them, encourage them, and then help us continue to inspire hope for everyone across the province.
You can also support through donations of any amount, fundraising or sharing your own story.
We’re in this together and are thankful for all your support!
Do you have any events coming up?
There are a number of exciting events benefiting the BC Cancer Foundation taking place this fall. To learn more visit our website.
Where can we follow you?
You can also read about the latest breakthroughs and news on our website.
Or learn more about our exciting Beyond Belief campaign and what it means for cancer care in B.C.
PAY IT FORWARD: What is an awesome local charity that you love?