Photo © Courtesy of Nankind
A dark shadow with a harrowing impact on families, cancer is a journey no one should face alone. Nankind, formerly known as the Nanny Angel Network, makes sure that no one has to.
In 2009, Audrey Guth, a mother in the midst of her own cancer journey, realized the burden that many parents with cancer face, juggling being a parent and patient. It was during a chance encounter with another mother and her child in a waiting room that Guth identified a significant gap in cancer care—the need to provide support not just to patients but to their children as well.
She founded Nanny Angel Network, giving respite to moms with cancer. Since then, she has made it her mission to innovate and lessen the social and emotional impact of cancer on families by providing free support to mothers, fathers, and primary caregivers with cancer.
“Nankind played one of the biggest roles during my cancer journey,” shared Bipina, a Nankind mom. “When I could not cook, they delivered delicious meals and would check in on me. They also provided a volunteer to help my son understand what was happening, giving me time to rest and recover. People were there sometimes, but Nankind was there all the time.”
The Nankind Effect
The devastating effects of cancer extend beyond the patient—a fact that Guth knows all too well. Coping with a parent’s cancer diagnosis is emotionally challenging for kids, and addressing their needs can often be overlooked in the whirlwind of treatments and caregiving.
Nanny Angel Network has since evolved to Nankind, providing critical intervention to children experiencing the trauma of parental cancer. The impact is incredible: through free support programs, Nankind has provided 30,000 hours of free childcare and 60,000 nutritious meals, empowering over 4,000 children in the process. An invaluable resource for parents and families battling cancer, Nankind has transformed the cancer experience for over 2,000 families. One family at a time, Nankind has built a community of volunteer angels, referral partners, and sponsors that provide free supportive cancer care to families.
Throughout a parent’s cancer journey, from diagnosis through bereavement, Nankind’s community of Volunteer Angels gives children the tools to understand their parents’ cancer and build lifelong emotional resilience. Instead of being faced with the choice between getting the care they need or caring for their children, Nankind parents get the peace of mind they need to rest and recover, knowing their kids will be supported.
“Volunteering with Nankind allows me to connect with an amazing family and support them when it’s needed most,” said Shawna, a Nankind Volunteer Angel. “The relationships you build are so special, and it’s very rewarding to be able to do a small part in lessening the impact of cancer on the family.”
October is recognized worldwide as Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a time dedicated to raising awareness about the most common cancer affecting women globally. This month is a powerful reminder of the importance of early detection, support, and research in the fight against breast cancer. During this month, it’s more important than ever to emphasize the need for comprehensive support for families affected by breast cancer and all forms of this disease. Nankind makes that support possible, and you can help take it further.
Two in five Canadians are expected to develop cancer during their lifetime, and no one should go through it alone. Together, we can be a part of a world where no parent with cancer faces this journey alone, and every child receives the support they need to thrive.
To learn more and get involved, visit Nankind.com/give today.
To date Nankind has supported 1,750+ families, provided 35,000+ meals and empowered 3,200+ children to build emotional resilience.