Cancer Fund for Children receives Co-op Foundation Grant

 In News

We are delighted to share the news that we have received a grant of £20,000 from Co-op Foundation to help young people support each other during bereavement.

We will use the funding to work with children and young people who have either lost a parent or sibling to cancer, enabling them to become peer advocates and to campaign for change.

Co-op Foundation is Co-op’s charity. It helps people challenge inequality and co-operate for change so they can share a fairer future.

The Foundation has partnered with Co-op Funeralcare to launch the grants as part of a £3m extension to its #iwill Fund.

The #iwill Fund is a £50 million joint investment from the National Lottery Community Fund, using National Lottery funding, and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to support young people to access high quality social action opportunities. The Co-op Foundation acts as a match funder.

The Foundation has already awarded over £3m in grants since it first partnered with the #iwill Fund in 2017.

Findings from Co-op Funeralcare’s ‘biggest ever survey’ into death, dying, and bereavement* found that young people are most likely to bottle up their feelings and be excluded from social arrangements when experiencing bereavement.

The funding will allow organisations like Cancer Fund for Children to run projects to help young people experiencing the challenges of bereavement through peer support.

Neil Symington, Cancer Fund for Children’s Community Services Manager, said:

“We are hugely appreciative of Co-op Foundation’s #iwillFund, firstly for investing in children and young people who have been bereaved through cancer and secondly for supporting them to become leaders, campaigners, and advocates.

“We understand the devastating impact a bereavement has on young people. Given the right support, the right environment and the right time, their experiences have the opportunity to be heard. Young people are at the heart of this project.  By telling their story they will support their peers to share their own experiences and by sharing their insight they will campaign for change in how other young people who have been bereaved are treated.  This project will be shaped and led by young people including identifying what changes need to be made to ensure they are better supported following the death of a sibling or parent to cancer.”

Jamie Ward-Smith, Chair of Co-op Foundation, added:

“Our partnership with the #iwill Fund over the past three years has shown the positive impact young people can have when they are given opportunities to take action on the issues they care about. Losing a close friend or family member is difficult at any age, and it can be particularly tough for young people who might be dealing with other pressures at home, at school or in their social lives.

“Grants announced today will empower young people to help others going through similar experiences to build their confidence, skills and sense of belonging. And by recommending how others can support bereaved young people better, they can make a long-term difference for their peers.”

Sam Tyrer, Managing Director at Co-op Funeralcare said:

“At Co-op Funeralcare, we understand how experiencing a bereavement can have a major impact on the life of an individual, and this is even more pronounced when it happens at a young age.

“Bereavement is unique to every person, and everyone chooses to deal with the loss of a loved one in different ways. It’s a long process, but the long-term support of others is essential when trying to overcome the hurdles grief entails. Co-op Funeralcare has seen first-hand the importance of support groups within the community and we are honoured to be part of this crucial initiative.”

Cancer Fund for Children supports children and young people (age 0-24) diagnsoed with cancer, their siblings and also young  people struggling to cope with their parent’s cancer. Find out more about how we support we provide here.
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