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Connecting Families

Candlelighters was started in 1977 from a desire to connect families. Now, 45 years later, that passion is still at the heart of what we do and how we serve.

Our vision for fostering transformational, lifelong relationships begins with supporting the entire family as they face childhood cancer together—from diagnosis through treatment and beyond—and embracing them into a community that understands what they’re going through.

No matter where you are in your journey, we are here for and with you.

Candlelighters Family Camp

 

Family Camp 2022
Candlelighters In-Person Family Camp – Back and Better Than Ever in 2022!

What is Candlelighters Family Camp? A three-day getaway at Camp Harlow for families facing pediatric cancer. Over the 2022 Labor Day weekend, 35 Candlelighters families gathered to connect with friends old and new. We enjoyed  horseback riding, zip-lining, swimming, riding go-karts and bumper boats, campfire movies, getting creative in art workshops, and getting in-depth support in breakout sessions. The biggest complaint – so much to do and not enough time to do it in, or as one family said, when asked how camp could improve, “More time. But how is that possible?” 

“The Candlelighters staff, volunteers, and camp staff were above and beyond amazing. We can’t thank you enough. Seeing my little girl that happy and free was everything. We all agreed it was the best weekend we’ve had since her diagnosis and can’t wait to come back. Thank you for all your hard work and time.” – Camp 2022 attendee 

About Candlelighters Family Camp

Since 1995, every Labor Day weekend we have hosted Family Camp in Eugene, OR for all Candlelighters family members. These three incredible days are filled with laughter, play, connecting, love, and healing.

Our families come together and get the opportunity to experience the magic of Family Camp while horseback riding, zip-lining, swimming, riding go-karts and bumper boats, attending campfires, and so much more! This is a weekend for families to come together and create lifelong memories.

Candlelighters Family Camp is offered to children diagnosed with cancer and their families. Attendance is 100% free of charge, ensuring that all families who are interested in having the Family Camp experience can participate regardless of socioeconomic status or trying to balance medical bills during treatment.

What makes Candlelighters Family Camp unique is that the experience is for the entire family. Parents, siblings, and even the child living with cancer enjoy a weekend where the worries of treatments and associated struggles are left behind.

Family Camp 2022 Memories

Youth Programs

The Luminaries is Candlelighters’ youth and young adult program whose focus is on increasing positive social interactions among youth while building leadership skills. The Luminaries’ mission is to provide spaces for kids and young adults who have experienced cancer and their youth siblings to connect, grow, and support one another through social connections and projects.

Learn more about one of our Luminaries leaders, Garrett, and how joining The Luminaries opened up a new world for him after his diagnosis at 16. And watch Sierra’s dance to “Warrior”—a beautiful interpretation of her cancer journey. You can also check out the Luminaries playlist on YouTube.

The Luminaries program is open to anyone that has been diagnosed with cancer—or their sibling—and is aged 13–21. Due to the current environment of COVID-19, the Luminaries are currently meeting online to chat and discuss future projects. Email Lisa for information on how to join!

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Parent & Caregiver Support Group

Connecting with other parents and caregivers who understand having a child diagnosed with cancer can be incredibly helpful. Join our online support group meetings, facilitated by Dr. Marianne Kabour.

This will be a chance to meet other parents and caregivers so that you can share your thoughts, stories, and concerns related to childhood cancer. If there’s a specific topic you would like to address, please send it to Lisa ahead of time.

Next Meeting

Wednesday, December 7, 2022
5:45 p.m.

Parent & Caregiver Support Group Sign-Up

These online support groups are hosted by Candlelighters, and moderated by Dr. Marianne Kabour. We meet on Zoom the first Wednesday of each month at 5:45 p.m. We will email you the Zoom link in advance.

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Candlelighters Community

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Grupos de apoyo en español para parientes y cuidadores

Conéctate con otros parientes y cuidadores que entienden como es tener un hijo diagnosticado con cáncer.

Ofrecemos una serie de grupos de apoyo en español por Zoom el último viernes de cada mes a las 5:30 p.m. El grupo es facilitado por Maria Leija Briones, Asociado de LPC, de Barcelona Counseling.

El grupo es una oportunidad para conocer a otros padres y cuidadores para que puedan compartir sus pensamientos, historias y preocupaciones relacionadas con el cáncer infantil.

La próxima junta

Nuestra próxima junta es viernes, 30 de Diciembre en Zoom.​
5:30 p.m.

Inscríbete a los grupos de apoyo

Estos grupos de apoyo en línea están organizados por Candlelighters y moderados por Maria Leija Briones, Asociado de LPC, de Barcelona Counseling. Nos reunimos en Zoom el último viernes de cada mes a las 5:30 p.m. Le enviaremos por correo electrónico el enlace de Zoom después de recibir su información.

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Bereavement Support Group

Candlelighters is here for families throughout the journey of childhood cancer, and that includes a consistent, safe space of support for those who have lost a child to pediatric cancer. Meeting and getting to know other families experiencing the same kind of grief offers strength and healing through community.

Starting in July 2022, bereaved parents and caregivers have a dedicated bereavement support group. Please join us to connect with other families and talk about different monthly topics.

Next Meeting

Tuesday, December 20, 2022
5:45 p.m.

Bereavement Support Group Sign-Up

Our support groups are supportive conversations to participate in and connect with other bereaved parents, and are facilitated by Dr. Marianne Kabour from Randall Children’s Hospital. Each month, we will email out a topic in advance to talk about during group. We meet on Zoom the third Tuesday of each month at 5:45 p.m. We will email you the Zoom link in advance.

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Bereavement

We understand that the pain and grief of losing a child are unimaginable. You are not alone.

Candlelighters now hosts a monthly online Bereavement Support Group the third Tuesday of each month. Candlelighters also offers two opportunities during the year for bereaved families to gather for a time of remembrance and to connect with others who are walking a similar path.

Additionally, bereaved families are always welcome to attend all Candlelighters family activities. Meeting and getting to know other families experiencing the same kind of grief offers strength and healing through community.

We also help with funeral costs. If you are newly bereaved, please ask your social worker for assistance requesting funds.

For additional information, please email Lisa or give her a call at 503-719-4244. You can also join our private Candlelighters Bereavement Community Group on Facebook.

Bereavement Events

Monthly Online Support Group

Candlelighters is here for families throughout the journey of childhood cancer, and that includes a consistent, safe space of support for those who have lost a child to pediatric cancer. Meeting and getting to know other families experiencing the same kind of grief offers strength and healing through community.

Our support groups are supportive conversations to participate in and connect with other bereaved parents, and are facilitated by Dr. Marianne Kabour from Randall Children’s Hospital.

Click here to RSVP.

Annual Bereavement Events

Candlelighters also offers two opportunities during the year for bereaved families to gather for a time of remembrance and to connect with others who are walking a similar path.

Time of Remembrance is our winter event for  bereaved families. This year, we’ll gather at Edgefield on December 17. We hope you can join us for food, music, and crafts in memory and celebration of our children who have passed.

Saturday, December 17th
11 am- 1:30 pm.
McMenamins Edgefield ballroom
2126 SW Halsey St, Troutdale, OR 97060, USA

RSVP here by November 5, as space is limited

Please sign up for our Family Connections newsletter to be notified of upcoming bereavement events, or contact Lisa for more information.

Funeral Fund Assistance

We understand that when a child passes away, the focus should be on the family and not the bills associated with such a loss. Candlelighters offers a one time Emergency Funeral Financial Assistance, up to $500.00, to help ease the burden.

Please ask your social worker for assistance with requesting funds from Candlelighters.

Bereavement Resources

We have compiled the following resources—including support groups, bereavement camps, and educational materials—that we hope will be a help to your entire family during your journey with grief and bereavement:

Grief & Bereavement Support Resources by Location

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Your Family’s Story

Every childhood cancer story is unique, and we want to learn more about yours!

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