Where Does Your Money Go When You Donate to Family Reach?

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Photo: Brendon and his mom captured by Amy Buelow

Brendon, 2, rhabdomyosarcoma by Amy Buelow

When donating to nonprofits, the who, what, when, where, why, and how questions are likely swirling through your mind when choosing which organizations you want to support. What do they do? Who do they help? How do they help them?

And, most importantly, where does your money go if you decide to make a donation?

When you add Family Reach to your giving list, the short answer is that your money provides financial support to families facing cancer. Keep reading for more details!

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1. Basic needs for families facing cancer

Your donation helps cancer patients and their families afford basic needs while going through treatment. This includes:

  • Food: Cover groceries and other food costs so families have warm and nutritious food on the table.
  • Transportation: Pay for full tanks, parking fees, and other costs to ensure safe travel to treatment.
  • Utilities: Keep the lights, heating, air conditioning, water, WiFi, and other necessities up and running.
  • Housing: Ensure the mortgage or rent is paid so families can stay in their homes during treatment and beyond.

Family Reach distributes this financial support through checks. Sometimes the checks are sent straight to the family, though we also send money directly to landlords, utility companies, and other service providers for ease and timeliness.

If a family can’t meet their basic needs, cancer treatment is going to take a back seat. By covering these essential, non-medical costs, you’re helping cancer patients access life-saving care.

2. One-on-one support for cancer patients and their families

In addition to helping families afford basic needs, your donation funds the support we provide through resource navigation.

Our trained Resource Navigators provide personalized resource recommendations to help families with unemployment, insurance, food, and other critical needs. They’re also there to listen and let patients and caregivers know they’re not alone, especially as many of them have a social work background.

For the families we serve, this compassionate support is an uplifting experience:

  • “Our concerns were heard, paid attention to, and felt deeply by everyone we spoke to.”
  • “People actually talk to you. You’re not just a number, you’re a person who happens to have cancer.”
  • “I literally slept better at night.”1

What’s more, your support funds our community outreach to achieve cancer equity through financial interventions. This includes providing on-site support and building partnerships with local organizations to reach Black and Hispanic/Latino families through trusted providers.

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3. Platforms and systems for delivering our programs

Our wonderful staff and backend systems are critical for reaching families with financial support.

Your donation makes it possible to keep this well-oiled machine running so funds get into the hands of patients and their families. It takes lots of energy and resources to manage relationships with over 1,045 cancer treatment centers, distribute free guidebooks across the country, and support thousands of families each year.

Plus, your support fuels program innovations so that we can keep improving how we support people with cancer. Fueling this growth is also one of the benefits of donating to nonprofits every month through recurring giving programs.

Your generous support is the engine that powers Family Reach as we support families and grow our impact. We couldn’t do this without you!

Editor’s Note: Updated October 2023

Help families facing cancer this holiday season. Make a donation today!



  1. Family Reach Patient Impact Survey, 2021.
Mary Corcoran Headshot
Mary Corcoran
Content & Storytelling Coordinator • Family Reach Team

As Communications Coordinator, Mary creates and promotes content that spreads the word about Family Reach’s mission. Mary brings her love of storytelling to her work, and a commitment to a world where socioeconomic status doesn’t determine chances of survival.

Read more from Mary Corcoran.

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