Businesses are being encouraged to support a Yorkshire-based children’s cancer charity to help even more youngsters and their families.
Candlelighters supports patients, parents, siblings, grandparents and any other family members who need financial, practical and emotional help.
Founded in 1976, the charity also supports work and equipment on childrens’ hospital wards and funds research.
The call for more help comes from Leeds’ Absolute Warehouse Services after it donated £3,000 in September and £5,000 towards the charity’s Christmas party celebrations on December 1.
The money covered the cost of the Christmas party venue hire, catering costs, presents and wrapping paper so all the 400-plus children could receive a gift.
Ben Greenwood at Absolute Warehouse Services said: “After seeing first hand the incredible work Candlelighters carries out, we know businesses can make a significant difference to help children and their families at the toughest of times.
“Many businesses want a chosen charity to support and this is definitely worthy of as much help as possible so I would really encourage companies to look into donating, helping with events or becoming a formal partner.
“The work Candlelighters carries out is invaluable and never ending, providing practical and emotional support when it’s needed most.”
Candlelighters’ Head of Family Support, Natalie Kisby, said: “Christmas can add another layer of stress and anxiety to families who are already dealing with the very difficult situation of childhood cancer.
“A lot of families don’t know where they will be over the festive period as some might have children staying in hospital and there’s the added financial impact so we look to do as much as we can to help them.
“The Christmas party is our biggest and most costly event of the year and we are really thankful to Absolute Warehouse Services because without them, it would be virtually impossible to run.
“With their financial support we’ve been able to do the best we can for families.
“The Christmas party event is really important because it allows families to try and relax a little bit while feeling supported alongside people who understand exactly what they’re going through.”
Candlelighters also provides Christmas grants for families to help ease the financial burden.
Throughout the rest of the year, the charity uses funding to research childhood cancer.
It also helps fund holidays and in its ‘The Square’ HQ in Woodhouse Square – just a one-minute walk from Leeds Children’s Hospital – offers families massage, talking therapy and reflexology.
Last November it opened its Candlelighters Cottage to provide accommodation for families with a child who is an inpatient being treated for cancer at Leeds Children’s Hospital.
It helps those who have to travel long distances into Leeds for their child’s treatment, enabling families to stay together at a time when they need it most.