Frequently Asked Questions

What is Facing Cancer Together?

The Facing Cancer Together program focuses on how a parental cancer diagnosis affects the entire family. In addition to our in person programming, we provide consultations and a variety of online resources to provide support for the whole family throughout all stages of the cancer experience.

Who qualifies for Facing Cancer Together?

Facing Cancer Together is offered to Minnesota families with children (ages 0-26) who are facing a parental or caregiver cancer diagnosis. Program activities are provided free-of-charge to any local family, including those who do not qualify for Angel Foundation’s Emergency Financial Assistance program.

What do parents learn?

Parenting through cancer can be difficult. Through Facing Cancer Together programming, parents learn how to open up healthy lines of communication with their children; how to talk honestly about their diagnosis; and to be aware of different behaviors that may manifest in their child. Parents are also encouraged to reflect on their own needs, identify reliable self-care techniques, and build a support network through interaction with other families who attend program activities.

What do children learn?

Children learn about cancer in an age-appropriate and hands on way through programs such as Camp Angel, medical play sessions, and family retreats. These activities teach children they cannot “catch” cancer (nor did they cause their parent’s cancer) and that it’s okay to cry. Children benefit from a community of peer support alongside other kids who are going through a similar experience. Through Facing Cancer Together, children see that they do not have to go through the cancer experience alone.

Clinical expertise

Melissa Turgeon, Facing Cancer Together Program Director, has 15 years of clinical experience in pediatric and adult oncology support. As a trained art therapist and Certified Child Life Specialist, her background and experience includes new diagnosis, treatment, coping interventions, maintenance, survivorship, grief and loss.

For further information about Facing Cancer Together program activities, please contact Melissa Turgeon at (612) 627-9000 ext. 507 or mturgeon@mnangel.org.

If you are struggling financially during your cancer treatment, please click here to learn about our Emergency Financial Assistance program.