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Hospital  >  Care Programs  >  Odette Cancer Program  >  Patient & family education  >  Talking to your children about cancer pathfinder

Talking to your children about cancer pathfinder

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Canadian Cancer Society

National Cancer Institute (US-based)

American Cancer Society (US-based)

American Society of Clinical Oncology (US-based)
Click on Talking with Teens About Cancer or Talking with Children about Cancer.

Macmillan Cancer Support (UK-based)

Canadian Virtual Hospice
Type “children” in the search bar.

Andrea Warnick

videosVideos and podcasts


When a Parent Has Cancer (University Health Network)
Type “When a Parent Has Cancer” in the search bar.

Talking with your children about cancer (The Peter Gilgan Centre for Women’s Cancers)
Download the PDF for "Talking with your children about cancer." 

Talking with Children About Cancer (Lakeridge Health)

booksBooks and articles

You can borrow these books from the Odette Cancer Centre / Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. 
Visit the PEARL Library (T-wing, 1st floor, by main reception) or call 416.480.4534 for more information.

  • When a Parent is Sick: Helping parents explain serious illness to children, 2003 
  • Helping your Children Cope with Your Cancer: A guide for parents and families, 2006
  • Nowhere Hair: Explain cancer and hair loss to kids
  • When a Parent is Sick: Helping Parents Explain Serious Illness to Children, 2003
  • Helping Your Children Cope with Your Cancer: A Guide for Parents and Families, 2006
  • My Parent has Cancer and It Really Sucks, 2013

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Your Health Matters
Check out for articles on a variety of related topics including:

BC Cancer Agency: Care & Research
Download a copy of “Reaching Out to Your Children When Cancer Comes to Your Family: A Guide for Parents.”

Support services

Odette Patient & Family Support
Location: TG-230 (T-wing, ground floor)
Free advice, resources and information to help you talk to your children about cancer.

Canadian Cancer Society
Free services include peer support, support groups, online communities, and a cancer information telephone line.

Cancer Connection (Canadian Cancer Society)
An online community for people with cancer. Look for specific topics under the Forum “Cancer and the family.”

Gilda’s Club Toronto
Telephone: 416-214-9898
Free support groups for adults with cancer and children who currently have someone in their life who has cancer (Kids Talk Out).

Hearth Place Cancer Support Centre
Telephone: 905-579-4833
Location: Oshawa
Free support groups for adults with cancer and children who are coping with the diagnosis of a loved one with cancer (Kids Connection).

Telephone: 1-877-499-9904
Location(s): Several including Westerkirk House (on the Sunnybrook campus)
Free programs and services including short-term family counselling to help you prepare for talking to your children and support your family’s unique needs.

more infoMore information

  • Talking to your kids about breast cancer: A guide for parents
    See this resource online or visit the PEARL Library to borrow a copy.
  • The Kids’ Guide to Mommy’s Breast Cancer
    See this resource online or visit the PEARL Library to borrow a copy.
  • A Friend in Hope: a Story about Hope’s Journey with a brain tumour
    To order a free copy, please go to or visit the PEARL Library to borrow a copy.

While this information may be useful, it is intended for educational purposes only. Please continue to ask your health care team if you have questions or concerns. For any other inquiries, please contact us at


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