History

Founder’s Greetings

Sheila KussnerAlthough it is hard to believe today, when I founded Hope & Cope in 1981, the word “cancer” was still whispered and the idea of experienced volunteers helping patients through the cancer journey was considered risky.

We were true pioneers then and I am proud to say that more than three decades later, Hope & Cope is still innovating and still leading the way, with confidence, creativity and compassion.

If you have cancer, or are helping a loved one through this often overwhelming experience, we are here for you.

sheila-sig

Sheila Kussner, O.C., O.Q.

A History of Firsts

Wellness openingWe’ve been providing compassionate, supportive, evidence-based cancer care for over three decades. In fact, when Hope & Cope opened its doors in 1981, the very concept of providing peer support within a hospital cancer setting was considered revolutionary.

Founded by Sheila Kussner, O.C., O.Q., and affiliated with the Jewish General Hospital in Montreal, Hope & Cope is a non-profit organization comprised of 500 volunteers managed and guided by a professional staff. Together, we support cancer patients and their caregivers from the moment of diagnosis through all stages of cancer, with a special focus on survivorship.

Recognized nationally and internationally for our pioneering approach and evidence-based programs, we have a proud history of many “firsts” in Quebec.

We were the first to create a support group for women newly diagnosed with cancer and then, years later, the first to create a group called “Breast Friends” for women with metastatic cancer.

We established the first Men’s Club for men with cancer as well as male caregivers.

4women_BronfmanBack in 1985, we were the first to recognize that young adults have specific needs and challenges. We responded with a support group that eventually developed into CancerFightClub, a dynamic, innovative community for young adults and their supporters, both locally and on-line. And when parents with cancer wondered what to tell their children and how they would cope with raising a family while undergoing treatment, we responded with En famille.

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