Our Mission

Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Family Alliance provides emotional, educational and practical support to families of children with cancer.

Our History

Candlelighters began in 1989 with two parent support groups from the Medical Center: one at Texas Children’s Cancer Center and one at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Children’s Cancer Hospital. The Texas Children’s Hospital group sought formal incorporation, and in 1992 Candlelighters was legally formed.  In the fall of 1992 they invited the MD Anderson Parent Group to join them and the two organizations merged into one.

The Parent Consultant Program was developed to directly meet the needs of families at the treatment centers and to inform them of potential resources. Our programs and services extend beyond the hospital walls with our Family Camp, Adopt-A-Family, Fall Festival, quarterly newsletter, and other special events. Over the years, we have learned how critically valuable it is for our Parent Consultants to be able to personally hand parents of children with cancer practical assistance such as a meal pass, parking assistance, or gas card. It is our greatest honor and privilege to bring this type of comfort to childhood cancer families when stress is so high and they feel so helpless.

Who We Serve

Candlelighters serves all children with cancer and their families, long term survivors of childhood cancer, adult survivors of childhood cancer and their families, and bereaved families treated at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Children’s Cancer Hospital and Texas Children’s Cancer Center.  There are no fees charged for any services provided by Candlelighters.

Candlelighters partners with families and shares their journey as they battle the disease and the tremendous financial burden they inherit immediately upon diagnosis. 

Our Staff

At the heart of our organization are the Parent Consultants.  To support our PC program, other staff members include an Executive Director, Associate Director, Development Director, Program Director and Administrative Assistant.

Our Funding

Candlelighters provides all of its services and programs at no cost to our families.  Candlelighters is supported by private funding through foundations, individuals, corporations, small businesses, and events.  Candlelighters fundraising events include our Lights of Courage Luncheon, Fun Walk, Margarita Taste Off and other fundraisers throughout the year.