Parents everywhere worry about their children coming down with everything from the common cold to chicken pox, but seldom do those parents ever even allow themselves to imagine their child battling cancer.
It’s a sad reality that far too many families have to face. What’s even worse is that many times, the best treatment available for the children is hundreds to thousands of miles away from their homes. This leaves families with the burden of trying to get to treatment centers. Many times they are financially unable to get there. After all, even with insurance, cancer treatment is exorbitantly expensive.
To add insult to injury, the option of flying isn’t always viable. While cost is a problem, germs can sometimes be even more of an issue.
Germs are everywhere on private jets and those with compromised immune systems run the risk of contracting any variety of illnesses simply by boarding the jet.
For instance, MRSA, H1N1, influenza, and E Coli are all found on surfaces on commercial jets. In addition, merely sitting on a jet with other passengers gives each person a 20 percent higher chance of catching a cold or the flu than if they had not gotten on the flight.
Knowing this, cancer patients, especially pediatric cancer patients, could potentially jeopardize their health and their lives by taking a flight to receive treatment.
To circumvent this obstacle, cancer patients of any age can take a private jet – at no cost.
The Corporate Angel Network offers empty seats on corporate jets to cancer patients so they can access treatment facilities crucial to their fight against disease.
The life-saving company is based out of White Plains, NY. The Westchester County Airport offers the organization free office space for its 50 part-time volunteers and paid staff of six.
More than 3,000 flights go out each year with cancer patients onboard. While many people are able to take advantage of these flights, there are still several thousands of people suffering from cancer that do not get matched up with a flight.
This is because the organization works with corporate flights only and sometimes those flights just don’t match up with the needs of patients. However, the Corporate Angel Network puts in a flight request for each person who contacts them three weeks before his or her scheduled appointment.
Cancer patients aren’t the only ones who get to take advantage of the flights.
Bone marrow donors and bone marrow recipients may also take part in the flights. Unlike many charity programs, the Corporate Angel Network does not require patients to show any sort of financial need and they are allowed to travel as often as necessary.
The company is supported by 500 corporations throughout the country. Since its inception in 1981, more than 35,000 flights have been coordinated.
Like all charity organizations, more help is always needed. Anyone interested in helping out with the Corporate Angel Network can send a cash donation via check to Corporate Angel Network, Westchester County Airport, One Loop Road, White Plains, NY 10604.
The organization also accepts bequests so that supporters of the program can continue to support it even beyond his or her lifetime. Stock shares, bonds, and mutual funds can also be donated to the program.
Frequent flyer miles can also be donated. Although this means they will fly commercially, for those with financial constraints who cannot find free travel on a corporate jet this method provides an answer to their prayers.
Airline tickets can also be donated. Volunteers are also needed and anyone looking to support the group can call 914-328-1313. Patients can call the toll-free line at 866-328-1313.