For Childhood Cancer Families

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Travel For Care Program

The mission of ALSF’s Travel For Care program is to ensure children battling childhood cancer have the financial assistance needed to travel to clinical trials, experimental therapeutics, or treatment innovations not currently available at their local institution.  

"It is because of Alex’s Lemonade Stand Travel For Care Program that our families are able to access continued care outside our hospital. Not only do they assist with funding, they understand the urgency with which the funds must be dispensed in order for a child to receive emergent care. Several times, ALSF has been able to purchase tickets within minutes of receiving an application. There is no organization I am able to contact that can provide such a valuable service. Truly, families breathe a sigh of relief each time Alex’s Lemonade Stand offers them the resources that give their child another chance at living."   Debra Hansen, Social Worker, ALL Children’s Hospital, St. Petersburg, FL

Funding for transportation and lodging is available for eligible families who are financially burdened by traveling away from their home hospital for care that is only available elsewhere.

View what healthcare professionals have to say about this program!

To submit a new Travel For Care Program Application, click below.
To submit a request for a family who has already received assistance.

How to apply

Applications must be submitted by a social worker or member of the oncology care team. Please review the guidelines below before applying.

For questions and extenuating circumstances, please reach out to Family Services directly: [email protected] or 610-649-3034.

Travel for Care applications can be submitted through our secure portal.  In the secure portal you will be able to:

  • Submit referrals for multiple programs
  • Track the status of submitted referrals
  • See current amount of assistance received
  • Communicate securely and directly with Family Services staff about specific applications

If you have not already done so, please visit to set up your hospital’s account and your contact information.

**Please note that due to security requirements, Internet Explorer is not supported by this portal. Using Internet Explorer to create an account will generate error messages and will require admin support.

For support and questions, please email [email protected] or call 610-649-3034

Criteria to be met

  • Child must be diagnosed with cancer or a cancer predisposition (Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome, Histiocytosis, Li-Fraumeni syndrome, Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), Post-Transplant Lymphoproliferative Disorders (PTLD), etc.).
  • Child’s original diagnosis must be before age 18, and child must currently be under age 21.
  • Patient must be in active oncology treatment and one of the following:
    1. Experiencing a pediatric oncology relapse
    2. Enrolling in or currently enrolled in a clinical trial for active oncology treatment intervention
    3. Receiving a treatment intervention that is not considered standard therapy (e.x.: Proton Beam Therapy, MIBG, etc.)
  • Travel For Care is not meant to be the sole source of travel assistance for a family to get to treatment.
  • All applications must be submitted by a member of the patient’s oncology treatment team.
  • Referrals must be completed entirely and truthfully; false or misleading information will result in an automatic denial.

Things to know before applying

  • Travel For Care provides up to $4,000 annually ($8,000 for patients enrolled in ALSF-funded trials) in assistance as long as all eligibility criteria are met.
  • Family’s estimated annual household income at the time of request must be less than $100,000.
  • Travel assistance is intended for the patient and 1 caregiver to get to treatment.
  • ALSF pays travel vendors directly: we cannot reimburse travel expenses, pay for travel that has already taken place, or cover reservations made through a third party (Expedia, Travelocity, etc.).
  • At this time, assistance is only available for travel within the US and Canada.
  • Please provide as much lead time on travel dates as possible.
  • ALSF requires a referral for each request for travel assistance. Requests must be submitted through our secure online application portal:
  • We process applications within 1 business day during our office hours: 9AM – 5PM Eastern Standard Time.

The program is not able to assist with

  • Travel for second opinions (i.e. cancer diagnosis has not been confirmed), integrative therapy, follow up appointments after active treatment is complete, and non-cancer treatments (dentist, PT, etc.).
  • Expenses that are not travel related (mortgage, rent, utilities, childcare, etc.).
  • Travel for visits from additional family members.

*Lodging Requests

  • Charity lodging (such as Ronald McDonald House) must be accessed first, unless there are mitigating circumstances (*Please note, ALSF does not cover donations to RMH per their website’s statement: “The RMHC Global Policy is that families are never turned away; if it’s not possible to pay, the fee is waived.”).
  • Patient must reside at least 2 hours or 100 miles from treatment facility.
  • ALSF does not make lodging reservations; reservations must be made directly with the hotel (with the “medical rate”) prior to applying to ALSF for assistance.
  • Please include the hotel name, confirmation number, name on the reservation, check-in/out dates, and estimated total in the request.
  • ALSF pays for lodging directly to the hotel or by sending a hotel-only credit card to the family.

*Airfare Requests

  • ALSF books commercial airfare for the patient and 1 caregiver.
  • Airfare requests MUST include: full legal names and birthdates of both travelers, departure and arrival airports, country and state of residence, and exact dates of travel.
  • Please indicate if there are special accommodations needed for the patient upon arrival to the airport (i.e. wheelchair assistance).

*Gas Requests

  • Gas assistance is approved based solely on mileage for driving the patient to/from active cancer treatment.
  • Travel must be a minimum of 700 miles/$100 over the course of treatment.
  • Assistance amount formula: (# miles per round trip) / (20 - avg mileage per gallon) x (local cost of gas) x (# of trips)
  • Fuel-only credit cards are shipped via FedEx; Please include the best address to receive the FedEx delivery

After Submission

We respond to all requests within 1 business day. For emergency requests, please contact Family Services directly. Follow up requests for approved families should be submitted through the Approved Applicant Request on our website:

View a PDF Version of the Guidelines

ALSF reserves the right to change these guidelines at any time without notice, and to apply these guidelines at its reasonable discretion. If you have any questions, please contact Family Services at 610-649-3034 or e-mail [email protected].

Special Thanks To

Rita’s Fund of Hope


The Rita’s Fund of Hope is an endowment created to ensure that the ALSF Travel For Care Fund will always be able to meet the travel needs of families whose children are battling cancer.

Northwestern Mutual Special Thanks to TD Bank
Dunkin Joy in Childhood Foundation The Wawa Foundation
Tap Cancer Out Power Home Remodeling