Bear Necessities is helping kids rediscover their childhood while we discover a cure for pediatric cancer.

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The Story of Bear Necessities


Our mission is to eliminate pediatric cancer while providing hope and support to those who are touched by it. Our vision is a world without pediatric cancer.

Forty-three children are diagnosed with cancer daily, and pediatric cancer remains the leading cause of death from disease among children. Even so, less than 4% of the total federal funding spent on cancer research is directed toward the treatment of children. 

These statistics are staggering. 

At Bear Necessities, we are dedicated to supporting pediatric cancer research to ultimately discover a cure, while continuing to help patients and their families today, bringing hope and joy to those in need. We couldn’t continue this critical work without the unwavering support of our donors. Thank you for all you do.

Our Legacy

Bear Necessities was founded in 1992 by Kathleen A. Casey, President and Founder. The foundation is named in memory of her eight-year-old son, Barrett “Bear” Krupa, who died after a courageous five-and-a-half year battle with Wilms Tumor, a pediatric cancer. Prior to his death, Bear and his mother discussed the formation of Bear Necessities. During his long stay in the hospital, Bear expressed more concern for other pediatric cancer patients than he did for himself. He and his mother learned that patients and their family members need support above and beyond standard medical care, and thus, Bear Necessities was born. 

Since our founding, our mission has never wavered. We are proud to make a difference to hundreds of children and families battling pediatric cancer every year.

Hi, my name is Bear and my mom named this foundation after me to help other kids with cancer in all sorts of ways, my friends and I want to thank you for your help. If you want to know more about Bear Necessities or further events you can call Kathleen. Thanks.

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Chicago Headquarters

55 West Wacker Dr, Suite 1100
Chicago, IL 60601

(312) 214-1200

Florida Chapter

Serving Golisano Children's Hospital
& greater Southwest Florida
Contact: [email protected]