Here for families facing grief

Early 2018, Ruth Strauss, wife of Sir Andrew Strauss the former England cricket captain, was diagnosed with an incurable lung cancer that affects non-smokers.  Ruth died on December 29th 2018; she was 46 years old and mother to two children, then aged 10 and 13.

Our mission, as guided by Ruth, has a dual focus

  • Provide emotional support for families to prepare for the death of a parent.
  • Raise awareness of the need for more research & collaboration in the fight against non-smoking lung cancers.

Ruth Strauss Foundation- helping to provide gifts and experience for families where a parent has been diagnosed with incurable cancer

The Ruth Strauss Foundation is delighted to be working with Something to Look Forward To, so that together we can support families where a parent has incurable cancer to make memories together through special experiences. This project has been developed and funded by the Ruth Strauss Foundation and we are grateful to Something To Look Forward To who are hosting and administering this pilot.

What gifts are available?

The Ruth Strauss Foundation offers free guidance and support to parents on how to start and continue conversations with their children when a parent has been diagnosed with a cancer that cannot be cured. You can contact our service for support here.

We know that parents and children want to create memories for the future when a parent has cancer that cannot be cured. We also know how important it is to spend quality time together without having to worry about how to pay for it. We hope that by allowing yourselves the time and space to come together as a family, you can engage in open and honest conversations, sharing how each of you is feeling. Through this, you can prepare for the future together, with the belief that your family will get through this current time.

We offer gifts and vouchers for experiences that you can do together as a family for up to £350

We welcome hearing what gifts or experiences you might like to have as a family (children up to the age of 25 years old), but here are some ideas to get you started

  • A family night away at a holiday cottage or hotel at your favourite place
  • Tickets to a sports event
  • Day out at a theme or adventure park (Peppa Pig World, Legoland, Thorpe Park, Alton Towers, Chessington, Drusilla’s Park etc.) for the family
  • Family tickets to a musical/theatre show and dinner after
  • A day out to a castle or National Trust property
  • A riverboat ride and afternoon tea
  • A fun family photoshoot
  • At-home indoor family teepee party
  • Private chef-catered family dinner at home (if you’re not up to going out)
  • Special family dinner at your favourite restaurant or pub

We never provide a cash gift, we will either book the experience or provide vouchers /tickets so you can undertake your experience.

Eligibility criteria

  • A parent or primary caregiver has any incurable cancer with no more curative treatment options (you may have treatment to manage the cancer or its symptoms).
  • Must live in the UK.
  • Must be under a UK hospital or hospice for their care.
  • Experience is for a family and not only the adults.
  • Your youngest child must be 25 years old or younger.
  • The parent with the cancer must be alive at the point of making the application.
  • We do not fund experiences that involve gambling or fund experiences that involve alcohol only, unless it’s part of a meal.
  • Be able to undertake the experience independently or arrange your own assistance/support.
  • The activity or experience must be within the UK.

How to apply?

Currently, the gifts and experiences are available to any parents who are being supported by the Ruth Strauss Foundation, or live or are being treated within the county of Bedfordshire where we are piloting this offer with the Macmillan Welfare Benefits Team. All applications must be made by this team or the Ruth Strauss Foundation team.

If you are being treated at Bedford Hospital or in the hospice, locally contact the Macmillan Welfare Benefits Team on 0300 300 8145 who can help you make this application.

If you are not under any of these services, please contact who can advise on alternatives that may be available.

If you are under the support of the Ruth Strauss Foundation Family Support Service, one of our team can help you make this application contact us at

Macmillan Welfare Rights Service Bedfordshire

Ruth Strauss Foundation

Something To Look Forward To

  • Nadia Goncalves
    Projects Coordinator – General Enquiries


There are two steps to making this application

Step 1) Application for a gift

This section is completed by the Welfare Benefits Team or the Ruth Strauss Foundation who will sit with you and complete this section with your details including verification of your diagnosis.

Step 2) Requesting a specific gift

The parent/person requesting this gift will complete this form with details of the experience you want to undertake.

Complete the form with as much detail as you can and ‘Something To Look Forward To’ will be in touch with you when they receive your completed application and can help you further with any areas you are unsure of.

Step 1) Register the new gift applicant with the charity

Please complete the form below on behalf of the applicant using the applicants details

  • About the referrer/nominator:

  • DD slash MM slash YYYY

  • Details of the parent who you are nominating or referring for the gift/experience:

  • DD slash MM slash YYYY
  • DD slash MM slash YYYY
  • Something To Look Forward To Ltd reserves the right to seek confirmation from your referring agency if it is deemed necessary. I hereby give my permission for the referring agency to be contacted.
  • Referrer to confirm that they have seen paperwork on hospital letterhead paper that confirms that the person who is being nominated has an incurable cancer diagnosis and that they have dependent children under the age of 25 years old.

  • Data Capture – Required Information

    The following information is required in order to supply data to our existing and potential funding bodies and will only ever be shared anonymously. This information opens up additional funding opportunities to the charity enabling us to support more people living with cancer.

    What is your ethnic group?

    Please tick only one option.

Step 2) Apply for the gift

This form should be completed by the gift applicant and is to provide us with details of the gift the applicant wishes to receive