Cancer Action was founded in 1959 as “The Cancer Association of Wyandotte County, Inc.” a small agency located in Kansas City, Kansas established by a group of caring volunteers to provide services to those facing the devastating impact of cancer in the Kansas City metropolitan area. The agency originally offered such practical services as transportation, dressings, bed pads, comfort items, medical equipment, and community prevention programs. In 1976, the agency changed its name to Cancer Action, Inc., to reflect the agency’s mission of serving the entire metropolitan area. Over time, the agency has continued to grow in size and services offered in order to meet the many changing and complex needs of cancer patients in the community. Cancer Action serves any person diagnosed with cancer who resides in the five county metropolitan area. This includes Johnson and Wyandotte in Kansas, and Clay, Platte, and Jackson in Missouri.

The agency opened its first branch office in Independence, Missouri in 1997 to make the agency’s programs and services more accessible on the eastern side of the metropolitan area. This office has seen a number of renovations and site changes to keep up with the needs of the community.

In 2001, the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Information Service honored the agency with its first national recognition. The agency was presented with the prestigious award of “Partner in Patient Support”. This award was given because of Cancer Action’s commitment to improving the quality of life of cancer patients and the comprehensive support offered by the agency.

2005 was another record-breaking year as the agency provided support to 3,670 cancer patients and their families. Not only has the agency experienced an increase in the number of persons being served, but also in the need for more ongoing support to make it through this difficult and uncertain life experience.

2006 was a significant year in the agency’s history as the second branch office in Overland Park, Kansas was opened on January 18, the Kansas City KS office received a make-over in March, and the Independence office moved into its new site in April!

In 2008, the Midwest Christian Counseling Center awarded Cancer Action the "2008 Heart of American Ethics in Business Award".   

Cancer Action is operated with the compassionate care of 10 staff and over 1,000 volunteers. Cancer Action’s volunteers are at the very heart of the agency. Many have given thousands of hours to improve the quality of life of those touched by cancer. Through the efforts of volunteers, donors, staff members and the board of directors, Cancer Action has been a beacon of hope, empowerment and comfort to thousands of persons over its forty-nine years of service to the Kansas City area.