Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

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When most people think of September, it’s the start of fall drinks at Starbucks, the first fallen leaves, the first day of school, but what should dominate September is Childhood Cancer Awareness. According to St. Baldrick’s Foundation, every two minutes a child is diagnosed with cancer, a word that shatters the air and leaves everyone a little emptier. September is a time when we honor and support all these children and families affected by this devastating disease.

When most people think of September, it’s the start of fall drinks at Starbucks, the first fallen leaves, the first day of school, but what should dominate September is Childhood Cancer Awareness. According to St. Baldrick’s Foundation, every two minutes a child is diagnosed with cancer, a word that shatters the air and leaves everyone a little emptier. September is a time when we honor and support all these children and families affected by this devastating disease.

No child should have to experience cancer and all that it entails. Recognizing these children’s stories and strength brings so much awareness to the situation. It is truly amazing how brave and beautiful children can be while dealing with such an ugly disease. If you’re lucky enough to not personally be tied to the cruel disease then reach out to those that are, and help them in their fight.

The most shattering outcome of cancer is when it takes the life of a child. Nothing can rectify a child’s death or fill their unique and meaningful place in their family and community. Although survival rates have improved, childhood cancer is stealing more lives everyday. Not only is the initial fight against cancer strenuous, but also according to CureSearch for Children’s Cancer, 60 percent of children who have had cancer experience repercussions later in life like infertility, heart failure and secondary cancers. Countless procedures and treatments become a reality for too many children who should be experiencing a joyous childhood, not a hospital.

Although the disease becomes all the more heartbreaking when it affects children, the National Cancer Institute only gives four percent of their federal funding to childhood cancer. Similarly, pharmaceutical companies provide funding and research for adult cancer but almost none for children because the market is less profitable. More kids are diagnosed everyday but the funding has fallen greatly behind.  Children must be our highest priority and the necessary treatment and research needs to be provided. It is unacceptable to deprive our precious children due to this lack of funding.

Because September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month, it is the perfect time to start getting involved and make a difference. Donate money, volunteer at fundraisers, take part in a local walk or run, honor children diagnosed with cancer, or simply wear a gold ribbon to show your support. Get your community involved in the fight against childhood cancer and bring awareness to everyone. Children diagnosed with this life threatening disease need you and they deserve our unequivocal support.