” Reason this person is a Gold Ribbon Hero: Kelsey was diagnosed with infantile fibrosarcoma on July 15, 2015. Since then she has gone through multiple treatments of chemotherapy every week, 2 surgeries, 9 different medications (not including the chemo meds), still goes to public school, and has never stopped smiling through all of it. Kelsey is the strongest 7 year old I know & has overcome more in the last few months than most do in a lifetime. She has managed to do all of this while still inspiring others & she keeps her big beautiful smile on her face. I am so proud of you Kelsey Brooke!” – Jennifer V.
iPad Mini Giveaway for Hunter Zen’s 9th Birthday!
We are very excited to share that we have received four Apple Inc. iPad Mini’s from the amazing Healing Hunter Foundation to give to four Childhood Cancer Warriors. We are asking for you to please nominate a Gold Ribbon Hero who you think would love an iPad Mini. The child or teen nominated should currently be in treatment for Childhood Cancer and not already have an iPad device. Please use the comment section below the post on our Facebook Page to share your nomination and on November 1st, four nominations will be selected to receive an iPad Mini. You are welcome to include a photo if you’d like as well. If you have any questions please contact Christy at email@example.com. Thank yo
The Apple iPad Mini giveaway is in honor of Hunter Zen’s 9th Birthday. The Healing Hunter Foundation was created in honor of a brave Childhood Cancer Warrior named Hunter Zen. Hunter was a charismatic toddler that lost his battle with AML Leukemia in March of 2010. The Foundation’s motto is “Fighting Childhood Cancers, One Smile at a Time, Through Random Acts of Kindness”.
The Healing Hunter Foundation’s mission is three fold: to bring smiles to the children suffering from these devastating diseases, to increase bone marrow and cord blood donations, and to assist other families dealing with childhood cancers. Hunter’s unique and inspirational journey can be found at HealingHunter.com or you can learn more by visiting their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/HealingHunterFoundation. We are very grateful to Hunter’s Mom and the Healing Hunter’s Foundation President, Lenore, for this very generous and kind offer and can definitely feel sweet Hunter’s love!
From Hunter’s Mommy: “Oh lovie… The magic your lil’ soul creates fills me with such joy. I wouldn’t be able to make it through this day without your presence being all around me… and I will tell you with the sweetest of hearts, that I will truly feel your cuddly lil’ arms giving me wonderfully, tight bean squeezes all day long. I’m so proud of you and your amazing lil’ legacy. You rock it in the coolest of ways my love. Blowing you smooches to tickle your belly from sunrise to sunset…I love you sweet pea xoxoxoxoxoxoxo” ~ Lenore
Hunter Zen’s brave battle against Childhood Cancer personally touched those of us who followed him. His parents were so open and willing to share Hunter’s unforgettable battle, up until the very end when they both saw him take his last little breath and hugged his sweet body as they reluctantly said their goodbyes. They were some of the first who shared so much on social media and although it was very hard for some to see, it was the truth about childhood cancer and the truth needed to be seen.
Little Hunter, thank you for continuing to share your sweet love with other children who are fighting the hard battle and with other families who need to see a joyful smile and hear a happy giggle. You baby, are making this possible with your Mommy’s willing and open heart. Thank you!
To learn more about Hunter’s story, please click here.
“Reason this person is a Gold Ribbon Hero: Ayven is a 5 year old champion fighting acute b-cell lymphocytic lymphoma. He is always smiling and never complains about going inpatient for chemo! He carries on every day in his normal routine as much as he can and doesn’t let cancer get him down! If you ask him how he’s doing, he always says, “I’m good!” He loves to joke and take silly pictures. His personality is full of life and determination! Ayven’s definitely a hero!” – Misty L.
2015 CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS MONTH
As we end an incredible Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, we look back at all the amazing things we, as a community, were able to accomplish. We reached further than we ever had before. We had more businesses and people reach out to help support and advocate this year. We saw profiles and cover photos turn gold, thousands of supporters wear their Go Gold teeshirts, hashtags and trending conversations on social media, and thousands of photos and shares as more and more people became aware that children get cancer too.
With all the accomplishments and advances forward, it still feels like it’s not enough as the statistics of children being diagnosed, childhood cancer related deaths and outdated treatments and medications still lingers… But know that with each person learning about these statistics and becoming aware, that each one represents more hope for our community. Just one more person could be the one to make the difference. Just one more person to be moved enough to organize an event, like PJammin®, at their school or place of work, to empower more people to become advocates, to create a new treatment, to become a voice within the government to possibly change a nation. Just one person could be that difference, so with this statement we feel that the efforts in September may have just moved enough new people to make that big change we are all hoping for!
Although September is over and this ultimately represents the end of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, it certainly doesn’t mean that things pause and wait for next year. Our efforts will not and have never stopped with the end of September, and we hope that’s true for all of you that helped make this last month an incredible month for our community. Below are just a few of the campaigns, events, and programs we would like to highlight that helped make this past September very special. Thank you from all of us and please contact us if you want to learn more about how you can continue to make a difference for children and teens facing cancer all year long!
2015 GO GOLD SHIRTS
We are overjoyed at the overwhelming success of this year’s Go Gold for Kids with Cancer® awareness t-shirt campaign! We simply cannot think of a better way to showcase the critical importance of September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month than by celebrating the children who have been touched by this difficult, traumatic, and all-too-often deadly disease. The 2015 t-shirt featured an incredible 3,454 names of children who have suffered from some form of childhood cancer. The names of these children cannot, indeed must not ever be forgotten, whether they are undergoing treatment now, are a survivor, or sadly left us far too soon. Demand for this years’ t-shirt was so high that we extended the purchase deadline by one week to September 8, to ensure that everyone who wanted a t-shirt was able to get one and still receive it this month! With the second campaign ending last night, a total of 8,132 t-shirts have been ordered this year! LEARN MORE…
LIGHT UP THE WORLD GOLD
More than 100 prominent buildings, iconic landmarks and monuments on 4 continents around the world participated in the international gold lighting program to raise awareness for childhood cancer. This program is the innovation of the American Childhood Cancer Organization who hosts an interactive mapacknowledging those who took part in their LIGHT IT UP GOLD campaign during the month of September, which is International Childhood Cancer Awareness month. The gold ribbon is the international symbol representing childhood cancer. LEARN MORE…
TWIBBON CAMPAIGN – GO GOLD
STEPUP 2015 – SUPPORT THE STAR ACT
6TH CHILDHOOD CANCER SUMMIT
NEW “GO GOLD” EVENT – PEDICURE
ACCO GOLD PACE CAR – IRACING
FLA-VOR-ICE – TAKE A POP PROGRAM
TRIDERMA – SHARE YOUR STORY
COLUMBIA & PALMCO CARES
ANGELA ROI – NOMINATE A HERO
2015 TREE RIBBONS ARE READY!
Cozy Cat Coloring Contest
How will your Cozy join in the spirit of Halloween fun? The ACCO is hosting its first-ever Cozy Cat Coloring Contest and we can’t wait see all of the fun, spooky, creative costumes you can come up with!
Starting October 7 through October 23, the ACCO is accepting submissions of pictures of Cozy Cat that you have decorated! You may use any creative, fun idea you can come up with to create the grandest costume you can think of for one of the five Cozy images we have selected to use for this year’s content. Crayons, markers, colored pencils, paint, computer graphics, feathers, ribbons, gem stones, glitter glue: whatever you can dream up to decorate your Cozy image, you can use, and we can’t wait to see the amazing results!
To participate, select one of the five images of “Cozy the Port-a-Cat” from the ACCO’s website: https://www.acco.org/cozycoloring/. The available options are:
This contest is open to all children and teens, and each participant may submit up to five decorated images. When you have picked your very best Cozy Cat image(s), send a scanned image or a photo of your child’s submission to firstname.lastname@example.org, message it to the ACCO’s Facebook page, or mail it to:
American Childhood Cancer Organization
Attn: Cozy Coloring Contest
10920 Connecticut Ave. Ste. A
Kensington, MD 20853
When submitting your entry, please indicate your child or teen’s name, age group (see below), and type of cancer they are fighting or have fought.
Between October 26 and October 30, all colored Cozy submissions will be posted on our Facebook page, organized within three age groups: 1-4 years, 5-10 years, and 11-18 years. The top three images to receive the most votes in each age group will receive our special prize: a Go Gold custom prize package. All submissions will be included in our Halloween 2015 Cozy Coloring Album!
For more details on this fun content, as well as a guide to the complete rules, please visit the ACCO’s website at: https://www.acco.org/cozycoloring/.
Who is “Cozy the Port-a-Cat”?
Cancer is a terrifying experience for children and youth of all ages. For the child or teen who already feels sick, the constant barrage of tests with painful needles and uncomfortable machines, the countless numbers of doctors and nurses hovering around, and the frequent hospital visits and extended hospital stays can be overwhelming. And for parents, who are trying to provide comfort while remaining calm in the face of their own fears, finding the words to explain what is happening presents yet another difficult challenge.
Cozy the Port-a-Cat can help! This soft, plush stuffed animal—a warm, fluffy cat—has been specially designed by the ACCO as both a teaching tool and a companion for children. Designed to be soft and loveable to provide comfort, company, and something to hug, Cozy the Port-a-Cat is also designed to help parents explain tests and procedures to the young child. Cozy has strategically-placed patches to represent port access, bone marrow aspirate, gastrostomy tube (g-tube), spinal tap, and a hand IV, so parents and medical personnel can use Cozy to demonstrate where the test or procedure will take place. The child can even watch Cozy have the procedure first! Cozy comes in two sizes: 13” Cozy is available free to all children battling childhood cancer; 17” Cozy is available for purchase through the ACCO online store.
“Cozy the Port-a-Cat” is just one of many resources developed by the ACCO to help make the lives of children and families facing childhood cancer just a little bit easier. Like Cozy, many of these resources are designed specifically for children, to help them understand what they are going through and to provide aid and comfort whenever possible. For example, the Medical Play Kit includes small, child-friendly replicas of many of the tools and instruments commonly used during cancer treatment, including a stethoscope, wrap tape, thermometer, arm board, band aid holder, pill bottle, tubing and syringes, and rubber gloves and two face masks: one for the child and one for Cozy! The Cozy Cares Journal helps older children understand and articulate the difficult feelings that often develop during and after cancer treatment. These and many other resources, all available free to children and families fighting cancer, are designed to help families cope and even thrive during this all-too-difficult time.
The American Childhood Cancer Organization is dedicated to offering assistance, support, and guidance to children facing childhood cancer and their families. Founded and led by survivors—individuals who have themselves or whose children have been touched by childhood cancer and its late effects—the ACCO is guided by a deep, personal commitment to doing everything we can to make the lives of the children courageously battling this deadly disease just a bit easier. To find out how you can help, we encourage you to visit www.acco.org for more information on our critical mission and specifics on how you can help us eliminate this threat to our children forever.
Kids Can’t Fight Cancer Alone!™
Global Challenge—To Light Up the Entire World Gold
Together with its international partners, this year the American Childhood Cancer Organization issued a global challenge—to light up the entire world gold to raise awareness about this deadly disease—and the response was simply incredible! In support of September as International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, more than 100 prominent buildings, national landmarks, and iconic monuments across four continents helped spotlight the dire challenges posed by this disease by lighting up gold or prominently and proudly displaying the yellow ribbon, the international symbol of the fight against childhood cancer. The ACCO would like to thank the thousands of people around the world who came together in support of this important cause and helped us “Light It Up Gold”!
Month of September
Throughout the entire month of September, the world shone with gold: the now internationally-recognized color of childhood cancer symbolizing the brave young warriors and their families who have fought childhood cancer and won, those precious children who have left us far too soon, and the survivors who struggle daily with the long-term effects of childhood cancer and today’s outdated treatment protocols. From the most well-known national monuments to the parks of the smallest towns, from the tip of South America to the top of Canada and across the entire globe, the world came together to show these children and their families that they are not alone. We cannot hope to list here in this limited space all of the places that proudly displayed their support, but here are just a few highlights:
- Bridges: Mont Blanc Bridge in Geneva, Switzerland; Trafalgar Bridge in Perth, Australia; the Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge in Boston, United States
- National landmarks: Casa Histórica de Tucumán in San Miguel de Tucuman, Argentina; Blarney Castle in Blarney, Ireland; Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth, United Kingdom; Seattle Great Wheel in Seattle, United States; Bridal Falls, part of Niagara Falls in Ontario, Canada
- Fountains: Harmony Square in Brantford, Canada; Anzac Park Fountain in Queensland, Australia
- Stadiums: Fenway Park in Boston, United States; Turner Field in Atlanta, United States; Suncor Stadium in Milton, Australia
- Buildings: One World Trade Center in New York City, Calgary Tower in Calgary, Canada, Houston City Hall in Houston, United States, British Columbia Parliament Building, Victoria Canada, Parliament House in Brisbane, Australia, Maerua Mall Office Tower in Windhoek, Namibia, and of course, the headquarters of the ACCO outside Washington, DC
For a complete listing of all the buildings and landmarks that participated in this year’s amazing Light It Up Gold campaign, we encourage you to visit the ACCO’s interactive map which you can find at https://www.acco.org/light-up-the-world-gold/.
Light it Up Gold Campaign
More than 100 prominent buildings, iconic landmarks and monuments on 4 continents around the world participated in the international gold lighting program to raise awareness for childhood cancer. This program was founded in the U.S. by the American Childhood Cancer Organization who hosts an interactive map acknowledging those who took part in their LIGHT IT UP GOLD campaign during the month of September, which is International Childhood Cancer Awareness month. The gold ribbon is the international symbol representing childhood cancer.
“We couldn’t have had such a successful program without the help of our wonderful volunteers who really got behind this effort,” said Ruth Hoffman, Executive Director for ACCO. “And we can’t send enough thanks to the owners of the buildings and landmarks for shining a light the #1 non-communicable disease cause of death for 90,000 children each year, in both developed and developing countries. We look forward to working with everyone again next year to make 2016 even more golden!”
Curable Childhood Cancers
Several types of childhood cancer are now curable; yet in developing countries, as few as 2 out of 10 children/adolescents survive as a result of a lack of access to essential medicines and treatment. In developed countries, 8 out of 10 children/adolescents will survive their cancer 5 years or longer. LIGHT IT UP GOLD will spotlight the need to stop the dying of our world’s children with cancer!
“Our Volunteers really knocked it out of the park in working with the stakeholders at these locations that either changed their lighting to gold or prominently displayed large sized gold ribbons,” said Neal Rourke, International Tribute Lighting Program Volunteer Coordinator. “We are really appreciative of their efforts to make this program a success.”
Some of the well-known landmarks include One World Trade Center; Calgary Tower; Brisbane Bridge; Parliament House; Mont Blanc Bridge; and Houston City Hall.
About American Childhood Cancer Organization: The American Childhood Cancer Organization (ACCO) is the nation’s largest grassroots organization at the forefront of the crucial battle against childhood cancer. The ACCO is dedicated to improving the lives of children living with childhood cancer and its long-term impacts, and to offering critical advice, support, and assistance to families engaged in this life-altering struggle.
FOR MORE INFORMATION OR TO SET UP AN INTERVIEW: Ruth Hoffman, Executive Director, email@example.com. Cell: 202-262-9949, Direct Line: 855-858-2226, ext. 104
“Reason this person is a Gold Ribbon Hero: Aiden was diagnosed with stage four neroblastoma at 2 and a half though all the chemo and transplant the radiation treatments he was always happy and smiling. Aiden is now a little over one year cancer-free he just turned 4 on sept 14 not only is he my son but my hero and best friend!!” – Matt Y.