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Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Compressed Bear


Families, caregivers, charities and research groups across the United States observe September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. In the U.S., 15,780 children under the age of 21 are diagnosed with cancer every year; approximately 1/4 of them will not survive the disease. A diagnosis turns the lives of the entire family upside down. The objective of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month is to put a spotlight on the types of cancer that largely affect children, survivorship issues, and – importantly – to help raise funds for research and family support.

Photo Credit: Marie-Dominique Verdier


We have combined several of our popular store items into special awareness kits for the month of September. Kits include gold ribbon lapel pins, gold ribbon stickers, car magnets, and more. Click the link to visit our e-store.


ACCO unites childhood cancer advocates across the country by highlighting individual stories through our Gold Ribbon Heroes Program and by registering and facilitating awareness events and fundraisers at schools and businesses. September is a time to commit to raising childhood cancer awareness all year. Pledge to bring awareness to your community, and choose an event option below!

Nominate September Gold Ribbon Heroes

Gold Ribbon Heroes are individuals who have made a positive impact on the lives of others. This includes patients, parents, hospital staff, volunteers, survivors, siblings, and more.  We want to recognize the impact they have made, and we hope you will share their stories to inspire others. Nominate your hero HERE.

Host or Register Awareness Events

We aim to register as many childhood cancer awareness events as possible during September. Of course, we would love to see many events in September, but we understand that many school and business calendars may not be able to accomodate additional events until later in the year. If this applies to your school or business, we urge you to commit to hosting an event, even if it cannot be held in September. Children with cancer need our support year-round!

  • Go Gold® Participants plan and host a gold-themed event to raise awareness of the symbol for childhood cancer. This is a fun project for groups, businesses, and churches.

These event choices offer enough ease and flexibility for anyone to join in this important initiative. Your participation will help create aware, supportive communitities for families who face this terrible diagnosis, and all donations will support the creation and implementation of support programs and materials. Participants have 2 different options (see below) to help plan and host their events. ACCO will provide fundraising consultation, if needed, and we will also provide gold ribbon stickers and free flyers for event promotion.


IV Hallway

September 2012


Every year, thousands of children across America are diagnosed with cancer    an often life threatening illness that remains the leading cause of death by disease for children under the age of 15.  The causes of pediatric cancer are still largely unknown, and though new discoveries are resulting in new treatments, this heartbreaking disease continues to scar families and communities in ways that may never fully heal.  This month, we remember the young lives taken too soon, stand with the families facing childhood cancer today, and rededicate ourselves to combating this terrible illness.
While much remains to be done, our Nation has come far in the fight to understand, treat, and control childhood cancer.  Thanks to ongoing advances in research and treatment, the 5 year survival rate for all childhood cancers has climbed from less than 50 percent to 80 percent over the past several decades.  Researchers around the world continue to pioneer new therapies and explore the root causes of the disease, driving progress that could reveal cures or improved outcomes for patients.  But despite the gains we have made, help still does not come soon enough for many of our sons and daughters, and too many families suffer pain and devastating loss.
My Administration will continue to support families battling pediatric cancer and work to ease the burdens they face.  Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies can no longer deny health coverage to children because of pre existing conditions, including cancer, nor can they drop coverage because a child is diagnosed with cancer.  The law also bans insurers from placing a lifetime dollar limit on the amount of coverage they provide, giving families peace of mind that their coverage will be there when they need it most.  And as we work to ensure all Americans have access to affordable health care, my Administration will continue to invest in the cutting edge cancer research that paves the way for tomorrow’s breakthroughs.
This month, we pay tribute to the families, friends, professionals, and communities who lend their strength to children fighting pediatric cancer.  May their courage and commitment continue to move us toward new cures, healthier outcomes, and a brighter future for America’s youth.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 2012 as National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.  I encourage all Americans to join me in reaffirming our commitment to fighting childhood cancer.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty first day of August, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-seventh.


Senate Passes Allard-Clinton ‘National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day’ Resolution
May 23, 2008

WASHINGTON, D.C.– September 13, 2008 will now be recognized as “National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day” as a result of a Senate resolution introduced by U.S. Senators Wayne Allard (R-Colo.) and Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY).

“Never before in history has the dream of eliminating childhood cancer been so attainable, yet seemed so elusive,” said Senator Allard. “We live in a nation where the effectiveness of treatments and technology offer hope to children who dream of a bright future. Each case of childhood cancer is a very personal tragedy that can strike any family with children, at anytime, anywhere. In setting aside September 13th to recognize this battle on cancer, we continue of our efforts to draw attention to the victims of childhood cancer and the great work of the families and organizations who continue the fight.”

“We have made tremendous strides in the fight against childhood cancer, but far too many children still suffer and lose their lives to this illness. The more we know as a nation the better able we will be to prevent and treat the disease and help those who are battling and surviving pediatric cancers.  National Childhood Cancer Awareness Day is an opportunity to reach out to all Americans with the facts about childhood cancer, and this day will be an important symbol of our commitment on all days to find a cure,” said Senator Clinton.

Childhood cancer is the number one disease killer and the second overall leading cause of death of children in the United States. More than 10,000 children under the age of 15 in the United States are diagnosed with cancer annually.


The following is the initial proclamation signed in 1990 by then President George H.W. Bush naming October as National Awareness Month for Childhood Cancer.

National Awareness Month for Children With Cancer, 1990

By the President of the

United States of America

A Proclamation

Thanks to the dramatic progress that has been made in early diagnosis and treatment of the disease, young cancer victims and their families no longer need to relinquish their dreams for the future. In many cases, advances in science and technology are bringing hope and healing where once there was only fear and loss.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the number of child deaths from cancer in the United States declined by 36 percent between 1973 and 1987 – a significant change in a relatively short period of time.  Today, three out of every four children diagnosed with Hodgkin’s disease are being cured.  Since 1960, our ability to treat other serious forms of cancer such as Wilm’s tumor and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma has improved markedly—nearly 50 percent more children are living for at least five years after diagnosis.  The Department also reports that the number of children surviving acute lymphocytic leukemia has risen by 25 percent since 1974.

Nevertheless, despite such encouraging progress, cancer continues to be the leading cause of death by disease among children between the ages of 3 and 14. Families facing the specter of childhood cancer need the best possible medical care and emotional support we can provide. Many need financial help as well.  Every family touched by childhood cancer needs the support of its relatives, neighbors, teachers, and clergy. Parents need the understanding and compassions of their employers, and brothers and sisters of young cancer victims need special consideration, both at home and in school. Young cancer patients themselves need every opportunity to express and pursue the fresh, unjaded dreams that are the hallmark of childhood.

Many private organizations and government agencies throughout the United States are working to meet the needs of children with cancer.  The National Cancer Institute (NCI), operating within the Department of Health and Human Services, is the Federal Government’s principal agency for cancer research. In cooperation with universities and research institutes throughout the Nation, the NCI is engaged in treatment studies for 14 types of childhood cancer. Yielding new and refined methods of treatment, these studies are helping to improve the prognosis for many young cancer victims. For example, many children whose bone cancer in the past might have required the amputation of an arm or leg can now benefit from surgical techniques that allow them to keep their limbs without diminished chances of survival.

In addition to advances in research and technology, rehabilitation programs are likewise helping to improve the quality of life enjoyed by young cancer patients. Recent breakthroughs in our understanding of the brain and nervous system for example, are making it possible for many of those who must use artificial limbs to control them by brain impulses.

Hundreds of private voluntary organizations at both the national and local levels—including the American Cancer Society, the Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation, the Leukemia Society of America, and the Ronald McDonald Foundation are helping parents and children to cope with the emotional and financial stresses created by cancer treatment and rehabilitation. Through the generosity of these and other groups, young cancer patients and their parents may obtain free air travel to treatment centers; parents may benefit from low-cost lodging while their little one is receiving treatment far from home; and youngsters themselves may have the opportunity to spend time at a special summer camp or to see an earnest wish fulfilled.

This month we recognize the dedication and hard work of all those scientists, health care professionals, and volunteers who are working to overcome childhood cancer and to assist its victims. We also reaffirm our admiration and support for the courageous youngsters and parents who struggle with this disease.

Now, therefore, I George Bush, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the of the United States, do hereby proclaim October 1990 as National Awareness Month for Children with Cancer.  I encourage all Americans to observe this month through appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEROF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirtieth day of October, in the year of our Lord Nineteen hundred and ninety, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fifteenth.

George Bush