Kids. Cancer. Two words that should never go together, but with almost 700 kids affected by cancer everyday, that is the harsh reality. Childhood cancer patients don't get a chance to act and play like normal kids. Everyday, 43 children are diagnosed with cancer, are sent to hospitals for treatment, and have stay in places where they can’t act like kids. They stay in boring, mostly white rooms and have nothing to occupy their minds during painful and stressful procedures. Making it so that these kids have the best life while they can is really important because 12% of children diagnosed with cancer will not survive. We want these kids to remember having fun and playing, not sitting in a boring room all day long. These children didn’t do anything to deserve being sick and they shouldn’t be punished by sitting around all day in hospitals with little to do. Childhood cancer patients in hospitals don’t get to act like kids.
I am interested in helping with this issue because I have seen the effects of cancer in my own life, and I am a strong believer that kids shouldn't be forced to grow up too fast. These cancer patients have to handle tough situations from a young age, which is a lot of pressure to put on the backs of children. This is an issue that we should care about because there is no way to prevent childhood cancer. It could happen to anyone and may even affect people that you know. 16000 kids are diagnosed each year in the US alone. This means that several thousand children are just sitting around, spending up to years in hospitals. Childhood cancer patients in hospitals don't get the chance to have a normal childhood and that needs to be fixed.
This issue mostly affects children diagnosed with cancer. According to American Childhood Cancer Organization, cancer is the most common cause of death by disease for children in America. Even though cancer is the most common cause of death by disease, 80% of children diagnosed with cancer will make it past the 5 year mark. Though this may look good, this means that once they pass five years old, their chances of survival is greatly decreased. ⅔ of all children who survive the disease, suffer from at least one chronic illness or long term effect such as heart damage, second cancers, lung damage, infertility, cognitive impairment, growth deficits, hearing loss, and much more. They also have to be closely monitored for the rest of their life. This issue of children with cancer not getting to live a very normal life has been a problem since childhood cancer has been around.
This is a problem in our community because these children cannot do anything about having cancer. They have to stay in the hospital for a long period of time in order to get the treatment they need such as Chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is a type a treatment that most childhood cancer patients take to try to get rid of the tumor, but it is very expensive for family members to pay for. In addition, we have very few childhood cancer centers in our community who don't receive much funding. The funding they do collect goes directly to tackling childhood cancer. Without this, children won't have the proper treatments and will have less items to entertain themselves.
Others in our community have helped with this issue by creating websites/fundraisers and encouraging people to donate. Alexander’s Toy Trunk, inc. is a nonprofit that provides new toys, books, and games to hospitalized children. Starting from just a cardboard box, and one boy bringing a few simple toys every week, this organization has grown tremendously. Thanks to them, it's brought much excitement and profit to hospitals throughout the area. There are now more advancements in the environment for the children, as well as an increase in pleasure from the patients. Although Alexander's Toy Trunk has benefited the issue greatly, there is still a need for help in our community.
We still need to contribute because toys and candy aren't the only things that children need. Children need to be loved and cared for. It is important that they have a chance to live their lives just as we do, making sure that cancer will not separate them from anyone. Alexander's Toy Trunk, is not the only organization that is trying to solve this problem, many others are creating new charities and fundraisers as well. Striving for More, inc. is even planning on creating medical dolls to provide comfort and help the children communicate where they are in pain. In order to make a change, we need to work together to raise awareness, and give these children a happy, healthy, and overall better life.
For our project we are collecting items and monetary donations to give to duke hospital childhood cancer center. We are doing these collections in all grade levels and we hope to gather things to make the kids at duke happier and help raise awareness about childhood cancer. This chart shows the steps that we will take in order to achieve this goal.
Making fundraisers/websites aren't the only way we could help. We are collecting donations for the hospitals and the children getting treatment there. Donations give money to the hospitals so they can continue giving toys and necessary items to the patients. We are also gathering toys and books so they can enjoy their stay at that hospital. All children deserve to have a happy and non-stressful childhood no matter what they can going through. By donating, we as students are giving back and helping those in need.
Our goal for hospital service is to bring in more profit/donations as well as raising awareness. We thought this was an important subject to provide service to and help because not many people understand what these children are going through. We plan on contributing specifically asked for supplies such as medical kits, scrapbooks, movies, gift cards and games. We also want to make people recognize that cancer is something that has a huge impact on lives. Not only do we want to make a positive change in the patients lives, but we want others to feel moved by our accomplishments. In order to know we have met this goal, we will have reached our expected point of $1500 & needed donations, as well as given children with cancer a happier, and overall better life.