Do you realize that, in the last 20 years, there have been only two drugs approved by the FDA for childhood cancers that were initially studied in children? That’s out of 146 drugs approved drugs for cancer treatments in the last twenty years. In fact, many do not realize that cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children and adolescents in the United States. (Source: National Cancer Institute).
Last night, Erin Griffin died from DIPG, the brain tumor she had been battling for two and a half years. Erin was just 14 years old when she died. You can see Erin pictured to the right with her friend, Gabby, who also died from DIPG in October 2013 when she was just 10 years old. Two sweet girls, taken far too soon because there is simply not enough research dollars going toward childhood cancers. Did you know that only 4% of the National Cancer Institute’s Budget for cancer research is allocated toward childhood cancer research? And, if you think that these kids get the short end of the stick because childhood cancers are rare, think again. Childhood cancers have risen 29% in the past twenty years. (Source: National Cancer Institute). Since we were made aware of childhood cancer in 2007, we’ve learned personally that childhood cancer is not rare — just read our blog post from September of 2013, childhood cancer is not rare.
Our apologies if this post isn’t pretty, but childhood cancer is far from pretty. And, until that changes, we will continue to #GoGold in September, sharing stories about these children that have touched our hearts so dearly. We will continue to be a voice for these children because the majority of the people doing so currently are the family members fighting for their kid’s life, or have lost their child to cancer, and that just doesn’t seem fair. Unfortunately, we don’t know of a way to make it pretty. We can only make it a journey of hope and to celebrate the wins in this arena with triumphant celebration! Learning of a “No Evidence of Disease” (NED) in one of these children fills us with so much hope and excitement that we are giddy for days. We will continue to pray for these children, and to share the facts about childhood cancer, until a cure is found.
Here’s what we are doing to help, and we will share a few ways you can help below!
- We will be donating $1 from every haircut in September to the childhood cancer dream team through The Truth 365.
- Again, this year, instead of a cut-a-thon which only lasts one day, we wanted to do something that people could participate the entire month. Similar to the Pink
Hair for Hope campaign, we are launching a Gold Hair for a Cure campaign. Come and have a SO.CAP gold extension added to your locks for just $10 and we will donate 100% of our profit to finding a cure for pediatric cancer. When people ask why you have a gold hair extension, tell them about Pediatric Cancer Action Month! (And, we have contacted SO.CAP USA to see if they can make this a national campaign. We’ll keep you posted!)
- We will be asking every person checking out if they would like to add $1, $3 or $5 to their ticket to be donated to pediatric cancer research funding.
- We will be supporting Camp Sunshine in January 2015, and a bunch of us from the salon will be taking the Virginia Polar Dip to support Camp Sunshine. More details to come on that later 🙂
Here’s what you can do:
- Participate in CureFest in Washington DC on September 21, 2014. The festival is FREE and the walk is just $20. We will be there again this year showing people how easy a Crazy Hair Day for Kids’ Cancer fundraisers are!
- Take a Crazy Hair Day for Kids’ Cancer flyer to your school and have your school host a no-cost fundraiser. It’s so very simple. Kids get to wear their hair crazy for a day and they bring in a small donation. We have a flyer for preschool and elementary schools, and one for middle and high schools. When other kids ask why their hair is ‘crazy’ for the day, it’s a *great* opportunity for these kids to share why. Don’t have kids in school? Take a flyer to work and hang it in your office kitchen. And if you are not a client of ours, take the fliers to your salon. Share with your stylist or the owner of that salon. Get them involved in promoting this amazingly easy fundraiser.
- Donate to any one of the many organizations helping kids battling cancer. Here are just a few great ones we know about or have donated to in the past: The Band of Parents, The Isabella Santos Foundation, Journey 4 A Cure, Arms Wide Open Childhood Cancer Foundation, Stillbrave Childhood Cancer Foundation and the DC Candlelighters. Please do not think any amount is too small. If everyone gave $1, these organizations and the children they serve would benefit tremendously!
- Participate in a walk in Nova, at CureFest, or a run, or join Team Salon Khouri on our Virginia Polar dip. Come on, it will be fun — submerging into a little freezing water for less than one minute of your life for these kids sounds like a great way to have fun and spread awareness.
- Get involved through a social media outreach campaign through The Truth 365.
- Watch the Truth 365 Documentary to learn more about the state of pediatric cancer.
- Write your Congressperson, and ask him or her to sign The Pledge. We need more than 4% of federal cancer research dollars going toward pediatric cancers.
Hopefully one of these will speak to you. These kids do not have a voice. They are busy fighting for their lives. Be their voice, take action for them.