September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Although I have never personally experienced the pain that goes along with Childhood Cancer, I know others that have.
A couple of years ago, Andy Stanley gave a message where he asked, “What breaks your heart?” Whatever the answer to that question is for you, I recommend you go towards it. God’s calling you.
For me, cancer breaks my heart. More specifically, childhood cancer. I was transformed back in 2012 when I ran the St. Jude Marathon (ok, it was only the 5k) that was sponsored by Juice Plus+. I toured that hospital and weeped. On the day of the race, we ran through the campus, watching the children and families cheer for the runners. I will never forget that entire weekend and what it meant to me.
I have followed journeys of children who have since passed from this disease. I want to share two with you and if you are so compelled with what they stand for, please consider donating to help this cause. One that impacted me greatly was Kylie Myers, a beautiful 12 year old girl that lost her battle with Ewing’s Sarcoma, a type of aggressive bone cancer. Kylie was known for her smile, that radiated so much joy, even through her painful journey. Kylie had a dream that there would be more funding for childhood cancer, and a cure. Her family continues this mission today. To learn more about Kiley’s journey and to donate, you can visit Smiley for Kiley.
Another was Mary Elizabeth Paris, a local 12 year old that lost her battle with AML, an aggressive form of leukemia. You can learn more about Mary Elizabeth’s story and donate to CURE Childhood Cancer via this link, Mary Elizabeth’s Story.
The fact is – cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children.
- 1 in 285 children will be diagnosed with cancer
- 2500 children will die annually from cancer
These are statistics that I do not take lightly. God ‘broke my heart’ with this, and if it breaks yours too, we can come together and do something good.
There are two organization that I want to point you to, both near to my heart. A dear friend of mine, Ginny Starr, works alongside Chantel Adams with ForeverWe. Chantel & Ginny have an amazing mission with the company they have created. Knowing that kids use toys to tell a story, Chantel & Ginny created a unique doll for kids going through a cancer journey. This doll not only helps the child going through the journey, but also helps kids who care about them, helping them to have an understanding of what they are going through. Please please check them out, as they are doing such beautiful work and have the biggest hearts. You can purchase a doll for someone in need or donate one as well. Their Jewel doll is $39.99.
Our family has been involved with Happy Caps for the past 2 years. Happy Caps’ mission is to gift cheerful handmade hats to people suffering hair loss due to cancer treatment – or any medical condition – to keep their head warm, to remind them each time they wear it that there are people who care and to make sure that when people stare, it’s because they have on such a cool hat! Julia Miller, one of the Directors of the organization, shared the mission with my husband Jeff, who then shared it with our daughter, Abbie. Abbie felt compelled to learn how to crochet so she could begin donating caps. She has been doing this now for over a year and has loved it! Happy Caps seeks volunteers to make hats, but also seeks donations to help with the process.
I believe that we can come together for the good of these families and children. These organizations mentioned above are only a couple out of many many good ones that are doing good work.
As for me, my request for each of you – focus on prevention. Feed your children well. It matters. I share this with you in the hopes that you will take the time to look into how a diet rich in fruits & vegetables can help you on your journey to wellness, and how Juice Plus+ can play a huge part in that.
God bless all those that suffer and all those that give their hearts to this cause.
In good health & healing,