Tuesday, December 2, 2008

It isn't getting any better!

It has been five years since the beginning of Lunch for Life. It started out very simply. It was a desperate act. At that point we were 3 months into Sydney's treatment of stage IV neuroblastoma. I was scared, I was mad and I was frustrated.

I was frustrated because childhood cancer was the leading cause of death by disease in children. I was frustrated because neuroblastoma was the most common cancer found in infants. I was also frustrated because neuroblastoma was one of the deadliest of all childhood cancers.

Insult was added to injury when I realized that the NCI spent over $550 million on breast cancer, over $320 million on prostate cancer and less than $140 million on all 12 major classes of childhood cancer. Yes, that is only $140 million that had to be shared among almost 90 different childhood cancers.

Look at those numbers again.

That is how we fund this nation's number 1 killer of children by disease.

The disparity is not only in cancer. Did you know that cancer is a more common killer of children than aids, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, and asthma - combined? This is in direct contrast to the fact that we spend almost $600,000.00 research dollars for each child affected with aids and less than $20,000 for each child affected with cancer.

It is these huge discrepancies that beg me to want to make a difference. I want to scream it from the roof tops. I want everyone in the world to know these facts.

I want to level the playing field.

I want it to be OUR time.

For once,
  • instead of sending trillions of dollars overseas for war
  • instead of sending billions of dollars over to Africa to fight aids
  • instead of sending billions of dollars half way around the world to aid tsunami victims

I want it to be our time. I want it to be the time when Americans stood up for the number 1 cause of death by disease in Americas children. For once, I want our children to be the priority.

Today the economy is crashing. Banks are being bailed out for hundreds of billions of dollars and other industries are lining up to get their checks as well.

Once again, it won't be our time.

Worse yet, with the change in the economy, corporate giving and support are drying up. The big dollars from corporate America that we count on so much to help fund research are going, going - gone.

That leaves us. That leaves you and I and our lunch money. That is the last hope for these children and the last hope for a cure.

We need your help. We need you to write email. We need you to tell your friends. We need you to post on your blogs.

We need people to donate their lunches and we need them to do it with more fervor than ever before. If you gave a lunch last year I ask you to do the same and if you can afford it I beg you to do more. Do a lunch a month. Make a difference. It is only lunch. Yet, it means life for these children.

Promising research is sitting on the shelves. It will remain there unless we raise enough money to get it into these children.

There will be less trials and less options available to our children than there were last year if we don't stand up and make a difference.

Less children will receive life saving therapies unless we make a difference right now.

We need your help.

Please go to http://www.LunchforLife.org and donate your lunch.

Then, please ask all of your friends to do the same.

Your lunches and your words will save lives.

Today, everyone has a purpose.

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