I started this blog to give myself a place to express something other than my identity as a parent who went through the childhood cancer experience, but I cannot stop coming back to it. It is the experience that lasted nearly as long as my college degree, feels like a PhD, and is in my face every year during annual (praise be she is healthy) followup appointments.
It is something that I want others to know about because like the Mom in this little video clip, before I entered that world, I assumed there was a lot more money going to childhood cancer research than there actually is. This clip does not have any really hard to look at images like some of the cancer videos out there and is more about awareness, so take a look: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cftbut7nkXA
For those who want more perspective, here is a great podcast from November 2011 about children’s oncology funding, appropriately titled: “The F-Word in Pediatric Cancer Research”
Here’s the bottom line from the podcast:
Dr. Pat Reynolds puts government spending on the number one disease killer of children in the US in perspective, comparing the tiny $200M spent on pediatric cancer research to the foreign aid budget of $22B (less than 1%). For example, $1.6B goes to Egypt alone. The COG budget is a mere $46M. The DOD budget is $700B. Dr Lionel Chow mentions an enlightening fact – private donations to St Jude exceed $600M per year, on top of the givers’ paying taxes. This is 3 times the entire NCI budget for pediatric cancer research for all institutions in the US.
If anyone out there would like to contribute, here is a list of some of the organizations that DO contribute to pediatric cancer research, since our federal government only contributes 4% of its entire cancer budget to those under age 20:
There are many fabulous organizations that contribute to advocacy and assistance for childhood cancer families, but the ones I am listing are major ones specifically contributing to research.
I would like to focus on something lighter, like the fact President Obama apparently yesterday stopped by one of my favorite local walking places for some pie as a side jaunt from his visit to Boeing’s 787. Shows you how far out of the news loop a working mama can be!