IT’S SEPTEMBER-PEDIATRIC CANCER AWARENESS MONTH!
We hope this finds you doing well during this unprecedented time! If you weren’t already aware, September is pediatric cancer awareness month, and it also happens to be the month we celebrate Maxwell’s birthday. He would have been 3 years old on September 18th.
To say that this year is different in terms of what we had hoped to accomplish by this point in the year, and how life itself looks would be such an incredible understatement. The Maxwell James Oskam Foundation made the decision to cancel both of our fundraising events in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic. Choosing the safety and wellbeing of all those who support us was an extremely simple, but difficult decision for us. Simple because the safety of our supporters is paramount, and difficult since because of that decision we are extraordinarily far behind in our fundraising efforts.
While a great deal of things in the country stopped due to COVID, unfortunately pediatric cancer did not. It blazed forward with the usual reckless disregard for the most precious of human lives, taking the lives of our children without hesitation. As a matter of fact, just in the time between the day our first fundraiser was supposed to be held (March 22, 2020) and today, 7,489 children have been diagnosed with cancer.
Over 7 THOUSAND families changed forever like ours was. Over 7 thousand families have been shaken to their core, and held helpless because of two things now. 1-a global pandemic that has changed daily life as we know it, and now 2-they are dealing with the confirmation that their child has been diagnosed with an often deadly disease.
Because of COVID, no new treatment options have been introduced, and worse, it became increasingly difficult for these families to receive and receive the answers they need, treatment plans moved forward at an alarmingly slow pace, and in a lot of cases for these children and their families, progress stopped short, hope for a cure or more effective treatment options was postponed. When a child is placed in the fight for their life, there is no time to spare. Right now-this moment, those 7,489 children are forced to receive the same decade-old watered-down adult chemotherapy.
It has taken parents to move the needle with pediatric cancer. And that is no surprise, what are our most precious gifts? We would move heaven and earth for every moment of the rest of my life if we could have Maxwell here with us, healed and healthy. There is nothing we wouldn’t do for him, and that continues with a ferocity that we have never experienced now that he has gone to Heaven. It is our solemn promise that we will not rest until we can change the story for every single family that we meet that receives a diagnosis like we did.
BE THE CHANGE
In lieu of both our 2020 fundraising events, we are rolling out our "Be the Change" fundraising campaign for the entire month of September! Every day, we will share facts, figures, photos, and insight about pediatric cancer, in the hopes that what we share will open as many eyes as possible to the dire need for change.
It is our hope to raise enough funds during this campaign, that we will be able to fund not only one life changing treatment option for children fighting neuroblastoma, but TWO in 2020.
We know this is a lofty goal, especially in times like this. But we are doubling down on our commitment to fight, no matter what. These children need our help, and the time to be the change is now.
So we ask you, if you are able-please help us on our journey towards funding treatment options for children fighting pediatric cancer, for children fighting neuroblastoma like Maxwell was, and for children to receive the hope of tomorrow through innovative treatment options developed today!
To donate, please visit: https://www.maxwelljamesoskam.org and click on the yellow “donate” oval at the bottom of the page.
Thank you for your willingness to walk this journey with us, we are eternally grateful!