September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Our refrigerator is probably just like yours — covered in photos of family and friends, along with a calendar and some coupons to use at the grocery store.

There’s a section on ours, however, with photos of kids who have died of cancer.

For a little over five years, our oldest son has been fighting a brain tumor, and in that time, we’ve had far too many “little friends” and their families pass through our lives.

The real kicker is that these kids received the best care on the planet. The very best that science can do still isn’t enough; cancer remains the leading killer of children.

Just look at these survival numbers. St. Jude is leading the way in ridding the world of some terrible diseases. St. Jude makes their research and breakthroughs public, so kids well beyond the 7,800 seen each year here in Memphis can benefit.

The most unbelievable part is right in the organization’s mission statement:

The mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is to advance cures, and means of prevention, for pediatric catastrophic diseases through research and treatment. Consistent with the vision of our founder Danny Thomas, no child is denied treatment based on race, religion or a family’s ability to pay.

I know first-hand what this means. In five years, my family hasn’t paid a single dime for our son’s care and on-going rehabilitation. As soul-crushing as having a child with cancer is, I can’t imagine having to worry about life-altering debt or filing for bankruptcy as well.

There are a million good causes out there, but let’s make September about those kids on my refrigerator.

I’ve set up a St. Jude fundraising page that I will be linking to instead of RSS sponsors for the month of September. My goal is to raise $1,000 $2,500 $4,000 $6,000 $10,000 for the kids of St. Jude this month It takes $2 million a day to run the hospital and research center, so this is a drop in the bucket. Let’s make it our drop.