Tastemaker's Trunk:: Why we support The Cure Starts Now
If you wonder why we are hosting a fundraiser for pediatric brain cancer, then let me introduce you to Lauren Hill, a 19 year-old college basketball player who lost her battle with brain cancer two weeks ago. Lauren’s diagnosis was DIPG which is a rare and terrible form of pediatric brain cancer. DIPG has no cure in spite of 250 drug trials since it officially became a named disease 30 years ago. DIPG is so difficult to treat that doctors and researchers believe that if we can find the cure to this cancer, we may have the home-run cure for all cancer! Lauren Hill’s case was unusual because of her age. Most DIPG patients are around 7-9 years old. Children with DIPG are not only young, but they lose their ability to speak as the tumor progresses. Because of Lauren was older, she was able to express to doctors how the tumor made her body feel (for example, numbness in a foot or arm.) Small children with DIPG are not always able to articulate this. Lauren actually said that if anyone had to have the disease she was glad it was her because she could become the voice for the voiceless. I’m not sure I would have had such a courageous outlook at that age!
Lauren’s story caught the attention of ESPN and every major national network. With her platform she was not only able to be the voice for children with DIPG, but she was able to exceed her $1M goal and raised $1.2 M for The Cure Starts Now Foundation. The foundation is putting this to good use and this year they will fund $2.5 M in DIPG research.Tastemaker’s Trunk :: Why We
Support The Cure Starts Now
This past weekend I attended the symposium of the DIPG Collaborative which The Cure Starts Now began in 2013. Every two years, the symposium brings together researchers and doctors from all over the world and asks them to collaborate together to find the cure. It was a hopeful feeling to look at the huge conference room full of researchers, most of whom are new to the field of DIPG. I am the director of one of Alabama’s chapters of The Cure Starts Now Foundation and I am proud to be a part of a foundation with integrity and a strong mission statement to find the home-run cure.
I hope that with the Tastemakers Trunk, we can get one step closer to finding that cure so that no more parents have to hear the terrible news my husband and I had to hear. These children like Lauren are my heroes and they deserve for us to be their voice and fight with them to find the cure they need!
(to learn more about my personal story of a child diagnosed with DIPG, click HERE)