Friday August 15th, 2014 – The Empire State Building, a shining and shimmering symbol of America in all of its finest industrial and business splendor, the most well-known spire of the New York City skyline, will illuminate green, white, and orange in honor of India Day. (more…)
First, as background context on myself: I have extensive clinical experience in oncology pharmacy, having interned for over four years at a major cancer center; my career is as an oncology writer focusing on pharma/biotech-sponsored projects in the area of adult oncology, being called upon to help researchers develop data presentations at congresses (example ASCO – American Society of Clinical Oncology) and peer-reviewed journal publications for pharma sponsored clinical trials. (more…)
Each year on the Jewish High Holy day of Rosh Hashanah, which is the beginning of the Jewish New Year, I read a prayer in Temple that states that on that day, it is written in the book of life who in the succeeding year will live and who will die. That phrase has taken on a less abstract and more secular meaning as I venture into the world of childhood cancers and as I do so, am invited occasionally to take an active role in which children with cancer would live and which would die. (more…)
From the very moment the boys, Alex and Jacob – 8 respectively, met Max Plotkin – 11 years old, they knew they wanted to get involved in his cause. The story of Max has been in headlines across the country; battling cancer at such a young age and now (cancer-free) fighting with his family and The Max Cure Foundation to bring comfort and charity to low-income and military families across the country fighting to overcome pediatric cancers themselves. The boys have taken inspiration from Max’s bravery and have turned it in to action for the betterment of children and families fighting for their lives.
The Max Cure Foundation coordinates a program entitled “Dunk Your Kicks” which takes used athletic shoes and recycles them, giving new footwear to developing countries and in turn receiving money that goes directly in to the coffers of pediatric cancer funding for research, preventative medicine, and solace that families caring for children in the hospital so desperately need. It keeps shoes out of dumpsters and landfills, and provides footwear for people on the other side of the planet who may never have the comfort. Further, it is not asking of any monetary contributions out of the pockets of hard working people, but rather the benefits are three-fold – getting rid of shoes they were going to throw out anyway, giving the hope of a better life to a cancer patient, and a chance at a more sustainable life to a person across the globe.
Jacob and Alex began a shoe drive with the tremendous support of the staff at the Driftwood Daycamp in Melville, NY. Culminating in some exciting Sneaker Games while families of the children, staff of the Driftwood Day Camp, and Founder of the Max Cure Foundation David Plotkin, celebrated the boys’ accomplishments with a dunk challenge breaking records that made the kids extremely excited! In the mission statement the boys have shared they state:
“We have met Max and his bravery is an inspiration to us. Luckily he is now 11 years old and cancer-free, thanks to the help he received from doctors and scientists. But other children are still sick, and that is why we all need to work together to help them. Help us raise money for kids who have cancer by donating old shoes. Please ask your mom, dads, and other family members to clean out their closets and donate sneakers they don’t need anymore. … If we all work together, we can make a difference and help other kids and their families, and feel really good about what we are doing.”
Having loving parents, moms, dads, grandparents, giving friends, neighbors, co-workers, supportive camp counselors, teachers, and inspirations like the Plotkin’s can help two young boys show their love for strangers – Children they have never met but want to help – While realizing their aspirations for philanthropy can be achieved to such great heights. Over 1,000 pair of sneakers makes an impact that is far greater than the Max Cure Foundation can show appreciation for. Alex and Jacob are the heroes in this headline story and are becoming an inspiration to others.