For the second year in a row, The Max Cure Foundation was invited to have a highly coveted window display in Rockefeller Center thanks to EHE International. Last year, Max Cure Foundation was selected as the children’s foundation out of 500 applicants, and the EHE International team was so moved by our display that they decided to honor the foundation again this December.
“EHE International is proud to support The Max Cure Foundation, an organization that strives to help children and their families when they are battling cancer,” says Deborah McKeever, President of EHE International. “We are pleased to be able to continue our partnership with MCF and help them raise awareness for pediatric cancer.”
There has never been a charity to receive this gift two years in a row. Thanks to their generous donation, Max Cure was able to showcase the faces of pediatric cancer to the 2.0 million visitors who travel to Rockefeller Center over the Holidays.
This December, The Max Cure Foundation display featured six children framed in Christmas ornaments, hanging next to powerful statistics which hopefully made a statement as to the reality of childhood cancers and the lack of research funding. Alexis’ beautiful smile brought people to tears as they learned she passed away from DIPG at the young age of four. Becca (Rebecca) fought the disease (Glioblastoma Multiforme) for seven years, succumbing to her cancer in the late 1990’s, less than one month before her 17th birthday. Erin was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in 2002 and fought bravely until she passed in 2009. Nathalie, age 16 is currently in active treatment with an experimental drug manufactured by Genetech. Conor is now considered a survivor of neuroblastoma, a diagnosis he received at only 18 months old. Buddy, only six years old, has brain cancer and is currently in treatment.
Recently, Max Cure Vice-Chairman, and Max’s Grandfather, Richard Plotkin visited the window with Becca’s mom, her aunt and her cousin with his wife. He stated, they were overwhelmed with emotion when they saw Becca’s photo hanging in the window with the five other children. They were all spellbound by the video which displayed the stories and photos of the six children highlighted in the window, plus countless others whose stories were broadcast to those visiting the City who elected to walk by the window in close proximity to the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree and the adjacent ice skating rink. Becca’s aunt, who was very close to Becca prior to her death, was shocked when she saw the statistics which MCF included in the window design. She commented she did not realize so many children in this country were diagnosed with cancer each year and was particularly surprised to learn that 98% of survivors experience side effects during the balance of their lives, with 35% of the children dying within 30 years of diagnosis (17% dying within five years of diagnosis).
In addition to the six children featured, we took the photos and stories of over 30 other children we shared during September, which is Childhood Cancer Awareness month, and turned it into a video tribute which played 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Our intention was to show the multiple faces of pediatric cancer and bring to light that pediatric cancers do not discriminate.
“We are grateful to EHE International for giving us this platform to raise awareness and at the same time, giving MCF a platform to receive donations so that it can continue to fulfill its mission of helping to fund research to find a cure and also supporting low income and military families with a child battling cancer,” said David Plotkin, Chairman, Max Cure Foundation. “Pediatric cancer afflicts almost 16,000 children annually in this country, with 380,000 pediatric cancer survivors living in the United States (98% of whom will experience long term side effects). Yet, childhood cancer is the most underfunded of cancers with only 4% of government spending funding pediatric cancer research,” he added.
MCF hopes that that the visibility from the EHE window will help raise awareness and much needed funds.