My mom and I had an idea this year (Sept. 2008) to get gold balloons, write "Childhood Cancer Awareness" as well as my daughter's name and dx on it, and we wrote the names of more children who are fighting Cancer or are now angels because of Cancer and/or its treatments on other balloons. We then folded them up and included them into our letters to the Senators on the Defense Appropriations Committee.

My idea for next year is to find a national corporate sponsor (actually, more than one would be great) who would be willing to donate any or all of the proceeds from their gold balloon sales in the month of September to CureSearch. That way, when we adorn our mailboxes or the front of our homes on the next "National Childhood Cancer Awareness day" with balloons, that money will go towards much-needed research.

This year, another mom who participated in our balloon movement Sept. 13th told me that her neighbor asked her whose birthday it was. My hope is that next year, and in future years, no one will ask that question when they see those gold balloons on National Childhood Cancer Awareness day. They'll see the names, remember the children, and send their donations to Alex's Lemonade, CureSearch, or another worthy organization.

I'm already working on finding willing sponsors, but I'm wondering if anyone would like to join me in this effort?

Thanks,
Amy Bucher
proud mom of ^^Arden^^ (forever 3)
and Grayson (almost 2)

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I'm attaching a pic of my mailbox from this year. I know some people had balloons all over their front lawns and large gold ribbons on their doors. I couldn't quite capture it on camera (because our mailboxes are far apart,) but every single one of my neighbors had at least one gold balloon on their mailbox on Sept. 13, 2008.
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Hi Amy,
I will be happy to help. Just tell me what you need and hand me the envelopes to start filling up... I also have a couple of ideas: to do cancer education for kids in schools and to start a volunteer fair for kids in high schools in the area. Ultimately, my goal is to bring awareness to the community - but also get kids involved in volunteering and raising money. Are you interested?
Thanks,
Sherry
Hi Sherry,
I have a power point presentation that I made for my girls classrooms. Sadly,
it took some extra effort to get the school to agree. But when I gave the presentation to the two 5th grade classrooms it made a huge diffrence. Everyone of the 60 kids gave me their complete attention. After the presentation hands went up and very good questions were asked. My girls gained a new found respect from their peers that day.
If you would like help putting together a program for diffrent classrooms I would love to help. Also, Alex"s lemonaide stand has a ciriculum already to go on their website.
Amy,

I love the gold balloons. I put it out as a suggestion for the symbol for childhood cancer instead of the standard gold (everyone sees as yellow) ribbons. Putting them out on mailboxes fro NCCAD is great. I also think the gold balloon lends itself nicely to stores the sell/then post those things for charities, like Chili's does with the peppers.... Keep up the great work and let me know if there is anyhting I can do to help!
UPDATE!! UPDATE!!!

We might have a few corporations on board to donate proceeds from Gold balloon sales in September to CureSEarch!! I'm looking for MORE contacts. PLEASE, if you know anyone in management at any grocery store, card store, or party store chains, please contact me!! I have all of the materials, and CureSearch is on board, ready to help advertise this event!!!

It's happening, everyone!! Gold balloons will fly in honor of our warriors and angels on National Childhood Cancer day and other days in September!!! Money will go towards RESEARCH and reaching the day when all childhood cancers are 100% cureable!!!

Please reply asap if you have any contacts for me. THANK YOU!!!
THE GOLD BALLOONS WILL FLY THIS SEPT!

ACME Markets is on board -- the CEO, Judy Spires, forwarded my request to her Communications Manager, and they are forming a team to make sure this happens. Those of you in the Mid-Atlantic states who have ACME markets -- look for the Gold Balloon Fundraiser to benefit CureSearch this September (2009)!!
Fantastic!!
Awesome, I'm in Ohio & we do have Acme Markets here.
Amy you have to keep us updated on this, so we can give it the right coverage when it happens. Great job. thank you
Amy, I live in Easton PA. I would love to help you out in any way possible. I know some managers up here in the lehigh valley at Wegmans and also at The Giant. I will see what I can do. You can email me at mplatinum25@aol.com. Let me know what you want me to do and it will be done.
Michelle
MIchelle: Thanks so much!!

Wegman's has already turned us down (preferring to commit to more "local" efforts, not national ones, interestingly (I know they do a huge fundraiser for Cure Kids Cancer which is housed in Rochester, NY, their home-base.) The told me to contact them if we wanted a lump sum donation to CHOP or something. Disappointing, but at least they are philanthropic and sympathetic to our cause.

In order to make it a multi-store (entire chain) effort, I'm trying to get contacts in the corporate (main) office, so if the manager at the Giant in Lehigh Valley knows someone at corporate who would be a good contact (able to get things done or make a good case to the C.E.O for why they should get involved), please pass along the info. to my email. I have all of the materials (my own letter/pamphlet and sponsorship/marketing materials from CureSearch) ready to go, and I've already sent packets to the CEOs of most grocery stores and card companies that sell balloons. New contacts may bring new interest!

Thanks for offering to help!

Best,
Amy
rabucher@gmail.com

P.S. My husband actually works up in Easton -- lovely area!
If you go to http://www.jhscout.org you will see a post about how Giant Food has raised $1.5 million to "Strike Out" Childhood Cancer for the 2009 Triple Winner Game.

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