What is Letters to the Editor
This PAC2 Initiative will focus on PAC2 members contacting local and national media (websites, newspapers, news magazines, etc) to seek awareness and recognition of September as National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.
A similar PAC2 Initiative resulted in over 50 articles being published and a wonderful photojournalism piece in the Boston Globe, The BIg Picture - Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.
What Can I Do
Please take the time to write the media. Locally and nationally. Tell your story. Give the stats and talk about funding issues. Better yet, tell YOUR story and your CHILD'S story. Your passion will come through, be very compelling, and your voice will be heard!
This will help raise awareness. With awareness comes funding. With funding comes research. With research comes a cure. Here's some example language you can cut and paste:
September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. This month and every month, nearly 1,200 kids will be diagnosed, and nearly 250 children will die from cancer, the #1 disease killer of kids in the US. Childhood cancer cure rates have plateaued in the past decade. About 1 in 300 American children will be diagnosed with cancer before age 20. Survivors face a 2/3 chance of long-term health effects (e.g., secondary cancers, major organ damage).
According to Dr. Eugenie Kleinerman, Head of the Division of Pediatrics, Children's Cancer Hospital at MD Anderson Cancer Center: "Curing childhood cancer is the equivalent of curing breast cancer in terms of productive life years saved." Yet childhood cancer is considered rare.
Despite these horrible facts childhood cancer research is vastly underfunded. Most current treatments for children with cancer were developed over 25 years ago and not one new drug has been introduced to treat childhood cancer in the last 20 years. More research is desperately need to find less-toxic and more effective treatments for our kids. Only a 100% cure rate is acceptable for our children! Yet federal funding is less than 4% of the National Cancer Institute's budget. Private research by industry, the major funder of adult cancer research, is virtually non-existent because childhood cancer is considered rare and non-profitable.
Please, visit [insert charity of your choice] who is helping fund more research to find the cure for childhood cancer.
[Obviously insert your story as appropriate.]
Also consider there facts on Childhood Cancer (courtesy of Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation)
Who Should I Write?
To find a comprehensive list of media emails visit this link on the CureSearch for Children's Cancer's webpage.
Or use these e-mail address links:
TODAY - Today@NBCUNI.com
Nightly News with Brian Williams - Nightly@NBC.com
Dateline NBC - Dateline@NBCUNI.com
Newsweek - Editors@newsweek.com
Thanks to all PAC2 members for all you do. Good luck with your letters!
Upon receipt of the message below, the editor of Harlem World asked me if there is any September Awareness activity planned in Harlem NY. I promised to find out, and think he will cover if we can. Can anyone help with info?
the 'number' truly is a source of a bit of confusion. Right now It seems to be generally accepted that each year around 13,500 children are diagnosed with cancer in the US. That equals 36.9 kids per day or around 46 kids every school day.
The latest data I've seen is from the Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975–2007, published in the Journal of the NCI in March 2011. It states that in 2007 there were 14,119 cases of childhood cancer (ages 0-19). That would equal 39 per day. One's too many.