Anne Buckless via Crowdrise
March 30, 2012
BENEFITING: MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL
ORGANIZER: MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL
EVENT: 2012 Boston Marathon
EVENT DATE: Apr 16, 2012
Last year on April 14th I agreed to be my roommate's plus one for the MGH Marathon Team's pre-race pasta dinner. At the dinner they honored and remembered all of the children and family members who have suffered from, or were currently battling cancer who inspired the runners. There wasn't a dry eye in the house.
The ceremony was so touching that my casual thoughts about running the marathon to raise money for the hospital's children's cancer program became solid plans. There were so many first time runners, and also seasoned marathoners that continue to run the marathon year after year and each had their own inspiring story. I was especially impressed with a girl named Kristen who was a freshman in college, and had been one of the patients of the program ten years earlier, now running the marathon as a cancer free survivor.
Cancer touches us all at some point in our lives, but I can't imagine being a child who knows no other life than one that includes cancer treatments and frequent visits to the hospital for appointments. That is the life of my Patient Partner Helen, who is just five years old. She's battling Leukemia (and so far winning!!). Helen is sweet and shy, and when I call her and she can't come to the phone because she's having a bad day with her treatments it tears my heart in two. She's only five, she doesn't even really understand yet that most kids dont have to grow up this way.
Please donate, with your assistance and the great strides the hospital is making in cancer research we can make sure that in the future no five year olds have to know what it's like to battle cancer.
MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL wrote -
About the Marathon Team
Since 1998, with the partnership of John Hancock Financial, the Mass General Marathon Team has raised over $6.7 million to support the pediatric hematology-oncology program at MassGeneral Hospital for Children (MGHfC). Funds raised are directed to cancer care and research initiatives that enhance the quality of life for the hospital’s youngest cancer patients. Apply to run on the 2012 Mass General Marathon Team today!
The MassGeneral Marathon Team is centered around the Marathon Patient-Partner Program, in which runners are paired with patients undergoing cancer treatment at MGHfC. When our runners set out on Boston’s grueling 26.2-mile course, they not only raise funds and awareness for pediatric cancer research; they inspire and bring hope to the youngest patients we serve.
Last year, 50 children undergoing treatment were paired with Mass General runners. Some runners take part to support young patients they already know and love while others bond with a courageous child they have never met through the Patient-Partner Program. At an emotional pre-race pasta party and ceremony on the night preceding the marathon, runners presented a medal of honor to their patient-partner. It symbolizes a shared personal commitment in the fight against pediatric cancer, and represents all the hope we have that our efforts at Mass General will lead to a cure for this devastating disease.
The Child-Life Program
The Child-Life Program within the Division of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at MGHfC benefits every year from the funds raised by the Marathon Team. The program utilizes therapeutic play — including music and art therapy, massage and acupuncture — to help pediatric cancer patients and their families cope emotionally and developmentally with their illnesses. This year, more patients than ever before utilized Child-Life services, an indication of the growing popularity of the programming, the recognition of its importance and the program’s ability to continue to expand its offerings — thanks in large part to philanthropic dollars.
Learn more about the causes we support and the pediatric hematology-oncology program at MGHfC at the MassGeneral Hospital for Children web site.