Monday, September 23, 2013

Jordan Taylor's FIGHT

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month. Former Michigan All-American Jordan Taylor has a passion for making a difference for kids with cancer, and she has even established her own foundation, called FIGHT, to make an even bigger impact. I asked Jordan to share how FIGHT got started; why this cause is so close to her heart; and how her organization raises money. I strongly encourage each and every person that reads this to consider making a donation to FIGHT, and help support childhood cancer research.

Additionally, the video just below is incredible, and I highly recommend it to any and everyone.

FIGHT was kind of a process of a few things. I lost many family members to cancer, including my dad at the beginning of my junior year at Michigan. I've seen far too many lives torn apart by cancer, so I just wanted to do more. At UM, we did an annual fundraising event for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer. In my senior year I made it a goal to raise the most money, specifically beating Hutch since she always raised the most. I accomplished that goal and that year we beat our team goal by a substantial amount. That accomplishment sparked a motivation to do more for me. During my time at UM, I was a part of a program called From The Heart. The program was organized by former student athletes and arranged student athletes to visit C.S. Mott children's hospital at UM. I didn't get to attend as frequently as I wished due to our practice schedule but whenever we ended early, my classmates & I would rush to make the time. It was in that program that we encountered peoples amazing stories of tragedy, perseverance, & hope. I met some of the most amazing people in my life, full of positivity & guts in that hospital. Childhood cancer seems to be a taboo in our society. People dont want to think about children fighting for their lives at such a young age, with very low hope for survival. Childhood cancer receives under 3% of the American Cancer Society budget, while breast cancer receives around 30%. This extreme gap is a bit disturbing. Breast cancer has become the "fashionable" choice for donations. Awareness walks, sporting events, slogans, all seem to be geared towards breast cancer. While it is a great cause, it is seemingly the only one people are willing to donate to or aware of. I'd really like for child hood cancer to have the same level of action connected to awareness. It isn't enough to know and recognize that it exists, we must do something about it. Through my experiences of promoting the cause, I have met some amazing children who have had their childhood stolen from them because of this disease. What a lot of people do not realize is there is no explanation for pediatric cancer. They have yet to find a reasoning or source of cancer in children. FIGHT donates all proceeds to the pediatric cancer unit at C.S. Mott children's hospital. In less than a year we were able to turn a profit & give our first check to the hospital. People can donate directly to the hospital by visiting Simply click on DONATE tab & there you can donate money, purchase shirts or ribbons, and even order a customized item of your choice. Again, 100% of the proceeds go to the pediatric cancer unit. There are also events through out the year called So You Think You Can Hit? during which you can step in the batters box & face me for a small donation to FIGHT. These events have been a tremendous success, raising up to $1000 in less than an hour. They are a lot of fun, as well. During the next NPF season I'm hoping to do several in different cities.

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