I'm shaving my head, and I'll be 9 months pregnant at the time! Why? As part of St. Baldrick's, a charity event where volunteers shave their heads in solidarity with children who have lost their hair during their battle with cancer. Cancer is a leading killer of children. Our nephew, Nathan Gentry, died a month after his seventh birthday in July 2007, a victim of Neuroblastoma.
Our friend, Elisabeth Villavicencio, MD, PH.D., is a pediatric oncologist, and says this about funding for research of childhood cancers.
Sadly, it is harder than ever to get research funding. Most NIH grants are unfunded. Companies that develop drugs typically focus their research on common adult cancers, since they need to be able to recoup their research and development costs through drug sales. Since pediatric cancer is rare, there will never be profit in developing drugs for this small but very important group of patients. Thus, private funding is critical to finding cures for childhood cancer.
You can help save children's lives by pledging me to shave my head as part of a St. Baldrick's event on March 16. You can pledge online, by phone, or download a form to mail. Just click here.
The above picture is my before picture. I promise an after picture, as well.