Keeping our children safe seems to be a natural thought. We take safety measures every day to protect our children. This includes things like bike helmets, sport protective gear, life jackets, seat belts, smoke free homes, and providing safe environments.
As a mother of a child with a melanoma diagnosis, it has become my mission to remind others about sun safety. Graham was diagnosed with melanoma at the age of 9. He could not even pronounce it. He called called it, “lemonola.” Graham’s melanoma was not sun related, but as I learn more, I have a hard time watching parents neglect some very simple safety measures to minimize the risk of skin cancer.
Graham also feels strongly about sun safety education and melanoma awareness. Graham recently was featured in an article that highlighted the importance of sun safety in teens. Graham wanted to share that boys need to be safe too.
Research is also important, Since Graham’s diagnosis, he has raised over $100,000. This past year he has decided to partner with the Melanoma Research Foundation and hopefully raise enough money to sponsor a pediatric melanoma grant.
No fundraiser is too small, every dollar raised is important. Graham spent some time talking to his congressional leaders about increasing NIH funding. He always says, “If a kid can raise $100,000, imagine what you can do.” As powerful as that is, he has classmates and strangers making and selling bracelets for $1.00. He tells his peers, “Imagine if this is the dollar that funds the hour of research that finds a cure.”
Cheryl and Graham are the founders of Graham's Gift. Graham raises money and awareness by making and selling rubber band bracelets. Each bracelet is $1.00 and has a yellow bead that represents Childhood Cancer Awareness. It is Graham's hope that no child will ever have to go through what he has gone through, and that he will raise enough awareness and funds to make a difference!