My beloved, vivacious grandmother lost her two-year battle with cancer when I was ten. That year, I began fundraising to fight cancer.
Like you, over the years I’ve added many friends and family members to the list of those for whom I join the battle to fight cancer.
My passion and fervor to defeat this faceless killer has not dwindled in the nearly 20 years since my grandmother passed. One in two women and one in three men will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime. This year, we were reminded of the significant health disparities that exist in the United States. According to the American Cancer Society, Black Americans have the highest death rate and shortest survival of any racial/ethnic group in the US for most cancers. Moreover, Black men have the highest cancer incidence rate in America. Despite this, the percent of people from African descent in clinical trials for cancer treatments is meager.
In January, I was given the opportunity to work with the University of Maryland Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center (UMGCCC) in Baltimore, MD. I've never felt so personally compelled to raise money for a client. This time, it's personal, and it's extraordinary; so I will be running a 5K to support the Greenebaum Comprehensive Cancer Center in May. The work UMGCCC does for the Baltimore community and for cancer research is incredible; they
- Have provided 30,000+ free cancer screenings for the Baltimore community over the past 20 years
- Run clinical trials where minorities represent up to 56% of the clinical trial subjects (compared to 2% - 17% nationally), with the goal of creating novel treatment and outcomes for minorities
- Developed new life saving drugs for prostate and pancreatic cancer
- Are national leaders in immunotherapy with successful lymphoma and leukemia cellular therapies moving to trials for myeloma and solid tumors
- Worked with the University of Maryland School of Medicine to responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by repurposing drugs developed for Leukemia and bone marrow transplants to fight the deadly effects of the COVID infection
- Home of the class of drug called "aromatase inhibitors" which has changed the way breast cancer is treated around the world - reducing death from breast cancer by nearly 40% (invented by Drs. Angela and Harry Broadie)
These are only some of the reasons UMGCCC is well-positioned to make dramatic differences in the treatment of cancer across the spectrum, especially among those in underrepresented communities. That’s why I am asking you to please join me in supporting this life saving institution.
My goal is to raise $5,000. Together, I'm confident we can reach and exceed this goal.
Links to facts above:
One in two women and one in three men will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-basics/lifetime-probability-of-developing-or-dying-from-cancer.html
This year, we learned or were reminded of the drastic health disparities that exist if you are not of European descent in the United States: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/investigations-discovery/hospitalization-death-by-race-ethnicity.html
According to the American Cancer Society, collectively, Black Ameicans have the highest death rate and shortest survival of any racial/ethnic group in the US for most cancers. Moreover, Black men have the highest cancer incidence rate: https://www.cancer.org/content/dam/cancer-org/research/cancer-facts-and-statistics/cancer-facts-and-figures-for-african-americans/cancer-facts-and-figures-for-african-americans-2019-2021.pdf
Despite this, percent of people from African descent in clinical trials for cancer treatments is meager: https://www.managedhealthcareexecutive.com/view/african-americans-underrepresented-cancer-clinical-trials
Worked with the University of Maryland School of Medicine to responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by repurposing drugs developed for Leukemia and bone marrow transplants to fight the deadly effects of the COVID infection: https://www.medschool.umaryland.edu/news/2020/UM-School-of-Medicine-Begins-First-Innovative-Trial-of-Experimental-Stem-Cell-Therapy-to-Reduce-Deaths-in-Sickest-COVID-19-Patients.html