DOWNTOWN SAVANNAH, GA – This is the fourth year CURE childhood cancer, who specializes in funding and research for pediatric cancer, held their Christmas party. More than spreading the holiday spirit, the event provides families a window letting their kids be normal, not worrying about medicines or treatments and just being moms, dads, sons and daughters.
“We just hope we can bring a smile to their faces,” says Mandy Garola Parent and Family services manager at CURE.
The holiday party has everything your typical celebration would entail; candy, Santa and Christmas ornaments. However the party goers are all families who have one thing in common, one of their kids have or have been diagnosed with cancer.
“It’s heartwarming, we came to this event and didn’t expect half of this,” says Naomi Beckman who’s daughter has cancer.
It’s the stories shared by parents like Naomi Beckman that bring these families together. She never expected to even be at the party and that’s because at this time a year ago, cancer wasn’t on their mind.
“We literally got diagnosed the second week of January so this time last year she was a happy normal kid,” says Beckman talking about her five year old daughter Ava who has a form of leukemia.
Over the past year, normal for the Beckman’s became doctors offices, chemo and radiation.
That’s why they joined CURE, to be with other families and kids dealing with the tough diagnosis along with the emotional days of coping with the disease.
“It’s kind of a community that once you’re apart of it, it’s a club you never ask to be in but once you’re in, you’re in and you just want to love on the other families that are in treatment and let them know that they’re not alone,” says Garola who also has a daughter that is a cancer survivor.
CURE estimates that more than forty thousand children undergo treatments for cancer each year.
It’s events like this that give the kids and their families a chance to forget for a few hours and gives them the other “medicine” of joy and holiday spirit.