We can’t think of a better way to celebrate Isabella’s birthday eve. Today ISF officially committed to bringing an MIBG treatment room home to Levine Children’s Hospital. Happy birthday sweet girl… You are sorely missed but still changing the world and helping us move the needle in your honor.
So raising one million dollars is a HUGE goal. But we have one HUGE advancement that we are trying to bring to local kids. Isabella received MIBG therapy in Philadelphia when she was filled with cancer and it destroyed it all. We want to bring this treatment to Charlotte and new promising trials are testing the effectiveness of this treatment earlier in the diagnosis. This could be a game changer for our local kids and we are excited to make this happen. Did we mention that it has low side effects and is pain free? Yep.
We will be educating our supporters all year long about MIBG and we hope you will help make this happen.
💜 #action #beatgrowlive #clt
We are SOOOO excited for this announcement today!
Tia Wackerhagen comes to ISF after serving as Gifts Officer for the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra. Tia attended Duke University where she studied nonprofit management. Since coming to Charlotte in 2010 she has severed on several boards and acted as the consultant for area nonprofits. Tia and her husband Matt are proud to have 4 amazing children. Together they like to hike, enjoy the outdoors, travel and experience local art and culture.
Tia comes on at an exciting time for us as we are growing at a pace that is a little alarming. You will start seeing her at our events and may be lucky enough to have coffee with her. 😉
Welcome, Tia to the ISF team!
Our Corporate Sponsors are a HUGE part of our fight against Pediatric Cancer. Without their support, we could not continue to grow and make an impact in the cancer community. It is because of them that we are able to put on the wonderful event that we do, year after year, to honor Isabella and all children that fight. We are so humbled by and grateful for all of the businesses and their volunteers that came together to help make the 9th Annual 5k/10k For Kids Cancer such a huge success. It truly takes a village to make it happen and we are forever grateful to each and every one of you. It is our honor to work with you and hope to continue the fight together. We want to take the opportunity to once again thank all of our 2016 Race Sponsors for your support and hope to continue our partnership in the future. (Photo Courtesy of Beth Wade Photography)
COMMUNITY BLOOD CENTER OF THE CAROLINAS
LEVINE CHILDRENS HOSPITAL
CHARLOTTE EYE EARS NOSE AND THROAT
BULL ENGINEERED PRODUCTS
MARTIN TRUEX JR FOUNDATION
JEFF GORDONS CHILDRENS FOUNDATION
SUSAN HOCKADAY DDS/ JIM BAUCOM DDS
CHARLOTTE SMARTY PANTS
SHEA HOMES- CHARLOTTE
NOVANT HEALTH/ CARMEL OBGYN
YELLOW CAB OF CHARLOTTE
PROVIDENCE EYE AND LASER SPECIALISTS
SMALL HANDS BIG ART
BALLANTYNE PEDIATRIC DENTISTRY
THE BLACKER FAMILY
LAXER, LONG AND SAVAGE
TOM BUSH LAW GROUP
PURE BARRE BALLANTYNE
BRACES BY BIRD
EXTREME MULTISPORT/ ISAGENIX
BEAT CANCER TODAY
PROPERTIES BY PATTON
ORANGE THEORY FITNESS
BIZ TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS
CHARLOTTE SWIM ACADEMY
DANNY & BETH RIVERA – TASTEFULLY SIMPLE
FAMILY FIRST CHIROPRACTOR AND ACUPUNCTURE
LANG KERLY CONSTRUCTION
MEDI WEIGHTLOSS CLINIC
MERRILL LYNCH- RIVLIN FIRESTONE GROUP
MILLER STREET DANCE ACADEMY
SOUTHPARK PEDIATRIC DENTISTRY
CAROLINA SPORTS CLINIC
106.5 THE END
THE WOODY AND WILCOX SHOW
A BOUNCEABLE TIME
SEARCH AND BE FOUND
BLACKFINN AMERIPUB- BALLANTYNE
JIM N NICKS BBQ
IN-KIND FOOD PARTNERS:
ANOTHER BROKEN EGG CAFE- BALLANTYNE
CLEAN JUICE- STONECREST
THE PRODUCE BOX
COCA COLA BOTTLING
KING OF POPS
NOTHING BUNDT CAKES
PHOTOGRAPHY AND VIDEOGRAPHY:
By: Erin Santos (Isabella’s mommy)
I’ve written some things in the past that have made a difference or gotten someone up out of the chair. For the first time this year I thought, I’m not going to write something because people finally get it. I’ve written about how “awareness” is a bullshit word and how instead we should take action. I’ve written about what all cancer steals from a family when someone dies. And last year I wrote 30 days of “whys”. Why people get divorced, why I stopped visiting her, why we cremated her and more. I have poured my heart out year after year, picking my scab and pulling back the curtain on what cancer, loss, and heartache is really like. So I figure you get it now.
Each year the foundation grows more and more. We see more dedicated people coming to support the cause who never even knew Isabella. People would tell me what we are doing here is phenomenal. Most non-profit’s had a run rate between 8-10 years before they close their doors. They slowly lose their supporters. But we were different somehow. We had some secret sauce to what we were doing that meant we were going to survive the charity down turn. Even more amazing is that we were doing this all without Isabella standing on stage or asking people in Target to come to her race. Maybe we were going to be the charity that survived the industry down turn because our supporters were lifelong supporters.
I have to say, today I’m scared.
When you are riding on the wings of a ghost year after year, you begin to have moments where you think your message is falling on deaf ears. In years past, it seemed easier for me to rally the troops. But this year I feel like something changed. I sit back and watch social media and see these people on the Dream Team posting pages after they have gotten up on a Saturday morning while everyone in the world is snug in their bed. I see them fighting mentally to run in the heat and humidity, up hills – putting in mileage they never dreamed they could accomplish. Only to finish with their body’s aching, limping to their cars. They go home and push out their proud morning to their supporters and often times get no donations to support them. We have runners that show up every morning, to save kids they don’t even know – someone else’s kids – and have trouble receiving $500 in donations over a period of 6 months of training. How is that possible? I worry I have somehow let these people down by not providing them with a child they can fight for. Am I not supplying content that is meaningful that will make their supporters understand how important this is?
I watch us work all year towards a race that is dragging in numbers. I have to tell myself that people always sign up late, but we all watch as excuses come in about why someone can’t attend. Soccer games, vacations, family in town, and a party the night before (possible hangover)… the list goes on and on. It’s so hard for me to hear the excuses when I watch my team work tirelessly to make the day so amazing for everyone. I want the entire city to show up and appreciate all they have done.
I think it’s hard because I watched Isabella walk Time Warner Cable arena, on a beautiful day when all her friends were playing, to collect money for the Ronald McDonald House, or bake cookies for families or give her toys away. No matter what she had going on – she knew what was important and made the time for it. Stuart always said that by watching Isabella, you always realize the things you really thought were important – really aren’t. She always got it. I love those that get it. I love seeing people that have been there year over year – no matter what their Saturday looks like. I love when I see people at the race who come with their company that is in for the weekend. I love people like the Gold family who are currently fighting neuroblastoma themselves, who can’t come to the race because they are taking their family to Disney. (Talk about a good excuse!) Instead they created a team and are constantly recruiting people to come to the race under their team name. They created a FirstGiving page and have raised over $3,000. Just today their family was here picking up our ISF tent to hold a lemonade stand on a Saturday night to raise money for a cure that might help their own daughter. They get it.
I wish I knew how to motivate others into action like I once did so easily. I wish the Dream Team was being rewarded for the 8 miles they ran for other people’s children this morning, and again and again when they ask for your support. I hope my ISF team feels a huge sense of accomplishment when they see the waves of purple 2 weeks from today. I hope everyone who supports ISF feels proud when we are able to send funds to advance treatment is Isabella’s name. I wish Isabella were here so you all had someone to save who you could see that morning. But she isn’t here because for years, these pleas have fallen on deaf ears and her death was the consequence of silence.
My hope is that instead of liking a page, sharing a post or being aware of her passing – you make the change to do something about it. These kids all need us to change from awareness to action. The clock is ticking.
Sign up for the race. Be a Phantom Runner. Create a Team. Create a FirstGiving Page. Support a FirstGiving Page. Just do something.
By Guest Blogger: Juliane Kilcoyne
I have lived in Charlotte for over 11 years now, but I will always consider myself a Jersey Girl. Born and raised in Northern NJ – I’m not sure my inner Jersey Girl would approve of this present day Charlottean during marathon training.
The Hair – Let’s be honest, Jersey hair was BIG. It was curled, it was teased, it was covered in Aquanet. (no, I will not include a picture). Marathon hair is the opposite. It’s in a pony, a tight pony, usually covered by a hat, sometimes if I’m feeling fancy, there is a braid. After every run I wash it, then weigh the pros and cons of blowing it out. I’ll either be running or cross training the next day, so what’s the point right? It’s a vicious cycle and my poor hair pays the price.
The Nails – My Jersey Nails were hot pink, plastic and well maintained. While my fingernails are nondescript now, my toenails get a lot of attention these days. They fall off! During my 16 mile run in the rain this past Friday, I thought something had gotten caught in my sock. I realized after it was over, that not only were my toes swollen and blistered, but, I had in fact, started losing my nails. It’s totally nasty and a rite of passage for most marathoners. Sometimes I muster the courage to get a pedicure during training just because a soak and foot massage would be amazing. Then, I spend the entire time apologizing to the nail tech and stopping her from applying fake nails to my toes.
The Fashion – My old Jersey Girl loved her black leggings, scrunchies, leg warmers and oversized shirts. These days, my style consists of running tops, running shorts, running shoes, oh, and running socks. Yes, after my workouts I shower (don’t blow out my hair) and put on clean clothes – clean running clothes. I think, “what’s the point of getting dressed up for a couple hours, the kids will be home from school soon, which means it’s practically time to go to bed, so why waste a perfectly good outfit?” Oh the shame my inner Jersey Girl must feel seeing me in the same running clothes day after day!
While the Jersey Girl in me may not approve of my marathon fashion sense (or lack thereof) here’s what she and I both believe:
-There are children right now having chemotherapy. They would love to have hair – whether teased or in a ponytail.
-Little girls will lose their battle with cancer today and never be able to go to the nail salon to paint their nails a pretty pink.
-Children are wearing hospital gowns tonight, dreaming of the day they can put on their regular clothes (fashionable or not) and walk out the door.
Fashion seems like a small price to pay when you take a look at the reasons why we run. And, because of that, I know my inner Jersey Girl approves.