Children's Cancer Recovery
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CCRF Offers Healthier Thanksgiving Dinner Choices & Handy Grocery Shopping List

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Thanksgiving children

Avoiding processed foods and food additives can help decrease risk of cancer and contribute to a healthier lifestyle

As Thanksgiving approaches, families across the nation will begin preparing for their traditional holiday meal. While a hardy stuffing and cranberry from the can may sound delicious, these Thanksgiving staples often contain artificial ingredients and even potential cancer-causing chemicals. As part of its Toxic Free Kids initiative, Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF) recommends families consider natural, organic choices when shopping for this year’s Thanksgiving dinner.

According to WebMD.com, a variety of cancers, including colorectal, esophageal and liver cancers are linked to highly-processed foods. There are also known carcinogens, such as sodium nitrate, sodium nitrite and refined white flours, lurking in many Thanksgiving favorites such as bacon, stuffing and many canned foods. Natural and organic foods have outstanding health benefits and are a tasty addition to the traditional Thanksgiving dinner.

Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation offers a handy Thanksgiving meal grocery store list that shoppers can use to make healthier choices. The organization also provides these additional tips:
Thanksgiving-Shopping-List

  • Avoid processed food: Many highly processed foods, such as salad dressing, processed meats and refined white flour, contain known carcinogens. Instead, try healthy alternatives, like homemade salad dressing and whole grain flour.
  • Choose organic foods: Organic vegetables contain fewer pesticides. According to the Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit organization that analyzes the results of government pesticide testing in the U.S., common Thanksgiving foods, such as apples, cucumbers, celery, potatoes and spinach, all contain high levels of pesticides. It is best to purchase the organic versions of these foods, which are widely available in most grocery stores and whole food markets.
  • Avoid products that contain refined white flour and sodium nitrate/nitrite: As previously stated, refined white flour, sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite are harmful compounds that can potentially cause cancer, and are contributors to obesity.
  • Read the label: Ingredient labels are a simple resource to avoid unhealthy foods and toxic additives. Some common ingredients to avoid are shortening (fat that is solid at room temperature), hydrogenated oil, palm oil, high fructose corn syrup, sodium benzoate (a common food preservative) and aspartame (a sugar substitute).

Reading the labels, understanding the ingredients and opting for healthier choices will lead to a happy and healthier Thanksgiving.

About Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF)

Headquartered in Harrisburg, PA with a division in The Woodlands, TX, the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation supports children under 18 and their families facing the hardships of cancer. The foundation performs acts of care and kindness through the following programs: Bear-Able Gifts (largest distributor of gifts to children with cancer in the U.S.); Toxic-Free Kids (educates families on the dangers of environmental toxins); New Era Cancer Research Fund (funds research for less toxic, minimally-invasive pediatric-cancer treatments); International Aid (provides medications and supplies to clinics in developing and impoverished countries); Helping Hands Fund (provides emergency financial assistance to families); and Camp Scholarships (allows children in remission to reconnect with activities they love). With a national pediatric-hospital partner network of 215+ locations, the foundation directly helps more than 15,000 children affected by cancer and their families every year. Please visit www.ChildrensCancerRecovery.org.



Strong Need for Businesses to Help Spread Holiday Cheer to Children Battling Cancer

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- Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation Urges Texas and Pennsylvania Business Owners to
Hold a Holiday Toy Drive to Help Fill Empty Shelves -

Children Battling Cancer Toy DriveHarrisburg, PA -- October 31, 2014 -- In an effort to spread joy to children struggling with cancer, the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF) is asking business owners in the Texas and Pennsylvania areas to host an office toy drive this holiday season. Donations will directly benefit the organization’s Bear-Able Gift Program, which delivers thousands of gifts to children receiving treatment in hospitals throughout the nation.

“There is a serious physical and emotional burden placed on a child diagnosed with cancer. At CCRF, our goal is to lift spirits, inspire hope and put smiles on the faces of these brave young cancer patients,” said Greg Anderson, founder of Harrisburg, PA-based CCRF. “The holiday season can be especially difficult for cancer patients and their families. We are urging local businesses to hold a holiday toy drive. Every gift will help us spread holiday happiness and hope to these children.”

Participation is simple, yet the rewards are great; CCRF will provide everything needed for a successful toy drive. Your job is to encourage employee participation. Donations must be new and unwrapped. Toys can include, but are not limited to, jigsaw puzzles, coloring books, markers, crayons, colored pencils, stuffed animals, video games, Hotwheels/Matchbox cars, board games, journals, PlayDoh, Sudoku, word search books and reading books.

“Toy drives are essential to help fill our bare shelves and brighten the holidays for pediatric cancer patients,” added Mr. Anderson. “A simple donation of a board game or stuffed animal can truly make a difference. Your gift can put a smile on a child’s face, joy in their heart and hope in their battle against cancer.”

To learn more about Bear-Able Gifts or other programs and services offered by CCRF, visit childrenscancerrecovery.org or email childrens@cancerrecovery.org.

About Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF)

Headquartered in Harrisburg, PA with a division in The Woodlands, TX, the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation supports children under 18 and their families facing the hardships of cancer. The foundation performs acts of care and kindness through the following programs: Bear-Able Gifts (largest distributor of gifts to children with cancer in the U.S.); Toxic-Free Kids (educates families on the dangers of environmental toxins); New Era Cancer Research Fund (funds research for less toxic, minimally-invasive pediatric-cancer treatments); International Aid (provides medications and supplies to clinics in developing and impoverished countries); Helping Hands Fund (provides emergency financial assistance to families); and Camp Scholarships (allows children in remission to reconnect with activities they love). With a national pediatric-hospital partner network of 215+ locations, the foundation directly helps more than 15,000 children affected by cancer and their families every year. Please visit www.ChildrensCancerRecovery.org.



Mason’s Story

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Child Name: Mason
Age: 2
Diagnosis: Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia High Risk T Cell
State: IL
Program: Helping Hands Fund, Children's Cancer Recovery Foundation
Date Helped: August 2014

1. Cancer. When did this word enter your life?  Mason was diagnosed with ALL on January 9, 2014

2. How has cancer affected your family in a positive and/or negative way?  Mason’s diagnosis has affected us in several different ways. It has brought our family together and has made us stronger than ever. We prioritize things differently when it comes to money, making sure he can get to his treatments. It has caused us stress financially and has started to get us behind on bills. We have changed a lot of things we used to do to make sure Mason is healthy and strong. We have put Mason and his treatments before everything.

3. What has been the biggest challenge or struggle during your child's treatment?  The biggest challenge is financially getting him to his appointments since we are 4 hours away from the hospital. Gas, food and lodging have taken a large hit on us financially. Mason also doesn't get to see his other brothers and sisters as often do to them being sick, his counts are low, or he just isn’t home because we are at the hospital.

4. How have you and your family stayed mentally and emotionally healthy?  The time of diagnoses was very difficult for us. Watching my son in the ICU for 10 days made me realize that this isn't going away anytime soon. He needs me and the rest of our family more now, than ever. The more I talked to friends and family about the situation, the more I was able to wrap my head around it. I gained composure and now take it day by day.

5. What has brought the most joy or fun to your family's life during your child's treatment?  We haven't bonded this much since he was born. We make sure we do everything we can together. We have seen the zoo several times and I'm sure he wouldn't have gotten to see it that many times if we didn't have to travel to St Louis weekly.

6. How was your family impacted when you were chosen to receive help from our programs?  Yes we have just received your assistance couple weeks ago for utility bills we got behind on. Without the program we wouldn't have lights or gas. We appreciate everything you guys do for each and every family out there this program helped us in the time of need and allowed me to focus on my son.

Mason



Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation Brings Smiles to Kids with Cancer

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Photo: Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation brings smiles to a young patient and his parents with a gift package.

HARRISBURG, PA — October 15, 2014 —The continual kindness of individuals and corporations across the United States has allowed the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation’s (CCRF) Bear-Able Gift Program to bring joy and smiles to thousands of children batting cancer. Those smiles help to make the life of a child with cancer more optimistic and cheerful. Recently, the Bear-Able Gift Program delivered 15,717 toys and gifts to 55 hospitals across the U.S.to help lighten the lives of children living with cancer. Year-to-date, CCRF has delivered 37,154 toys and gifts, touching the lives of 9,988 boys and girls across America.

The Bear-Able Gift Program distributes items such as games, toys, crayons, coloring books, video games, puzzles, books and teddy bears to hospitals and oncology centers across the country. The program makes CCRF the largest supplier of gifts to children in North America who have cancer. It relies solely on donations of new and unwrapped toys.

“We are extremely thankful for the donations from individuals and businesses year-round,” said Greg Anderson, founder of the Harrisburg, PA-based CCRF. “They play an important role in our Bear-Able Gift program, and enable us to spread happiness to these children during a very difficult time.”

There are a number of ways in which individuals and businesses can help support CCRF’s Bear-Able Gift Program; they include sponsoring a toy drive, or raising or donating funds. For more information, please visit  Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation’s (CCRF) Bear-Able Gift Program  or contact childrens@cancerrecovery.org.

About Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF)

Headquartered in Harrisburg, PA with a division in The Woodlands, TX, the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation supports children under 18 and their families facing the hardships of cancer. The foundation performs acts of care and kindness through the following programs: Bear-Able Gifts (largest distributor of gifts to children with cancer in the U.S.); Toxic-Free Kids (educates families on the dangers of environmental toxins); New Era Cancer Research Fund (funds research for less toxic, minimally-invasive pediatric-cancer treatments); International Aid (provides medications and supplies to clinics in developing and impoverished countries); Helping Hands Fund (provides emergency financial assistance to families); and Camp Scholarships (allows children in remission to reconnect with activities they love). With a national pediatric-hospital partner network of 215+ locations, the foundation directly helps more than 15,000 children affected by cancer and their families every year. Please visit www.ChildrensCancerRecovery.org.



Non-Profit CCRF Hires Bridget Vigue of York, PA as Grants Manager

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Bridget_VHarrisburg, PA – October 13, 2014 – The Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF), a national charity organization that assists children diagnosed with cancer and their families, announces Bridget Vigue, of York, Pennsylvania, as its new Grants Manager. Based in the organization’s Harrisburg headquarters, she will be responsible for the research and identification of potential foundation and corporate grant funding prospects for CCRF.

Among Ms. Vigue’s specific responsibilities will include writing and tracking the status of grant proposals, budget development, submitting grant requests to potential funders, and grant follow-up. Additionally, she will assist with CCRF’s Combined Federal Campaign and Combined State Campaign.

Formerly, Ms. Vigue worked on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. as a Legislative Advisor for various members of the U.S. Congress. She has served as a Legislative Liaison for the Fraternal Order of Police’s (FOP) National Legislative Office, where she performed duties imperative to rank-and-file officers and managed the FOP’s Political Action Committee.

“We are extremely delighted to welcome Bridget to the CCRF team,” said Greg Anderson, founder and CEO of the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation. “Her experience in the areas of extensive work planning, grant program enhancements and management of grant processes will help CCRF further develop as a non-profit, and her expertise and talent will serve as assets to the growth of our foundation.”

Originally from Maryland, Ms. Vigue graduated from the University of Delaware with a major in Political Science and a minor in History. She continued her education in Political Management and earned her Master’s degree from George Washington University.

About Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation (CCRF)

Headquartered in Harrisburg, PA with a division in The Woodlands, TX, the Children’s Cancer Recovery Foundation supports children under 18 and their families facing the hardships of cancer. The foundation performs acts of care and kindness through the following programs: Bear-Able Gifts (largest distributor of gifts to children with cancer in the U.S.); Toxic-Free Kids (educates families on the dangers of environmental toxins); New Era Cancer Research Fund (funds research for less toxic, minimally-invasive pediatric-cancer treatments); International Aid (provides medications and supplies to clinics in developing and impoverished countries); Helping Hands Fund (provides emergency financial assistance to families); and Camp Scholarships (allows children in remission to reconnect with activities they love). With a national pediatric-hospital partner network of 215+ locations, the foundation directly helps more than 15,000 children affected by cancer and their families every year. Please visit www.ChildrensCancerRecovery.org.