By Melanie Ibanez
Cancer Kids First is a non-profit organization and club on campus whose overall purpose is to help pediatric cancer patients experience a better childhood by giving them arts and crafts. Members of the organization also donate care packages, books, coloring pages, and more. They do this to spread joy in the children’s lives as well as to encourage them to keep on fighting.
“I wanted to join the club in order to work with kids who are facing difficult circumstances and to give them a chance of happiness and a better quality of life,” senior Sanskar Khadka said.
The club works with kids afflicted with cancer ranging from five years old to teens just like us.
Through this program, members can earn hours of community service. They gain one hour for every craft, letter, or card they submit. The organization also holds service events and fundraisers throughout the semester. Members are also given 30 minutes of service for every social media post they repost.
“I was inspired to create this club with the intent of bringing these children some joy in the midst of their battles along with making service hours more accessible to students at GHCHS. Writing letters with Cancer Kids First is an easy, fun way to gain volunteer hours for college while also contributing to a meaningful cause,” senior and president Serine Hassan said..
This organization was originally founded by Olivia Zhang, who was then 14 years old. She lost two important people, her grandfather and a teacher, to cancer. Witnessing the difficulty of battling cancer inspired her to start an organization to help others dealing with the same issues.
After just two years since being created, Cancer Kids First has donated over 5,000 toys/books, sent over 20,000 cards, and raised over $20,000 to increase access to treatments for kids with cancer in low-income areas to pediatric cancer centers worldwide.