A flash of energetic bright blonde hair, attached to the body of a preschool boy laughing and loving was usually all you saw. That all changed in July 2015, when Jonah, age 4, was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, the most common form of malignant pediatric brain cancer. Despite it being the most common form of malignant pediatric brain cancer, there are only about 350 new cases diagnosed in the US each year.
Jonah endured a 10-month hospitalization for treatment; which included multiple brain surgeries, 6 rounds of high dose chemotherapy, a stem cell transplant and 30 sessions of high dose cranial-spinal radiation. Jonah’s treatment has addressed his brain tumor, but has come at a high cost - Jonah now requires a walker and hearing aides as part of his daily routine and is learning every day to compensate for the physical and mental changes that come from treatment.
Jonah has a bright spirit - goofy, loving, inclusive. He is very much the same boy he was before treatment, even though he is so different. He hasn’t met a dog, or an Oreo that he doesn’t like and has a string of jokes to bring laughter into any room. He is compassionate and caring for others.
Pediatric cancer research is very underfunded and lags significantly behind adult cancer research. All of the hundreds of pediatric cancers combined only receive a small percentage of US federal funding for research, so most research is funded through organizations like St. Baldrick’s. Through this fund, we want to raise awareness, hope and research dollars. We have come to firmly believe that awareness raises money, money facilitates research and research discovers better treatments and cures. The Strong & Courageous Fund will be focused on funding medulloblastoma research, but our ultimate goal is to stand alongside those fighting for a cure of all childhood cancers - every kid, every time.
Donations given to Strong & Courageous go directly to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation to fund lifesaving childhood cancer research around the world. The Foundation is guided by a Scientific Advisory Committee, comprised of leading experts in the childhood cancer community, to ensure that every dollar makes the greatest impact for kids with cancer.
These people make us smile - they’re the doers and money-raisers on behalf of Strong & Courageous. They’re shaving their heads, hosting events, starting fundraisers and more to make childhood cancer research possible.
Start your own St. Baldrick’s head-shaving event to raise money on behalf of our Hero Fund! You’ll be paired with a staff member who will walk you through every step of the process, and you’ll have fun knowing you’re doing a great thing for kids with cancer.
Register to shave your head and raise money for our Hero Fund at any St. Baldrick’s event happening around the world! Not finding an event near you? Register as a virtual shavee and shave your head anytime, anywhere.