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Lompoc Record


Money to aid local families whose children have cancer

11-21-2013 11-42-05 AM


The Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation is two weeks into its inaugural Gold Ribbon awareness and fundraising campaign, in which it hopes to raise $200,000 to aid local families whose children have cancer.

The foundation has raised more than half of that money so far, according to a spokesperson for the organization. A press release for the campaign said the money will help families who struggle with the financial toll of child cancer.

“When a child is diagnosed with cancer, their parents have to take time off work, or quit their job, to be in the hospital with their child — significantly decreasing their monthly income,” the release read.

Lompoc resident Jill Fanello-Emerson is familiar with that story. Her daughter, Makenna Emerson, has been diagnosed with cancer.

“Getting a cancer diagnosis for my baby was officially the very worst day of my life,” Fanello-Emerson said in the release. “Discovering that an organization existed that would help ease some of the tremendous financial burden of this horrendous experience definitely made it easier.”

The campaign runs through Oct. 31 and seeks to educate the public on childhood cancer and raise money to help support families experiencing it.

“Our goal is to make gold ribbons, which is the color of pediatric cancer, as well known as the pink ribbons you see everywhere,” Lindsey Guerrero, the foundation’s executive director, said referring to the popular breast cancer awareness ribbons.

Thirty-six children are diagnosed with cancer every day in the United States, and 160,000 kids worldwide are added to that list every year.

One in every 300 will develop some kind of cancer before they are 20 years old, and with treatments lasting anywhere from six months to three years, families suffer as much as the children themselves.

Last year, the foundation assisted 674 individuals and 151 families in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Ventura counties.

To help, text “Teddy” to 51400, create fundraising team at, donate to www.teddy or mail a check to Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation, 2320 Bath St., Suite 107, Santa Barbara, CA 93105.

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